Eating a healthy diet is vital in maintaining a healthy weight, boosting the immune system, and keeping diseases often associated with aging at bay. The Greek diet has long been associated with health benefits and longevity. Eating fresh fish, along with fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables are key components of the Greek diet. Fatty fish with heart healthy Omega-3s like salmon, anchovies, and mackerel can help reduce the risks of heart attack and stroke. According to Prevention magazine, studies have shown that centenarians eat less meat and more fish. The American Heart Association recommends two servings of fish per week.
Grilled Whole Fish
4 whole fish, 14 to 16 ounces each, gutted, and scaled, leaving head and skin intact
Greek sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil, plus additional as needed
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
Preheat the grill to medium-high.
Rinse the fish well under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Season the fish on both sides, inside and out with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Brush each fish generously with a tablespoon of the olive oil, or more as needed, and place directly on the prepared outdoor grill. Cook, turning once with a fish spatula and brush with more olive oil as needed, until the fish flakes with a fork and is completely cooked, about six minutes on each side. Remove from grill, place on a plate, and set aside while mixing the remaining olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, and onion in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle the fish with the olive oil-lemon dressing just before serving.
4-6 pounds whole cleaned fish, such as striped bass
4 cups water
2 medium onions, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
3 large carrots, chopped
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2-3 large fresh tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil
2 bay leaves
Clean fish and leave whole if small or cut in half to fit into the pot, and set aside. Add the water, onions, celery, carrots, salt, pepper, tomatoes, and bay leaves to a large deep pot or dutch oven and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Add the oil, reduce heat to medium, and simmer six minutes. Remove the vegetables from the pot with a large slotted spoon and place in bowl, set aside. Add the fish to the pot, bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the fish from the soup with a slotted spoon and set aside in a large bowl or on a platter. To remove any stray fish scales or bones, pour the entire soup through a fine mesh strainer into another pot. Return the vegetables, and the fish in spoon-sized pieces after removing the bones, if preferred, to the strained soup. Serve with an additional drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and fresh bread.