The Blue Zones Kitchen 100 Recipes to Live to 100 by Dan Buettner

The Blue Zones Kitchen is a cookbook that stems from the research done for National Geographic regarding the five areas in the world where people live the longest, which the researchers refer to as Blue Zones. I would highly recommend picking up at least one of Dan Buettner’s Blue Zones books to understand what makes these areas of the world so special and see where you can make adjustments for you and your family to enjoy some of the benefits of Blue Zone lifestyles.

During a trip to Sardinia with The Culinary Institute of America, I was lucky enough to attend a presentation by Dr. Gianni Pes and his partner who began the research for the Blue Zones in Sardinia and we met with one of the centenarians in the village of Seulo who told us all about her incredible, simple, beautiful life. I also had the privilege of sitting next to Dr. Pes, his partner and their wives for dinner that evening and had one of the best nights of my life with a homemade Sardinian meal and conversation with two of the most interesting people in the world.

One thing that we learned that day was about the impact of adding sourdough bread to your diet. The doctors found that eating sourdough bread with meals made a great impact on gut health and blood sugar levels. I was very excited when The Blue Zones Kitchen came out and I can’t wait to try the recipe for sourdough bread from Ikaria, Greece and add it to my family’s diet. (I will be picking up sourdough starter from a local bakery this week!)

The Blue Zones Kitchen is compiled of 100 plant based recipes, the author explains that while some of the people in Blue Zones eat meat, it is no more than about 2oz., no more than 5 times a month and it is used mostly as a flavoring agent and for special occasions so he focused on the plant based recipes. Beans are a huge part of all of the areas diets as well as nuts and plenty of green vegetables. 

The recipes in the book are varied through each location and highlight the unique ingredients of each culture, I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking to improve their diet and add special twists on foods that may previously have been seen as boring. I will be posting the recipes that I have made from the book on my instagram (julianneparkis) if you want to check out the results!