The new header is from a picture I took in 2003 on Mount Athos, the world’s largest Christian monastic community, located in Northern Greece. I have been there some 14 times since 1975. In 2003 we were once again hosted by our Cretan friends, three monks (two brothers and their cousin) who live in their own hermitage. They have magnificent gardens, growing their own vegetables and grapes for making wine. They are also master cooks. The photo is taken in their kitchen: A trusty ancient cast iron pan in which they cook just about everything. They also use a massive wood stove for baking. The food is indescribable: Simple, yet with ingredients picked minutes earlier from the garden, drenched in their own olive oil, and served with homemade bread and wine. A defining food experience.

I thought the quote from Alexis Zorba was very appropriate. It also defines what I am looking for in cooking. Diets be damned.