Today @ MAND – Last Week of April

April 26th, 2021

What did you cook this week? I enjoyed some amazing hummus and even a picnic after a long bike ride. As April comes to a close, we hope you enjoy reading a feature of an amazing dietetic intern. Keep scrolling to the bottom for some speaker series.

A Middle-Eastern Experience in the Western World

As the old saying goes, you can take a girl out of the Middle East, but you can’t take the Middle East out of the girl. I was only a few months old when my mother and I moved to the US to live with my father. Growing up, I didn’t realize how lucky I was to be the daughter of a Lebanese chef. I remember almost every night growing up, and still now, my mother would take her time in the kitchen, dice the tomatoes, parsley and onions perfectly and expertly season her fish and meat to throw into the oven. I grew up in a small neighborhood in Vermont and did not understand the differences between dinner time cultures as I did not have much to compare it to.
In my culture, it is tradition to have dinner together with your family every night. Typically, it is the women of the house who cook the meal, however, that tradition may be changing in the more recent years. Sure, there would be the occasional pizza or takeout here and there, but Mediterranean food reigned supreme in our household.

I remember sitting at the kitchen table, watching my mother effortlessly cook such divine meals. The aroma itself was incredible. Garlic, lemons, onions and allspice filled the air. While some dishes would require merely 30 minutes, others would take hours. My favorite dish to this day is known as “Warak Arish” (similar to the Greek dolma). Carefully, with her loving hands, my mother would take the pickled grape leaves out of the jar, rinse them, and then stuff them with a variety of assortments, including rice, pine nuts, parsley, tomatoes, olive oil, salt, etc. We would have these on special occasions, such as on birthdays or during holidays. What’s astonishing is that nearly every country in the Middle East has their own version of the same meals. Whereas Turkey might cook their bulgur and rice in one way, Syria might do it another. It has come to delightfully surprise me that several of our classic dishes are now known to many in the West as the “Mediterranean diet”.

Like many other cultures, one of the custom traditions is to make coffee in the morning and when guests come over. Turkish coffee, similar to a cup of espresso, is made in an open- faced kettle. I remember watching my mother boil the water and add what seemed to be heaping spoonfuls of the ground coffee to the water. It is meant to be sipped slowly and through conversation. It is rare, if ever, to encounter any Lebanese household without one of these kettles in their cupboard. Lebanese culture is warm and embracing and we demonstrate our love and compassion through the act of cooking and eating. Gathering around the table for food, coffee and conversation plays a beautiful and critical role in the upbringing of many in the Middle East and has come to help form my own Arab-American path to this day.

Reem Bou-Nacklie is currently working as a Sodexo Dietetic Intern, with a culinary concentration, in Massachusetts. She is a recent graduate of the University of Vermont, with a major in Dietetics, Nutrition and Food Science and a minor in Food Systems. She plans on returning to the University of Vermont in Fall, 2021, for a Master’s degree in Nutrition and Food Sciences. She moved to Vermont when she was a few months old and has been living there for over 20 years. She recently moved to MA this past fall for a chance to live in the city and experience new things. She has a love for food and traveling and has been to places, such as Lebanon, Puerto Rico, France, Sweden, and Kenya. She believes everyone has the right to food. She wants to dedicate her life towards ensuring food security and teaching those about the wonders of food and how they can incorporate these teachings into their daily lives. It is her goal to incorporate her beliefs into her future career and to work with her local and global community members.


MAND Blog

Have you thought about posting to the blog, but don’t know what you could contribute? 

 At MAND we welcome anything from recipes, your personal update, interesting research articles (almost a mini lit review), pictures from events, podcasts people have been listening to, etc. Just include any resources. Make sure to include your very favorite photo!

Send us an email: newsletter@eatrightma.org

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND- Election Results

April 22nd, 2021

Happy Earth Day! After a long anticipated vote, the results are in! The MAND Nominating Committee is proud to introduce the elected officers of the 2021-2022 MAND Board of Directors. Watch the blog for biographies in the coming months. President-Elect – Frances Parpos, RD, LDN, CDCES Secretary-Elect – Valerie Machinist, MS, RD, LDN Treasurer-Elect – […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND- April is Arab American Heritage Month

April 6th, 2021

DEI Spotlight: Norah Ismail As the holy month of Ramadan approaches this April, I find myself reflecting quite a bit on my path and where it has led me.  Born in Egypt to immigrant parents and growing up in communities where diversity was the majority, I never quite understood how “othered” my identities made me. […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND- Recipe Time

March 15th, 2021

DEI Bay State Potluck Recipe Collection! Share your favorite culturally diverse recipe with MAND members! The MAND DEI Committee is looking for exciting international recipes to begin a collection featuring a variety of cultural foods.  Do you have a cultural or diverse ethnic recipe to share?  We’d love for you to share your recipe so […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND – RDN Day of Giving

March 9th, 2021

Join us on March 10th for our inaugural Day of Giving! Every donation counts, and every penny goes to a future RDN to cover student expenses in scholarship awards. Please join us in support of the Massachusetts Dietitians Education Foundation (MDEF) to raise scholarship funds for future RDs! The first annual Day of Giving will […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND – National Nutrition Month

March 1st, 2021

National Nutrition Month is here! This means that it is time for MAND Elections 2021 – 2022! Here is the link to access: https://www.eatrightma.org/members/election.cfm?id=6Voting closes March 31st.

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND – Nominations and Black History Month

February 27th, 2021

AND elections are done and Massachusetts participation went up to 13.54% from last year’s 8.1%! Keep up the participation as we have the MAND Board of Directors elections coming quickly. Read further for the nominations. Lastly, the entire month of February is National Black History Month. So at MAND we wanted to feature once again […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND- Election Time!

February 13th, 2021

It is time! Get out your ballots and think about voting in the upcoming MAND election. The MAND election is set to begin on March 1. Please read below to see the candidates. There will be more to come on their bios in the upcoming week. LASTLY, don’t forget to vote in the Academy of […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND – Black History Month

February 4th, 2021

Here at MAND we are beyond excited everyday to feature the amazing diverse dietitians that serve the community of Massachusetts. Today, we interview Sue-Ellen Anderson Hayes and her path to becoming a registered dietitian. Please continue to support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and all dietitians. DEI Feature: Sue-Ellen Anderson Haynes My name is Sue-Ellen Anderson […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Today @ MAND – Goodbye January

January 29th, 2021

Can you believe January is almost over? As we snuggle into our homes with hot chocolate in hand we can dream about warmer weather together. Follow Dana Steinmetz as she takes us to the Mediterranean Sea and explores different variations of the Mediterranean diet. Regional Variations of the Mediterranean Diet Images of red wine, olive […]

Posted by: Maureen Kelly Gonsalves

Comments (0)


Annual Meeting

Annual Meeting

Thanks for a great virtual ANCE!

Public Policy

Public Policy

Do You Want to Make a Difference for Your Profession and Your Community?  Visit our Public Policy Section.