Chicken Marsala

I often get requests for this dish, which is my mother in law’s favorite. I have done some research on its origins and the results are interesting. The basic style of preparation is quite common throughout Italy, generally in the form of a piccata or cutlet lightly floured sautéed in olive oil and/or butter, and […]


Masala Chai

I am, on the whole, a profound devotee of stimulant drinks, without which I cannot imagine actually being creative and productive. My preferred drink among these is coffee, preferably dark roasted until it is a bit smoky, brewed very strong, and served with whole milk or even half and half, with some sugar and perhaps […]

Alchemical Cooking

If you are reading this book you have probably read other books on food as well and probably gravitate towards those that set cooking in its broader historical and cultural context: books like Paula Wolfort’s excellent works on Mediterranean Cooking (Wolfort 1987, 1994, 1998, 2003) or the explorations of Mexican cuisine undertaken by Diane Kennedy […]

Cooking As Sacred Alchemy

Cooking –the manipulation of earth, or rather of its products, using fire and air and water— has always been a sacred and priestly act, bound up with rituals of sacrifice and communion. And it has always been a form of alchemy, transmuting lower forms of matter into higher, making possible human life and human civilization, […]