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Cucina povera, as so much of the cooking in Italy is, too often is translated too literally: poor kitchen. But that’s not a reflection of the food or the people who prepare it. It’s more about making delicious whatever you happen to have around.

It’s hard to resist the allure of a roasted chicken lacquered with a glistening glaze. It’s even harder to nail the recipe. And the challenge is the very ingredient that makes the chicken so attractive — the sugar.

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Fiddleheads are an example of a springtime delicacy with a short season. The shoots can be found at farmer's markets and grocery stores from April to June and they make a great addition to a variety of spring and summer meals.

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The author of “Heat” writes of his adventures working in restaurant kitchens in Lyon, France. “So much cooking and eating gets done that Buford’s next book, after ‘Heat’ and ‘Dirt,’ in order to preserve the ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ cadence, should probably be titled ‘Gout,’” wrote New York Times reviewer Dwight Garner. “I admire this book enormously; it’s a profound and intuitive work of immersive journalism.”

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