The Culture of Food and Drink

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Clifford A. Wright won the James Beard/ KitchenAid Cookbook of the Year award and the James Beard Award for the Best Writing on Food in 2000 for "A Mediterranean Feast" which was also a finalist for the IACP Cookbook of the Year award. Saveur magazine chose the book for its Saveur 100 list. His book "Mediterranean Vegetables" was chosen one of the top ten Cookbooks of 2001 by the Chicago Tribune and his first cookbook, "Cucina Paradiso: The Heavenly Food of Sicily," was a "best book of 1992" in the New York Times Book Review’s Christmas List. He is the author of 16 books, of which 14 are cookbooks and a contributor to eight others. His latest book "One-Pot Wonders” was published by Wiley in 2013. Colman Andrews, former editor of Saveur magazine called Wright "the reigning English-speaking expert on the cuisines and culinary culture of the Mediterranean." As an independent food scholar he has lectured at the Center for European Studies at Harvard, the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies at Georgetown, the Rusk School for International Affairs at Davidson College, the Culinary Institute of America, and other universities. He also writes for food magazines such as Saveur, Gourmet, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine, and Bon Appétit and wrote all the food entries for Columbia University's "Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East" and several entries for the “Oxford Companion to Sweets.” His scholarly articles on food have appeared in peer-review journals such as Gastronomica, Food and Foodways, and Al-Masaq: Islam and the Medieval Mediterranean Studia Arabo-Islamica Mediterranea.  Wright also writes for his own web sites, and

Fish and chips for Red Sox fans. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

The 2013 World Series features a matchup between the Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals. Many of us expect to spend a

Scrapple and eggs for breakfast. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

Scrapple is one of those regional American favorites that remain a mystery to outsiders. You'll find it in the mid-Atlantic states. Scrapple is a

Flowering kale. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

How kale went from a cellar-dwelling vegetable to a pennant-winning one is an interesting story full of ups and downs throughout history. When I started

Ladyfingers with strawberries and mascarpone. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

For any number of reasons, you might find yourself without a dessert for your dinner party. Maybe you were too tired or maybe you

A porterhouse steak on the grill. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

There's something about an old way of doing things that is just right. My friend and Zester Daily contributor Martha Rose Shulman recently sent

Padron chilies, also known as shishito chilies, on the grill. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

Farmers markets are bursting with all kinds of peppers and chilies, and on the grill these spicy or sweet fleshy fruits are a delight

Rice pilaf with lamb meatballs (kafta bi’l-ruzz). Credit: Clifford A. Wright

I have noticed that some people don't like a recipe with a long list of ingredients. I'm utterly baffled by this. I can understand

Garden of the Generalife in the Alhambra, Granada. Credit: Clifford A. Wright

As cooks, we are naturally drawn to recipes. Recipes are instructions to be followed to create a dish. However, to be a better cook,