The Culture of Food and Drink


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David Latt has been a television writer/producer for 30 years, working on "Hill Street Blues" (won an Emmy), "The Hitchhiker," "Bakersfield P.D.," "Get A Life," "EZ Streets," "Stir Crazy," David Lynch's "Twin Peaks" (nominated for a second Emmy) and many others. He co-wrote half a dozen pilot scripts and headed the writing staff of DotComix a motion-capture animation website. And through the long hours and stress of dealing with production craziness -- bad weather, out of control costs, needy actors, and distressed fellow writers -- he shopped at farmers markets, cooked, and wrote about how important it is to eat well.

At times after a difficult week, he would cook all weekend. Eight, 10 hours each day, he worked at the cutting board and stove, cooking until he got his focus back and filled the dining room table with small plates of California-Mediterranean style dishes for his family and friends to enjoy. Wanting to share his passion about food, he wrote recipes and described the fun of exploring the local farmers markets.

Putting his television experience to good use, he created Secrets of Restaurant Chefs, a YouTube channel, with lively videos by well-known chefs sharing their favorite recipes.

In addition to writing about food for Zester Daily and his own sites, Men Who Like to Cook and Men Who Like to Travel, he has contributed to Mark Bittman's New York Times food blog, Bitten, One for the Table and TravelingMom. His helpful guide to holiday entertaining, "10 Delicious Holiday Recipes," is available on Amazon eCookbooks. He still develops for television but finds time to take his passion for food on the road as a contributor to Peter Greenberg's travel site, New York Daily News and Luxury Travel Magazine.

Complaining that busy lives preclude shopping for fresh ingredients and making home-cooked meals, most people rely on shortcuts that include fast food, prepared meals,

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Europeans do it better. Not the wine, beer and cheese, which are all great, but the holidays and vacations. A holiday in Europe occupies at

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For cooks, the arrival of fall isn't a sad transition to winter, but a happy time because we open our cookbooks and pull out

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The obvious reason we eat outside our homes is we are hungry and want someone else to do the work of cooking and cleaning

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You can keep it simple by grilling corn on the cob, or boiling it and slathering it with butter seasoned with sea salt and

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For those of us of a certain age, our first encounter with figs came not in life but in a movie theater when Oliver

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I was looking forward to seeing the tulips on a recent trip to Amsterdam. I imagined endless fields of brightly colored flowers. Unfortunately, I

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In 2009, Starbucks shocked the coffee drinking world when it started selling instant coffee. Starbucks gave it a fancy name, "VIA Ready Brew Coffee,"

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