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Mediterranean cuisine, olive oil, and food writing are the topics of the day on A Taste of the Past! Linda Pelaccio is joined in the studio by food writer Nancy Harmon Jenkins. Nancy has written for The New York Times, and is the author of books such as The Mediterranean Diet Cookbook, The Essential Mediterranean, and an upcoming untitled book about olive oil. Hear how Mediterranean food changes from region to region, and learn why authenticity in food and food writing is so nebulous. Listen in to hear about Nancy's upcoming olive oil excursion, and how to determine olive oil quality. What food cultures excite Nancy? Visit Nancy's website, and find out on this week's installment of A Taste of the Past! This episode has been sponsored by 360 Cookware.

"What I resent more than anything else are people who go to a place and spend three weeks, and grab a bunch of recipes, and go home to write about it or set themselves up as an expert. [20:00]

"One of the worst things that has happened in the world of food media has been the entrance of the blogger." [22:00]

-- Nancy Harmon Jenkins on A Taste of the Past


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It's that time of year again - students are headed back to school! Linda Pelaccio gets in the spirit on a academic themed episode of A Taste of the Past with guest Ken Albala, Professor of History at the University of the Pacific, USA. He is the author or editor of 17 books including Eating Right in the Renaissance, The Banquet and Beans: A History. He has also coauthored two cookbooks, The Lost Art of Real Cooking and The Lost Arts of Hearth and Home. With the proliferation of food history courses and avid interest among scholars and the general public, the need for a solid comprehensive collection of key primary texts about food of the past is urgent. His latest book, The Food History Reader, is that collection. Tune in as he urges researchers to focus on primary sources and gives listeners some insights into the world of food history. This program was brought to you by Fairway Market.

"I think we need fewer encyclopedias and more original research and it won't happen unless a generation of students is raised on the original sources and not the rehashes of information." [12:00]

"People eat certain things as expressions of who they are and who they want to be." [16:00]

--Ken Albala on A Taste of the Past


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On today’s episode of THE FOOD SEEN, comedian Max Silvestri, brings his humorous perspective to the world of food. This summer, he’ll be co-hosting FYI Network’s “The Feed” with Top Chef and Food & Wine’s Gail Simmons, as well as chef and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson. Max is also releasing his first stand-up comedy album, King Piglet, which touches on the finer points of gastronomy, like what groceries to shop for during hurricane preparation. Tune in for a hilarious conversation about everything from Ambien on airplanes to water cooler TV talk. This program was brought to you by White Oak Pastures.

"Anybody with a sense of humor likes to watch TV and comment on it - it's something that's built into our culture." [10:00]

"I'm a comedian but there's a lot of different ways to fill in that box these days besides stand up comedy." [19:00]

--Max Silvestri on The Food Seen


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