If he’d had the stuff, I bet Leonardo’s credenzas would have been full of Tupperware. Listen to “Tupperware and the Vitruvian Man.”


Bacco Affresco – Werther Bettini – 1946. La Guercia, Pesaro

Pass the Oil, Please

The truth of the matter is, much of what I’m eating today is an excuse to consume olive oil.  Salads with spiral-cut zucchini and arugula and tuna–it’s a dish that wants a generous anointing with extra virgin olive oil.  Fava beans with chopped tomato–oh, yes, let there be oil. On a steak or a slab of fish, oil provides a definite enhancement. Last night, snacking lightly, I ate a chunk of bread leftover from lunch, giving it a drizzle of olive oil to soak into those dried dimples and crevices, topped with a few slices of mozzarella and leftover scraps of zucchini spirals.

I grew up on margarine, yellow butter-esque chemically-stabilized vegetable spreads purported to be a healthy alternative to butter. The only oil I was acquainted with was Quaker State.  Cholesterol had not been invented. No one talked about good fats and bad fats. No one much correlated food with health, except in terms of tonnage, as in Maybe don’t take a fourth helping of that pie, son.  

In time, thanks to Signora Canducci I’ve come to think of olive oil as