In the bites that follow, keep this edict from Luciano Pavarotti in mind: One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.
We're firm believers in the philosophy that food, history and culture are intertwined. (What else could explain cracklin' in rural Louisiana or jalapeño-infused margaritas in Arizona?) So, when we are on the road we are always looking for the dishes that are local; those foods that bring us closer to the people and the landscape we are travelling through. We scour shelves at local grocery stores, hunt through farmers' markets and ask a lot of questions. It's a way to fill our stomachs and gain a little cultural wisdom along the way.