We're taking a look at vegetarian meat substitutes—things with names like tempeh, seitan, and textured soy protein—that make cutting back on animal products easier for beginning vegetarians. Our guest, Crescent Dragonwagon, author of The Passionate Vegetarian, is a long-time vegan and expert chef. Her Deep December Ragoût of Seitan, Shiitakes, and Winter Vegetables is rich and hearty. Who needs beef?
Jane and Michael Stern wandered off course and are now looking for street food in Rome. Joshua Wesson suggests we look toward the heel of the boot for interesting Southern Italian wines. The Washington Post's Bureau Chief T.R. Reid takes us out to eat in Nepal. And tea merchant Bill Waddington says knowing the flushes is key to bargains in great tea. We'll have a report on the return of TV dinners (sans the foil tray) in a most unlikely setting: the ultra-luxury Peninsula Beverly Hills Hotel, and, as always, Lynne takes your calls.