Of Marco Polo and spinach

James Carrier
A dish with varied influences

Spinach with Lemon and Currants

The epicenter of ancient trade routes, Venice retains a complex array of fragrances and flavors in its cuisine. In my imagination, this spinach dish, which I tasted in a little restaurant alongside a relatively quiet canal, just might be able to trace its heritage to the spice-laden caravans of Marco Polo's time. To make the journey full circle, use a Chinese wok ― it's the perfect pan for quickly wilting the voluminous fluff of dark green leaves.

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