Ruth Samuelson, in residence with personal chef Monica Thomas, keeps churning out little tidbits:

*Don’t buy any tomato larger than a grape before July. Right now, in fact, is the worst time of the year to be bothering with tomatoes. Grape tomatoes: The only variety that’s good year-round.

*Stay healthy. If you’re cooking meat, or anything that has bacteria, you got issues, because your hands can be carrying that nasty stuff. One point of concern is that you’ll put those bacteria on your sink fixtures when you go to wash your hands. Solution: Get a sink pedal.

*If you want to add protein to dishes in which it’s scarce, take out that Cuisinart and prepare to puree. Tofu in its near-liquid form folds nicely into guacamole and hummus, not to mention vodka sauce, as a substitute for cream.

*The ultimate virgin olive oil: Yellingbo, from Australia.