Savoring Writing Good Enough to Eat
'Flavor, in Italian dishes, builds up from the bottom. It is not a cover, it is a base. In a pasta sauce, a risotto, a soup, a fricassee, a stew, or a dish of vegetables, a foundation of flavor supports, lifts, points up the principal ingredients. To grasp this architectural principle central to the structure of much Italian cooking, and to become familiar with the three key techniques that enable you to apply it, is to take a long step toward mastering Italian taste. The techniques are known as battuto, soffritto and insaporire.'
--from Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, by Marcella Hazan. We admit to never having heard of her or her work until reading this recent profile of Marcella and her husband.