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Arthur Avenue: Shop For Food Like An Italian

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - In the latest episode of The Dig, CBS2's Elle McLogan takes a culinary tour of "Little Italy" in the Bronx. Her guide is Italian-born cook Beatrice Tosti, owner of East Village restaurant Il Posto Accanto.

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Here are Tosti's top shopping tips:

1. Know where your food comes from.

Tosti entrusts Calabria Pork Store with the cheese for her restaurant. "How amazing is it that you know the person that made the cheese? I am so happy to sell it and say, 'They made it in front of me,'" Tosti said. "Buying like this, there is some love. I believe in energy that goes in what we feed people. And I know that I love all the guys here. I know they're going to pick the best piece for me. I know they're not going to give me something that is not right."

2. Follow the crowd.

The Arthur Avenue Retail Market is heavily trafficked, which Tosti sees as a testament to the freshness of its products. "I like to shop in busy places because it means there's a lot of turnover."

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3. Find what's fresh.

Tosti visits Arthur Avenue at least once a week to select ingredients at the peak of freshness. When it comes to seafood, she has a strategy: "Usually, I poke it, so everybody hates me," she said. "It's not supposed to smell. It is supposed to be nice and glistening. It is supposed to [have] a clear eye."

4. Ask for help.

"Everybody [on Arthur Avenue] is so nice," she said. "I like to make [Pasta alla] Genovese in the winter, and I make it with veal. [Mike at Peter's Meat Market] is like, 'No, don't make it with veal. Make it with beef.' Everybody has their own little opinion on how to make things."

Randazzo's Seafood
2327 Arthur Avenue
Bronx, NY 10458

Peter's Meat Market
Arthur Avenue Retail Market
2344 Arthur Avenue
Bronx, NY 10458

Boiano Foods
Arthur Avenue Retail Market
2344 Arthur Avenue
Bronx, NY 10458

Calabria Pork Store
2338 Arthur Avenue
Bronx, NY 10458

What's something few people know about but everybody should? Whatever it is, Elle McLogan is tracking it down on The Dig. Join her hunt for treasures hidden across our area. Follow Elle on Twitter and Instagram.

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