At the end of each recipe in the Food section you'll find a breakdown of calories and nutrients.

These figures are generated by a computer program designed specifically for nutritional analysis. All information is based on figures from the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory.

To acquire the breakdown, we input the ingredients and the number of servings for a recipe, and the program, called Nutritionist Five (FirstDataBank) does the rest of the work. We analyze the results for each recipe to ensure that we have entered the correct amount of an ingredient. This sometimes requires informed guesswork, as in the case of a marinade in which half of the ingredients are drained and discarded.

In the event that we feel a recipe -- chicken stock, for example -- is too variable for meaningful analysis, we will state that rather than guess or misinform you.

Each recipe in the Food section -- whether it comes from a freelancer, chef, cookbook or other food publication -- has been tested for accuracy and appeal.

Our recipes are tried out in home kitchens -- in downtown galley kitchens and sprawling suburban kitchens -- using the same type of equipment that you use to cook.

Fewer than half of the recipes we try actually end up in the pages of Food because many of them are simply not good enough for our readers. Sometimes we make adjustments to a recipe until it meets our approval; this is what we mean when we say a recipe has been "adapted from" a particular source. But unless we can alter the results to our satisfaction, you will not see that recipe in our paper.