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Chunky Monkey

The Flying Monkey Patisserie now has a signature cupcake: moist chocolate cake stuffed with banana and buttercream, topped with creamy chocolate frosting. Like all the bakery's chocolate cupcakes, the cake is a "war bride" recipe, dating back to the 1940s, full of rich cocoa flavor, but not overly sweet. With hints of ripe banana lingering in each bite, and a smooth, buttery frosting, it's hard to imagine a more delectable namesake.

- Kirstin Lindermayer
Signature cupcake, $2 at Flying Monkey Patisserie, Reading Terminal Market, 215- 928-0340.

Herb keeper

Extend the life of pricey fresh herbs. Keep up to three bunches hydrated and fragrant for up to three weeks, their stems sipping from the water reservoir of a 10-inch acrylic holder. Refrigerate or keep handy on a counter or windowsill.

- Marilynn Marter

Fresh Herb Keeper, 10-by-3-inches, $14.99. At Kitchen Kapers or www. kitchenkapers.com.

Renaissance table art

Since the 16th century, artisans in Deruta in Italy's Umbria region have been known for their handcrafted pottery.

Bring history to your table with a pitcher in an authentic Grazia family design dating back to the Renaissance, with the colors and characteristic glaze of the region's majolica earthenware. From the Deruta dinnerware collection.

- M.M.
Deruta pottery pitcher, 7.5-inch, $29.95. A Sur La Table exclusive.