Bringing diners in the door is difficult enough during good economic times. But as the recession prompts accountants to scream for fat-cutting measures, chefs are feeling more heat to shrink costs without sacrificing the quality that attracts customers. Or to put it crudely: It’s still the food, stupid.In response, chefs are analyzing everything—from purchasing practices to composting food scraps—and finding ways to still delight customers even as they seize opportunities to save.In the ...

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