Cookbooks

Gift guide

Cookbooks

Fresh Every Day: More Great Recipes from Foster's Market

by Sara Foster with Carolynn Carreño

Clarkson/Potter, 288 pp., $35

My brain practically explodes every time I see commercials on television advertising gastric aids for children. C'mon: They're children; they've just been issued brand-new bodies. The only thing wrong with their digestion systems is that they are being fed a lot of prepackaged and fast foods that are, by definition, indigestible. Somebody cook these children a decent meal! But I know why this isn't happening; people are overworked and tired and busy, and most people just don't know how.

It's a daunting task to set yourself, teaching the American public how to cook again, and whether that's what she set out to do, Sara Foster achieves it in this extraordinarily useful cookbook. Not only does she give easy-to-follow, fabulous recipes, she also wants the reader to learn to "think like a cook," to learn how to improvise, and to truly know that it doesn't have to be time-consuming or laborious to feed yourself and your family. Most of the recipes take less than 30 minutes to prepare, and it's nutritious, beautiful, exciting, fresh, wholesome food!

Foster holds nothing back: Every food "Basic," such as roasting garlic or making bread crumbs, is covered, as well as professional "Tricks" that make cooking easier and faster. There are shopping and serving tips, advice on using leftovers, and alternate versions of many of the recipes to accommodate the seasons of the year. Most impressive of all, the wealth of information is never daunting or overwhelming. Just leafing through this engaging book (which has scads of beautiful photographs) will make even a reluctant cook eager to rediscover the kitchen.

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