New York Times columnist Burros turns her considerable skills toward mostly family fare recipes that conform to new dietary guidelines but resist the slur, ``healthy.'' Beginning with the reminder, ``Food is not medicine,'' Burros provides recipes for simple and complete one- or two-course meals, requiring 30 minutes or less, that combine such basics as chicken and potatoes with arugula, quinoa and other newcomers to the plate. Each meal is presented succinctly and includes both nutritional information and a not always necessary ``Game Plan'' which, suggesting the quickest way to dinner, is useful for the novice. In chapters arranged by main ingredient (of the main course), are such simple, low-fat dishes as Asparagus Vinaigrette and more surprising suggestions, like Potato Salad with Smoked Salmon, served with Eggplant Tahini. Other notables include Grilled Soft Fish Tacos, Uncovered Empanadas (with beef) and Plum Buttermilk Sherbet. Fore and back matter includes discussions of the FDA's Food Guide Pyramid, mail-order resources and food-safety tips. Representative of Burros's knowledgeable, good-sense approach is her suggestion that both flavor and fat-content concerns are often served better by using a little high-quality cheese than lots of a low-fat version. HomeStyle and QPB alternates; 15-city author tour. (May)
Here are more quick menus from the author of the New York Times "Eating Well" column and 20-Minute Menus (LJ 3/15/89), among other cookbooks. These are low-fat, low-cholesterol, low-sodium menus from Burros's column, for an entre and, generally, one side dish, designed to be prepared in 20 to 30 minutes; despite the game plan accompanying each one, the timing is rather tight on at least a few of them. And family cooks may be disconcerted to find most menus serve only two. The recipes range from Lentil Baba Ghanouj to Hungarian Chicken with Peppers to Chinese Pork Tenderloin. Many of the menus seem just the thing for busy health-conscious cooks, but some feature rather odd combinations (e.g., Cumni Pork and Orange Orzo and Corn, served with Tomatoes, Basil, and Goat Cheese). Nevertheless, Burros has many fans, and her subject ensures demand.
Pierre Franey started the quick-fix-but-good-food trend with his 60-Minute Gourmet series. Now "New York Times" columnist Burros not only continues the good work, but also manages to shave off another 30 minutes or so. Along with her more than 100 menus (usually a two-dish meal) comes information in large doses about the latest do's and don'ts in nutrition, such as the efficacy of vitamin supplements and government food regulations. Best, of course, are the recipes, drawn from world-class restaurants and cuisines and all guaranteed as low fat. A game plan for each recipe helps the novice and experienced home chef easily master the art of speed cuisine.