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Cookbook reviews by Larry Cox

‘Complete Book of Indian Cooking: 350 Recipes from the Regions of India’

By Suneeta Vaswani (Firefly, $27.95)

Since regional foods tend to be distinctive and influenced by local ingredients, a cookbook that features recipes from India is, as might be expected, exhilarating and exotic. What is not expected is that most are also fairly easy to prepare.

Suneeta Vaswani, who was born in Mumbai, India, has taught Indian cooking in the United States since the 1970s. The Houston-based cook and food writer serves up 350 recipes from the four distinctive regions of India. The recipes, which are designated by region within chapters, are also supplemented with an ingredient glossary, source information, and designations for the hotter dishes.

This excellent collection includes such favorites as Shrimp in Coconut Milk, Bhel Puri Chaat, South Indian Banana Fritters, Kashmiri Leg of Lamb, and an incredibly good Mango Citrus Chutney.

‘Bistro Laurent Tourondel: New American Bistro Cooking’

By Laurent Tourondel (Wiley, $34.95)

Laurent Tourondel is executive chef and partner in the BLT (Bistro Laurent Tourondel) Restaurant Group, which has more than nine restaurants in the United States and Puerto Rico. Named Bon Appetit magazine’s Restaurateur of the Year in 2007, the award-winning chef has helped redefine classic bistro fare in America.

His new collection includes exciting appetizers, intriguing salads, hearty soups, and mouth-watering desserts, in addition to vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, and pasta and risotto dishes. Renowned for his seafood, some of Tourondel’s standout dishes are the Seared Arctic Char with Shiitake-Ginger Vinaigrette and the more accessible Striped Bass with Curry Brown Butter.

In addition to more than 150 recipes, there are ingredient descriptions, professional tips, and serving suggestions.

‘Organic Marin: Recipes from Land to Table’

By Tim Porter and Farina Wong Kingsley (Andrews McMeel, $29.99)

California’s Marin County has become the culinary epicenter of organic foods. The region is considered no less than the birthplace of American organic farming. In this new collection, 16 organic farms are featured, along with 50 recipes organized by season and selected by 25 of the San Francisco Bay Area’s most popular organic restaurants.

Some of the more interesting recipes include Heirloom Tomato Flatbread, Roasted Red Pepper Bisque, Chicken Fra Diavolo with Fennel and Dandelion Salad, Gypsy Peppers Stuffed with Fromage Blanc, and a Puerto Rican-inspired Arroz con Pollo.

Tim Porter, a former assistant managing editor of the San Francisco Examiner, and Farina Wong Kindsley, a culinary instructor at Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco, serve up an incredible cookbook that underscores the fact that good food nourishes the body and enriches both the land and community.

‘Weight Watchers in 20 Minutes’

By the staff of Weight Watchers (Wiley, $29.95)

Weight Watchers staffers are convinced that eating good, nutritious home-cooked meals is possible even when prep time is at a premium.

They set out to prove their point by featuring 250 recipes, most of which can be prepared in 20 minutes or less. The up-to-date recipes incorporate elements of the new Weight Watchers Momentum program that uses Point Values as well as complete nutritional information.

Two special bonuses are included in each chapter: Time Savers so that even less experienced cooks can learn the smart, savvy way, and Filling Extras, which spotlights healthy ways to make meals more filling while staying on track and maintaining goals.

The eight main chapters include breakfast and noon day selections, main dishes that feature steak, chops, chicken, turkey, and fish, meatless suppers and sensational desserts. The book is published in a special spiral binding that makes using it in the kitchen a snap.

Tucsonan Larry Cox’s “Shelf Life” reviews of fiction and nonfiction books and his “Treasures and Trends” antiques column run Thursdays in Calendar Plus. For more, go to tucsoncitizen.com/calendar.
E-mail: contactlarrycox@aol.com

Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

In 2010, a power surge fried a server that contained all of videos linked to dozens of stories in this archive. Also, a server that contained all of the databases for dozens of stories was accidentally erased, so all of those links are broken as well. However, all of the text and photos that accompanied some stories have been preserved.

For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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