From Publishers Weekly
Having trained thousands of professional chefs, the CIA addresses home cooks here in an effort to "cultivate a passion for cooking" despite today's hectic pace. With an emphasis on a multiplicity of ethnic flavors, the recipes are largely familiar and manageable. In fact, many of the simpler ones (Vichyssoise, Romaine and Grapefruit Salad with Walnuts and Stilton; Ratatouille; and Tiramisu) may be found in scores of other cookbooks. However, such dishes as Lobster and Roasted Red Pepper Salad, and Pesto-Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Relish seem rather ambitious when described as "meals in minutes." And suggesting the use of premade phyllo dough as a prime ingredient in Fennel and Chorizo Strudels, or packaged puff pastry dough in Fresh Fruit Galette, undercuts the book's premise. Oddly for home cooking, nearly every recipe serves eight. Still, there are dozens of quick and easy recipes, such as Niçoise-Style Grilled Tuna and Cider-Braised Pork Medallions. Presentation is often a key aspect, as in Haricots Verts with Prosciutto and Gruyère, in which prosciutto slices are twisted into spirals to resemble roses. CIA fans, who include viewers of PBS's Cooking Secrets from the CIA
, will turn to this book. Others may find that it does not entirely fulfill its promise. 125 color photos.
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