by Sybil PrattMarch, 2004
A chef celebrates cities
We're in luck Weir is back. Joanne Weir that is, the award-winning chef, cooking teacher and author who took us through California's wine country in two previous books and her PBS cooking series. Now, we're doing the metropolitan scene in her new Weir Cooking in the City: More Than 125 Recipes and Inspiring Ideas for Relaxed Entertaining. Joanne's city is San Francisco, that fabulous foodie Mecca, ever-infatuated with wining and dining. But Joanne doesn't limit herself to one city; she wants to open our urban eyes and taste buds to the almost infinite variety of choice and diversity in the modern cities of our American melting pot. And she understands that even though many city dwellers cook in cramped kitchens, they still want to entertain at home, far from the madding crowd. So, follow Joanne through the neighborhoods; then, with her good guidance, make the dishes that dazzle, that satisfy yearnings for the simple and the sophisticated, in your own kitchen. For starters, Joanne shines her bright city lights on planning for impromptu gatherings or more formal candlelit dinners and on setting up the "essential city pantry," with its Latin, Asian and Mediterranean variations. Then it's on to the recipes: Phyllo Pizza with Feta and Tomatoes; Gravlax with Spring Salad; Soy-Marinated Flank Steak paired with Wasabe Mashed Potatoes; creamy Caramelized Oranges with Rice Custard. In Joanne's city, street smart now means eat smart and well.