by Sybil PrattMarch 2007
Fostering fine fast food
There's a lot of advice in a lot of cookbooks about getting decent dinners on the table in breakneck time 20 minutes, 30 minutes, sometimes less. But I've come to think that home cooked fast food is more about attitude and approach than beating the clock. Sara Foster's latest, Casual Cooking: More Fresh Simple Recipes from Foster's Market is big on both attitude and approach and it's packed with over 100 inventive, flexible recipes that back up Sara's belief that you can pull together delicious, satisfying meals in whatever brief time you have. Her supper-savvy ways don't follow the outmoded meat, starch, green, plus salad model; salads can be meals, so can sandwiches, quesadillas and eggs. In fact, there's a chapter on each of those categories, as well as a healthy helping of more conventional dinner dishes featuring chicken, beef, lamb, shrimp, fish and ever-popular pasta, all meant to be everyday one-dish wonders, plus a sprinkling of quick-to-fix, full-flavored extras (see recipe below). Sara garnishes the recipes with her insider's info ways to trim time with packaged ingredients, suggestions for adding and altering ingredients, ideas for what to serve with what, and her special tips, the tricks of the trade that make you a smarter cook.