Since this is the age of the confessional memoir, I'll confess right here and now that I fell in love last October. Not with a man or woman, but with a food market. There, it's out and I feel much better. Last October I set foot in a Whole Foods Market for the first time it was love at first sight, love at first bite. I was dazzled by the variety of everything edible and couldn't wait to sample the awesome array of prepared foods. After tasting a few, I wanted to duplicate them at home when I was parted from this pioneer of the natural foods movement. Now, with the publication of The Whole Foods Market Cookbook (Clarkson Potter, $25.95, 464 pages, ISBN 0609806440), I and anyone else who loves good food and inventive ideas for making it can do just that.
Unlike most supermarkets, the Whole Foods Markets have a philosophy that goes way beyond the bottom line. They believe in moving away from the over-processed and artificially flavored to offer consumers natural and organic foods with the purest flavor and the most nutritive value, and they believe in helping people understand and prepare them. So, the wholly committed Whole Foods folks have supplied 350 wide-ranging recipes from super starters to sweet endings with a variety of vegan and vegetarian dishes too that stress simple elegance and enhance flavors rather than camouflaging them. And you'll get a lot of extra help: there are savvy, advice-laden sidebars; recipe bonuses with ingredient alternatives and serving ideas; time-saving tips from the team and those necessary nutritional profiles. No love 'em and leave 'em here; this is a cookbook to use and peruse for long, long time.