Shore and Townsend, the associate directors of Share Our Strength (a hunger-relief organization that will receive all authors' proceeds), have come up with a more sensible version of the fancy star-chef book by asking 44 of America's finest chefs to create menus that reflect the way they cook for themselves on their nights off. Because so many people are involved, the selections are eclectic, but quality is consistently top-notch. Don't be misled by the folksy title: This is sophisticated fare, much of it suited for dinner parties. The meals are arranged alphabetically by chef, making for some strange bedfellows. Lidia Bastianich's ""Italian Dinner in America"" with polenta, braised beef, and cooked fruit precedes Rick Bayless's Mexican-flavored tomatillo-and-tomato soup and Drunken Beans with Tequila. Creativity flows like wine, from John Ash's crepes (dotted with basil and filled with a mixture of cheese and vegetables and then topped with lemon sauce) to Barbara Tropp's grape ice cream (laced with citrus zest and ginger juice). Boxes and headers provide useful extra information, and black-and-white photos of each of the contributors, and brief overviews of their careers and philosophies, add to the personal feel. Pay no attention to the old maxim: Here, many cooks make for a very rich and satisfying broth.