You may wonder just how many American peasants are apt to serve brochettes of mussels with curry sauce or even scallops in mustard mayonnaise--still, Meyers' glamorized ""peasant"" cuisine is less ersatz than most of the recent crop of cookbooks paying homage to those garden fresh vegetables that are harder to find on the supermarket shelf than pearls in canned oysters. Judging from this cookbook, the standard three-course, sit-down repasts of Middle America are as passe as last year's diet. Meyers has expanded the hors d'oeuvre to a complete meal, adapting and augmenting Scandinavian smorgasbords, Spanish tapas, and Provencal ratatouliles to where they become the centerpieces for informal lunches, buffet suppers or even little dinner parties. And she does make extensive use of such relatively inexpensive items as pigs' knuckles, sausages, chicken wings and herring in a lavish assortment of salads, ragouts, antipastos and one-dish meals each with a unique national or regional inflection. Thus: Sardinian eggplant, Russian sorrel soup, Balkan rice salad, Viennese spinach roulade.