A Lucullan presentation -- 839 pages with line decorations sharing the wide side margins with the ingredients -- all, as intentionally stated, presenting/preserving our heritage of American cookery here and there touched up with the cuisine of the Provence or Polynesia or wherever. From cocktails to, ten pounds later, candy you will find substantial, essentially conservative dishes only here and there graced with more daring enterprises (how to broil a squirrel or string those neglected chicken hearts on a skewer). Small touches are helpful (tomatoes for that favorite of all salads should not be chilled before serving) and there are nice referrals from the past amplified in the selected reading list which appends. Mr. Beard is not too concerned with costs (evident in his categorization of calf's liver under Veal Offal) or calories but the recipes take only a reasonable amount of time. They are explicit enough for the beginning cook although the insecure hostess might have liked to be forewarned about how much serves how many. Expectably, Mr. Beard is staunch on pies and cakes and the whole book smacks of a justified largesse.