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COMPANY FARE by Ronald Johnson

COMPANY FARE

By Ronald Johnson

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 0-671-69510-X
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

 Johnson's very personal Simple Fare (1989) was a sort of sophisticated take on humble, if not retro, fare. Here, though the preparations are still pretty simple, the dishes get a little fancier (Johnson begins with a tribute to Alice Waters's hot goat- cheese salad from Chez Panisse and goes on to a paean to caviar and a lot of dishes with French names)--or at least trendier, with all those Italian starters and twists like arugula instead of the conventional coleslaw served with Maryland crab cakes. Many pages of sauced fish (much of it with wine, most of it with butter, some of it with cream), both meat and chicken in what he describes (while introducing pork) as ``a host of rather elegant ways,'' a whole section of gratins among the variety of side dishes, fruit pastries and other fruit desserts high in cream and sugar: From all of this, and without undue effort, you can surely put together company-worthy meals. In an age of gastronomic aftershock, if not exhaustion, that's probably enough for most home cooks.