When olive oil turns out to be good for you, something's still right with the world. The current view, in case you've been napping, is that this and other monounsaturated fats are better than the previously recommended polyunsaturates because they lower total and ""bad"" LDL cholesterol but not HDL, the protective, ""good"" cholesterol. Of course, with Italian cookbooks still endlessly pouring forth--and with no shortage of those from other Mediterranean cuisines--recipes using olive oil are already abundant; and a few, most notably those in Martha Rose Shulman's Mediterranean Light (1989), already take a reduced-fat, health-conscious tack without sacrificing lusty flavor. Schlesinger and Earnest actually violate tradition by using olive oil in several Chinese fish recipes and other ""Oriental""--style dishes. Overall, though, they offer an eclectic but Mediterranean-dominated range of decent, uncomplicated dishes for health-conscious mainstream diners. In addition, the introductory chapters offer a good summary of the medical case for olive oil, as well as some informative background on the making of olive oil and the meanings of that peculiar term ""extra virgin.