cover image Cooking with Master Chefs

Cooking with Master Chefs

Julia Child. Knopf Publishing Group, $21.95 (160pp) ISBN 978-0-679-74829-8

This handsomely designed book, a companion to the new PBS television series, brings acclaimed chefs out of the restaurant and into their own home kitchens with characteristic dishes and singular stylishness. And as Child ( The Way to Cook ) observes, though readers may not be equipped to mimic these achievements exactly, we can indeed ``gather ideas'' from the recipes and apply them as we're able, with the aid and inspiration of 80 photographs. The lineup is brilliant, including Jacques Pepin, Alice Waters, Patrick Clark, Andre Soltner and 12 others; and it covers as much geographic as gastronomic ground, from Hawaii (one recipe by chef Amy Ferguson-Ota incorporates ``ti'' leaves, which grow wild there) to New Orleans. Reading soon enough becomes a form of voyeurism, possibly even better than dining, particularly when one turns to a Provencal tapenade, courtesy of Chez Panisse's proprietor, or to Michel Richard's ``Chocolate Dome'' with raspberry sauce. And of course, coming from Child, the book is well and warmly written. About a pasta dish by Lida Bastianich, incorporating broccoli de rape , she comments, ``This lovely dish shows what can happen to tough old greens if you treat them right.'' Author tour. Illustrated. (Oct.)