Michele Anna Jordan. Ten Speed, $19.95 paper (240p) ISBN 1-58008-216-5

The prolific Jordan (The Good Cook's Book of Oil & Vinegar; California Home Cooking, etc.) shares a bit of the Bay Area's prodigious seafood and cultural wealth in her new collection of contemporary recipes from some of the most popular restaurants and chefs that she knows from her years as a food writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Departing from her previous books, which included her own recipes, here Jordan features a handful of recipes from 31 popular eateries. Her personal affection for the restaurants and chefs she includes is infectious. To highlight San Francisco's seafood specialties, Jordan waxes rhapsodic over such rare dishes as the opulent Skate Wings with Artichoke Salad and Caper-Lemon Brown Butter, from Charles Nob Hill, and sautéed John Dory with Braised Leeks, Wild Mushrooms and Artichokes, from Fringale. Rich and cosmopolitan in style, the book includes the classic Slow Club's Sea Bass with Apples, Currants and Warm Frisée Salad, the Asian-influenced Carpaccio of Bluefin Tuna with Shiitake and Haricot Vert Salad from MC2, Latin-style Black Cod with Roasted Potatoes, Sweet Onions, Pisco Sauce and Pumpkin Seed Gremolata from Che, Spanish-flavored Fresh Dungeness Crab with Sofrito from Pintxos and a heavenly Savory Black Mussel Soufflé from Aqua. While there are no inspirational photographs, Jordan has chosen a humbler, more affordable approach by using simple illustrations and by writing with a careful awareness of the home-cook's kitchen and equipment limitations. Agent, Amy Rennert. (Jan.)