The Cook's Magazine Cookbook (Simon & Schuster: $18.95, 288 pages).

The magazine's first cookbook is a reflection of the spirit of the magazine: American cuisine, the old and the new. Recipes are clearly written with easy-to-follow instructions that are numerically outlined. They include classic American favorites (such as gumbo, fried chicken, doughnuts) and innovative dishes that are developing in various regions through ethnic influences ( chorizo tortas , veal with shiitake mushroom sauce). Traditional favorites are also given a new look as in honey-poached pears and fresh pea soup with orange.

A bimonthly magazine, Cook's Magazine is favored by serious cooks for its up-to-date food news and research studies on cooking techniques, ingredients and kitchen equipment. The cookbook offers a little bit of all these, including an interesting history of great American dishes and some of their ingredients.

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