The Joy of Pastry by David Munn (Barron's: $14.95, 227 pages, illustrated).

The dessert cart in fine restaurants seems to come alive in the 32-full page color photos in Barron's new addition to their best-selling cookbook series. Fancy European pastries from Napoleons to Gateau Saint Honore, as well as traditional American apple pie, brownies and cheesecakes, are included in the recipe repertoire.

Munn, a baking instructor at the New York Restaurant School, clearly spells out every recipe in large type with comprehensive but brief step-by-step directions. All sections (such as meringues, Danish pastries, pies and tarts) start with valuable suggestions. In the puff pastry chapter, Munn writes: "A common homebaker's mistake is rushing the cold butter into a soft dough. Remember that the butter must be as soft as the dough."

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