Picks and Pans Review: To the Good Life!

updated 12/10/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/10/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

by Annemarie Huste

"When serving drinks, generosity is not necessarily a virtue," Huste writes. So much for the good life chez die. This advice is part of Annemarie's preamble, which tells the socially inexperienced how to hire help, select wines and fold napkins in a lotus-blossom design. Skip to the recipes, the simple ones especially: chicken with thyme, lemon chicken, choucroute garnie. They are crisply written and elegantly presented.

Huste, who cooked for Jacqueline Kennedy after she left the White House, is at her best with throwaway information: Don't use strong-flavored fish such as mackerel in fish stock; cover unused truffles with Madeira before refrigerating (you do use truffles, don't you?); New Zealand lamb is more muttony than American lamb. Huste makes two factual errors: Chicken Marengo was served to Napoleon after the Battle of Marengo, not Waterloo; English afternoon tea and high tea are not synonymous. High tea, a substitute for dinner, is lower-class. (Abrams, $35)

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