Editor's Choice

Editor's Choice

March 16, 2003|By Michael Pakenham

The American Diner Cookbook, by Elizabeth McKeon and Linda Everett. Cumberland House. 256 pages. $16.95.

I confess to a latent susceptibility to Camp, and can there by Higher Camp than diners, and diner food? While sadly weak on Maryland diners -- only one, Baltimore's Overlea -- this compendium of the presence and menus of 100 diners across the United States includes some 450 recipes. You might try hogwaller or bejeweled carrots or Dorothy Jean's Dropped Biscuits. But, more likely, you will find very straightforward, very on-the-road American ways of preparing standard fare --- the most basic elements of the mid-range diet of a century of eating out reasonably. Not fancy, but filling and familiar. A perfect source of antidotes for Turkish-Cambodian Crosscultural Fusion Cuisine.

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