Chef Costello boils down the essence of cooking

Tue Aug 4, 2009 10:34am EDT
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By Richard Leong

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - Chef Lauren Braun Costello believes knowing the highest standards of cooking produces the best dishes. The 32 year-old New York native co-wrote "Notes on Cooking" with Russell Reich, a former student. The book contains 217 nuggets of tips, insights and advice on cooking.

Costello, who is also a teacher and a food stylist, spoke to Reuters about food writing and her view on cooking.

Q: What do you want people to take away from your book?

A: "There is more to cooking than the recipe and the ingredients they are using. There is a way of thinking and feeling your way through the kitchen."

Q; How tough was it to structure your thoughts on cooking in this concise format?

A: "The book was written with the most essential information. We assigned categories and divided them up. It was less forcefully structured. It was more free-flowing. We let the content speak for itself."

Q; What is your view on short-cuts like using store-bought stocks and sauces, which are prevalent on TV cooking shows?

A: "Everybody's lifestyles are different. Everybody's needs are different and everybody's interests are different. But we have to have standards. But it's okay to fall short of those standards. I fall short of those standards. At least we know what our anchor is."   Continued...

<p>Chef Lauren Braun Costello is shown in this undated handout photo. REUTERS/Nicole Braun Carrasco/Wink</p>