December 12, 1994 12:00 PM

by Paula Wolfert

Wolfert, an award-winning food writer, once again demonstrates her insatiable appetite for research with encyclopedic accounts of Byzantine ways to approach such Mediterranean staples as lamb, yogurt and lentils. Nor does she ignore less familiar fare like pomegranates, quinces and sumac (astringent red berries, often crushed as a garnish). Cooks who are new to this ancient cuisine will find Wolfert an indispensable if sometimes wordy guide. (HarperCollins, $30)

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