I’m categorizing these two recipes together because 1. they’re both very simple and 2. good as they are, they are only marginally “recipes” in my mind.

First, Arugula Salad: 

Nothing more than toasted slices of baguette with cheese and sun-dried tomatoes on them with a basic salad with basic vinaigrette.  She says the crostini are like mini-pizzas that kids love and I won’t disagree with that.  It’s just that, in case you’re wondering Gwyneth? this is the type of thing that makes people question your appearance on the cover of Bon Appetit.  With very naughty and hurtful comments.  Not me Gwyneth, other people.  I will say that she includes a very handy and easy recipe for oven-drying tomatoes in this book; a great trick for the 10 months out of the year when all we have are tasteless red orbs masquerading as tomatoes.  And this looks really nice, doesn’t it?

Next, the Playwright’s Melt.  I would say this is a glorified grilled cheese sandwich but I don’t see much glory in it.  Of course it’s delicious; it’s cheese, scallions, olives and Veganese (or mayonnaise for those of us without a Veganese fetish) tossed together, sprinkled on an english muffin and toasted under the broiler.  But I would no sooner include it in a cookbook than I would the potato chip sandwiches I indulged in as a kid.  Still, it’s hard to hate anything with cheese.

Two handy little numbers to have up your sleeve and definitely kid-friendly.

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