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Originally published Sunday, May 30, 2010 at 7:01 PM

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Cookbooks for a 'green' kitchen and for dessert lovers

New cookbooks include "The Conscious Kitchen: The New Way to Buy and Cook Food — to Protect the Earth, Improve Your Health and Eat Deliciously" and "The Perfect Finish: Special Desserts for Every Occasion."

Chicago Tribune

Two books for inspiration in the kitchen:

GREEN CULINARY QUEEN: Author Alexandra Zissu didn't leave us with too many questions when she titled her tome: "The Conscious Kitchen: The New Way to Buy and Cook Food — to Protect the Earth, Improve Your Health and Eat Deliciously" (Clarkson Potter; $13.99, Borders.com). Why mince words, anyway? Zissu holds your hand on your quest to go green in the kitchen, guiding readers on matters such as when to buy organic, deciphering meat labels and avoiding pesticides and chemicals.

THE BEST FOR LAST: Draped in a glossy deep-red jacket (and a photo of a luscious, pristine strawberry shortcake), "The Perfect Finish: Special Desserts for Every Occasion," by Bill Yosses and Melissa Clark (W. W. Norton & Co.; $35, Amazon.com), is a grand addition to any baker's artillery. The book is organized by event type and has 123 color photos to inspire, so let White House executive pastry chef Yosses help you put your flour where your mouth is.

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