Chefs Collaborative members like Alice Waters and Rick Bayless say that you should only use fresh, preferably organically grown produce harvested by local farmers. Yet, as the Wall Street Journal’s weekend section reports, it’s almost impossible to find the ingredients listed in cookbooks written by celebrity chefs. As the Journal says, despite their “use local ingredients” rhetoric, “most restaurant chef-authors have a staff that hunts ingredients down for them. For these guys, Federal Express-ing donut peaches in from California or tuna roe from Italy is completely normal.”

Food writer Irene Sax sympathizes with those of us who can’t afford to ship in ingredients from all around the country like Chefs Collaborative members do. She says, “I call it the Alice Waters syndrome.” Sax is so fed up with the trend that she’s started rating cook books on how user-friendly they are and estimating the percentage of recipes in a given book that a home cook might actually use. For instance, Sax says you’ll use only 20% of Bayless’ recipes in one of his latest books. They’re not too hard to make…that is, if you use Bayless’ specially prepared line of ingredients (on sale at an organic marketer