Braisingly fresh

Fish and vegetables pair up for a speedy meal

Like many cooks, Sam Gugino favors meals that come together quickly. But as a food editor and writer, he's not willing to sacrifice flavor to speed. Armed with the conviction that the two goals aren't diametrically opposed, he wrote Cooking to Beat the Clock: Delicious, Inspired Meals in 15 Minutes (Chronicle Books, San Francisco, 1999; $16.95; 800/722-6657 or www.chroniclebooks.com).

Gugino lets big flavors speak in his Asian-spiced salmon with braised bok choy. We liked the results so much that we've added variations on pan-browned, spice-rubbed fish to go with briefly braised greens. Gugino uses two frying pans; the greens get started in one while the fish cooks in the other. If you cook the greens first, then keep them warm while you brown the fish in the same pan, you add about 10 minutes to the cooking process but cut back on cleanup.

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