Hints for Eating Mashed Potatoes on Holidays

When my husband and I are invited to Thanksgiving dinner he insists I bring mashed potatoes.  He has to make sure there will be at least one bowl of mashed potatoes on the buffet. Borderline rude. I…


Breaking Thanksgiving Tradition

Everyone has their Thanksgiving traditions; especially when it comes to food. My husband, for example has to have his mashed potatoes. On occasions when we’ve been invited over to the neighbors'…


Turkey Tips

Most people think the Thanksgiving turkey dinner is the most intimidating meal to make. I never understood that. For Thanksgiving, there was always a crowd at my childhood home. At least a dozen…


How to Cheat on Your Diet at Thanksgiving

Whether you’re on Plan Z (or any other diet), the holidays can be difficult. Even if you have solid discipline, your relatives and friends can try to sabotage you. Most of us don’t have great…


My Favorite Appliance

Gone are the days when I would regularly pull out my big food processor, or my massive mixer, or my mondo blender that could mix up 12 cups of liquid in an instant. Even my bread maker is gone. I’ve…


The Art of the Antipasti Tray

What's antipasti? It's an appetizer consisting of an assortment of foods, such as smoked meats, cheese, fish, and vegetables. Sounds like a low-carb platter of perfection, doesn’t it? I love to build…


Toys for Halloween

I don’t give out candy on Halloween anymore. I give out toys! The kids love it. They like to see something different in that basket.  When they dip in, I tell them they can pick a toy or even two.…


What to Buy and When

This year I am really paying attention to food prices and availability. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and holiday food conversation is all the buzz. One good piece of news is this year…


Little Green Orbs

Truth be told, the first four decades of my life I HATED Brussels sprouts. I thought they smelled bad and tasted even worse. Until one day… Actually, it was evening. I had taken my whole staff out…


How to Buy Stevia

Shopping for sweetener options can be a scary and overwhelming decision-making process. The number of sweeteners designed to replace sugar is growing by the day. It can make you dizzy standing in…


The “Hummers”

The hummingbirds visiting my balcony have been the highlight of my summer. Then “POOF”. They are gone! Hummingbirds (also known for their nickname “hummers”), gorge themselves in order to double…


Countdown to Thanksgiving

The countdown has begun... And the clock is ticking. If you’re going to do Plan Z this year, I’m guessing you’ll want to be well into ZReboot for Thanksgiving. Won’t you? Plan Z is fast — up to four…


Walking the Bridge

What will I be doing to celebrate Labor Day? I’ll be walking the bridge. That’s what my husband and I call it. The Walking Bridge. Technically it’s called The Walnut Street Bridge. That’s because…


Food on the floor

My niece sent me a picture the other day of her 7 month-old baby Thalia eating in her high chair. Was all that mush food? Why was it spread all over the surface of the high chair? And what was that…


How to Buy Spaghetti Sauce

People write to me all the time and they say something like this: “You taught me how to read labels as part of dieting. I had no idea how many products have sugar in them! I now know sugar is…


Smash Burgers

Plan Z Phase: This is a Z3 (ZReboot) recipe Smash burgers are all the rage. Step into a brew pub and you’ll likely find a smash burger on the food menu. These are NOT the huge, 8oz burgers we’ve been…


How to Buy Sparkling Water

Have you noticed how water is all the rage now? Everyone is drinking it. Bottled. Canned. It’s everywhere. When I was a kid the only bottled water available in the grocery store was distilled…


'Cue Tips

For lots of people, cooking in the summer revolves around the barbecue. The stereotypical vision is a guy with a slightly rounded belly standing barbecue ready, favorite beverage in one hand and a…


Let's Have a Snack...Or Not!

When I was 9 years old I was given permission to make my own favorite snack of the summer. It was called Jello 1- 2 -3. Strawberry was my favorite. I liked all three layers. Foam on top, sauce in the…


Sprinkler Day

Here’s a last minute idea for your Fourth of July celebration (or you can do it any day in the summer). There’s a kiddie element to this celebration and an adult portion later on. In my old…