Show 350, December 7, 2019: EAT, LAUGH, TALK! – The Family Dinner Playbook Part One

Shelly London of the Family Dinner Project“In the age of video chats and filtered “selfies”, sometimes real, human connection seems harder to come by, but it remains an important part of living a satisfying life. In fact, over 20 years of research has shown what parents have known for a long time: regular family meals lead to long-term benefits, including higher resilience, self-esteem, and grade-point-averages, and LOWER rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy, eating disorders, and depression.”

Eat, Laugh, Talk: The Family Dinner Playbook52 Weeks of Easy Recipes, Engaging Conversation, and Hilarious Games emerges from the brains behind The Family Dinner Project, a Massachusetts General Hospital Psychiatry Academy-affiliated nonprofit that notes the profound impact that a fun family meal can have on the spirit, brain, and health of all family members.”

“The Family Dinner Project’s new book gives readers the tools to kickstart a habit of putting together fun family dinners, including:

  • Conversation starters
  • Quick and easy recipes
  • Fun table games for everyone to play
  • Tips for overcoming obstacles, setting dinnertime goals, managing busy schedules, and engaging everyone in the conversation”

“With anecdotes from real families who have become a part of The Family Dinner Project’s growing movement, this book will inspire readers of all ages to look forward to dinner (together)!”

Co-authors (there are five) Brianne DeRosa and Shelly London join us to set the table.


Show 269, April 14, 2018: Chef Andrew Gruel’s “Ask the Chef”

Andrew and William GruelOur always informed Co-Host, Chef Andrew Gruel, is back in-studio and continues with his Ask the Chef series.

Today it’s Butter 411. These days butter is a bit of a maligned cooking fat. Olive oil seemingly reigns supreme. It really can be better with butter as Julia Child told us over the years. Butter adds taste and flavor to recipes and a modest amount can go a long way.

We’ll reflect on this as Chef Andrew puts the butter churn aside and has the flavorful specifics for us.



Show 260, February 10, 2018: Celebrity Trainer Simi Cohen, Sima’s Healthy Indulgences. Continues…

Sima CohenSima Cohen is a celebrity trainer, nutritionist, wellness expert, and life coach with more than twenty years’ experience. In her life journey she learned the important elements that govern and Add Newinfluence health and happiness. Her new book is Sima’s Healthy Indulgence – 100 Revampred, Guilt-Free Recipes to Transform Your Life.

When clients said they had a sweet tooth, or they were hungry for their latest diet’s “no-no food” and wanted to eat without the guilt that came with it, something immediately clicked in Sima’s mind, and she knew that she had to create a perfect, life-changing meal plan for them. This book is the ultimate guide to guiltless freedom that you can celebrate every day, without any depriving, compromising, counting calories, or measuring body fat!

She perfected her method to help people from all walks of life discover these elements that pave the way for achieving sustainable health and happiness in life: selfsweat, and substance. Her expertise in nutrition (substance) and fitness (sweat) has helped thousands of overweight individuals achieve ideal weight—the culinary part of that work resulted in the creation of this book.

Sima resides in Los Angeles, California, with her daughter Kayla.


Show 252, December 16, 2017: Barbecue Whisperer Meathead Goldwyn, Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling

Meathead GoldwynLast year we got a terrific response to Meathead Goldwyn’s MEATHEAD: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling. Goldwyn is also the founder of, the hugely popular grilling and barbecue website known for applying the latest scientific research to America’s favorite form of cooking.

Goldwyn first began his food and drink career as a soda jerk in his parents’ Sarasota restaurant where is father affectionately nicknamed him Meathead. In MEATHEAD, he reveals in full but accessible detail, the science behind the interaction of fire and food, with foolproof techniques, researched results on hardware, and 118 mouthwateringly, satisfying, and thoroughly tested recipes.

After consulting with scientists, Meathead shatters many of the myths that hang around barbecue lore, oftentimes standing in the way of perfection.

“Remember, almost anything you can cook indoors can be cooked outdoors, only better,” Meathead writes. “All it takes is the four P’s : practice, patience, persistence, and a knowledge of key cooking principles.”

In the Holiday spirit Meathead is back with us, and generously gave away a copy of MEATHEAD: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling.



Show 224, May 20, 2017: Deborah Madison, Icon of Vegetarian Cuisine Part Two

Deborah MadisonFrom perhaps the foremost authority on vegetarian cooking and one of the most trusted voices in food comes a carefully curated and updated collection of 100 favorite and most inspired recipes, reflecting how Deborah Madison loves to cook now. Her new book is In My Kitchen – A Collection of New and Favorite Vegetarian Recipes.

In My Kitchen is Deborah’s most personal cookbook. It takes you inside her home, reflecting how she cooks and eats today – with sophisticated and layered recipes that have been pared down and perfected after years of refinement. The more than one hundred recipes included here showcase Deborah’s style of carefully considered, forgiving, and endlessly adaptable recipes – perfect as they are, but also ripe for modification and improvisation.


Show 193, October 15, 2016: Katie Chin, Chinese food authority and best-selling author

Katie ChinCulinary celebrity Katie Chin is a prominent Chinese food expert and best-selling author. Her newest cookbook is Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook: 101 Delicious Recipes from My Mother’s Kitchen. The book pays homage to Katie’s late Mother, the legendary chef and restaurateur, Leeann Chin.

Author Katie Chin’s love of cooking blossomed at an early age—watching and later helping her renowned mother, Leeann Chin, prepare delicious Chinese dishes in her popular restaurants. Born in China, Leeann was an award-winning restaurateur and author revered for her ability to demystify Chinese cooking for the American home cook. Katie inherited her mom’s passion and talent, and has become a respected food writer and television personality in her own right. Sadly, Leeann passed away in 2010, but her recipes live on. Katie is eager to share her mother’s food legacy with you in this book—an homage to Leeann’s mastery of all that Chinese cooking has to offer.

This treasury of family recipes includes many unique dishes that Leeann developed during a six-decade career in the food business, including time-honored classics that she herself learned from her mother in China. Some dishes reflect Leeann’s Chinese-American childhood or are recipes which Katie and Leeann developed while together. Others are creations that Katie has developed more recently. Woven throughout the book are fond memories and anecdotes from Katie’s childhood, always involving cooking and eating with her mom.

Katie Chin is our guest.



Show 189, September 17, 2016: Amy Guittard, Marketing Director, Guittard Chocolate Company

Amy GuittardWell-crafted chocolate has been the Guittard family business and a San Francisco favorite for nearly 150 years. This rich history is captured in Guittard Chocolate CookbookDecadent Recipes from San Francisco’s Premium Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Company.

With 50 tempting photographs and 60 simple recipes for every kind of indulgence, Amy Guittard, in the Guittard Chocolate Cookbook, presents tried-and-true favorite recipes from five generations of Guittards, ranging from start-your-day-right Chocolate Cherry Scones to fudgey Mocha Cookies and deep, dark Chocolate Caramel Pecan Bundt Cake. Leave it to the people who really know chocolate to make a collection of recipes that are sure to make every chocolate lover long for one bite more.

The classic chocolate recipes in the book are easy-to-follow and doable by the home cook. Many are family recipes proven over generations. For the more ambitious there in the Chef’s Chapter from Guittard’s resident, world class executive pastry chef, Donald Wressell (ex-Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills as opening Executive Pastry Chef). “Chef Donald has a deft touch with chocolate, and brings a chef’s sensibilities to these desserts.” “He explains his recipes clearly, so even a beginning baker can make these with good results.” Look for his well-tested recipe for Grandma’s Chocolate Cake. It’s a classic that comes along with a great story…

Author Amy Guittard (Guittard’s Marketing Director) is our guest. She is the great-great-granddaughter of the founder of the Guittard Chocolate Company and the company’s marketing director. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Show 113, March 7, 2015: Cheryl Forberg, R.N. – Nutritionist for NBC’s “The Biggest Loser.”

Cheryl Forberg RDNew York Times best-selling author, James Beard award-winning Chef and Nutritionist for NBC’s The Biggest Loser, Cheryl Forberg, R.D. shares her culinary and weight loss secrets including two weeks of menus and 25 scrumptious recipes in A Small Guide to Losing Big – From the Nutritionist for NBC’s “The Biggest Loser.”

After 15 seasons as the nutritionist for NBC’s The Biggest Loser. Cheryl Forberg, R.D. has uncovered stunning facts about typical eating and lifestyle habits that cause millions of Americans to gain thousands of pounds each year. Cheryl also knows how to interpret that information to promote weight loss.

We’ve all seen the amazing success of the hundreds of people she has helped “behind the scenes” at “The Biggest Loser” – and now the secrets and insights of one of the country’s top weight loss experts are shared in A Small Guide To Losing Big.

Cheryl Forberg, R.D. joins us with a lot of good, practical information.


Show 99, November 29, 2014: Corporate Chef Ida Rodriguez, Melissa’s Produce

Chef Ida Rodriquez of Melissas World Variety ProduceMelissa’s Produce adds another useful and informative cookbook to the company’s growing series, each devoted to one fresh ingredient. Newly published is DYPs – The Perfect Everyday Potato Cookbook. The Dutch Yellow Potato (DYP) is the perfect cooking potato with its creamy texture, buttery flavor and year-round availability.

Since the DYP is available twelve months of the year, the consistency of this year-round supply is what this cookbook celebrates. There are 154 recipes (including desserts,) grouped according to the four seasons of the year, incorporating the fresh harvests of the day to enhance, support and combine with the DYP.

The Dutch Yellow Potato is grown exclusively for Melissa’s by their grower-partner in the Magic Valley region of Southern Idaho. DYPs remain dense and moist when cooked. The variety also cooks a lot quicker than other kinds of potatoes. The naturally small and uniform size of the Dutch Yellow is another characteristic that makes the variety a useful culinary tool.

Co-author and Melissa’s Corporate Chef, Ida Rodriguez, joins us. She just returned from a trip to Spain and was surprised to observe how prominent potatoes are in the Spanish diet. There are even a couple of Spanish-inspired recipes (Papas Bravas) in the DYPs book.


Show 83, August 9, 2014: The 12 Bottle Bar

David and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson“A new kind of cocktail book, The 12 Bottle Bar, distills the craft cocktail movement for the home bar. Irresistibly uncomplicated, just 12 bottles create over 200 distinct and seasonal cocktails, including beer and wine cocktails.”

David Solmonson and Lesley Jacobs Solmonson, the husband-and-wife authors (and noted cocktail enthusiasts) are with us.

“We’re living in the midst of a cocktail renaissance – artisanal cocktails. Celebrity mixologists, drink menus that outshine wine lists and feature ingredients as fresh and complex as the most sought after meals. Just as home cooks have looked to popular restaurants and chefs for new recipes, imbibers want to bring the magic of a local speakeasy straight to the living room.”