Book Review – Cooking For David (for dialysis patients)


Posted by Jennifer (the RD) on April 19, 2013

“Cooking for David” is a book I use as a dietitian all the time.  It is a very unique, and essential book for patients or families of patients on dialysis.  The recipes ALL have Renal and diabetic specific nutrition information.  It takes the guess work out of planning meals for dialysis patients.  There are plenty of comfort food recipes along with a chapter for sauces, gravies, and seasonings so you can do some experimenting on your own!

It is written by a dear friend, Sara Colman, RD, CDE and a nurse she collaborated with,  Dorothy Gordon, BS, RN.  For all of you RDs out there…buy a copy as a reference and make sure  you keep this handy.  There’s a great introductory chapter that includes really simple educational material for the renal diet.  It’s super helpful.

♥ ♥

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Book Review

Posted by Jennifer (the RD) on February 9, 2013


This is a book that I actually used as part of the reading materials for one of the courses I teach.  For the most part, it is a good, easy to read reference, but there are some negatives.

GOOD THINGS:  The book is easy to read, and the information is evidence based.  The book is written by an RD, so that’s a defininte plus!  There are lots of topics covered from grocery shopping to motivation and behavior modification, and wt. loss surgery options.

NOT SO GOOD THINGS:  The book has not been updated since 2004.  The sections on wt. loss medications and Dietary Guidelines for Americans are a bit archaic.

On the whole, though, it is a simple, and easy to read book for someone wanting a general overviw of aspects of healthy eating and weight control.

 ♥ ♥

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Book Review: The Diet Dropout’s Guide to Natural Weight Loss

Posted by Jennifer (the RD) on December 14 ,2012

If you are looking for a very practical, user friendly, fact based guide to weight control, this is the book for you.  The reason I enjoyed this book was because it did not offer any quick fixes or give out any gimmicky recommendations for weight loss.  As a Registered Dietitian, I can tell you that the information presented in this book was very evidence based.  However, it was distilled down to very easily understood, simple language.     I am actually considering using it as an addendum to a weight control course I am teaching next year.

I can’t vouch for any of the recipes since I haven’t tried them, but it was nice that those were included also.

Overall, I highly recommend this book written by Stan Spencer, Ph.D.

♥ ♥

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Book Review – Vegan’s Daily Companion

Posted by Jennifer (the student) on November 10, 2012

The Vegan’s Daily Companion by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau is a book that offers 365 days of inspiration for the vegan, vegan curious or new vegan. This book is full of information about the vegan lifestyle with a focus on activism.

This book is divided by the days of the week and each day focuses on a topic. Mondays topic is For the Love of Food, it outlines healthy food options. Tuesdays are about Compassionate Communication, techniques for peace and nonviolence. Wednesdays are Optimum Health for Body, Mind, and Spirit, featuring health tips and lifestyle choices. Thursdays are Animals in the Arts, stories about animals in literature and film. Fridays are Stories of Hope, Rescue, and Transformation, stories and photos of animals that have been rescued. Saturdays and Sundays are Healthful Recipes, featuring simple vegan recipes.

This beautiful book would be a useful guide to someone who is thinking about adopting a plant-based diet. Some may be turned off by heavy activism tone.  I enjoyed many of the recipes and the layout of the book.

♥ ♥

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Recipe Swap Blog Party – Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Posted by Jennifer (the student) on October 20, 2012


My mom saved recipe from the Los Angeles Time in the 1970’s and I think this is another recipe that originally came from the Los Angeles School District in the 1950’s. No matter where it came from it has been a family staple ever since.

Ingredients for Cake:

  • 1 ½ cup cake flour
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream

Ingredients for Topping:

  • ¼ cup flour
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped
  • ¼ cup butter, cold


Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

All ingredients should be at room temperature. In bowl mix together flours, soda and baking powder.

In another bowl cream together butter with sugar until fluffy and light. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Add half of dry ingredients, mixing just until flour is blended. Blend in sour cream, then remaining dry ingredients.

Spread half of the batter lightly into a 10-inch tube pan. Sprinkle with half of Topping and spread with remaining batter. Sprinkle with remaining Topping. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes. Makes 8 servings.


 ♥ ♥

Make-Ahead Meals for Busy Moms Chef In Training Foodie Friends Friday What's cooking, love?

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Tommy Bahama’s “Life is One Long Weekend” (Book Review)

Posted by Jennifer (the RD) on October 5, 2012

After eating a wonderful salad at the Tommy Bahama restaurant, I had to buy this book.  The recipes are very good, solid recipes that are fairly easy to follow.  There are also lots of really nice, tropical pictures that make you want to travel to someplace tropical too!  🙂  For those of you that are fans of the  restaurant, the recipes are not exactly like the entrees from the restaurant although they are similar.  The best sections of the book, in my opinion, are the unique recipes for tropical drinks and the different sauces…they were really unique.  There are lots of  gems here in this cookbook!

Aside from some obvious typos, I really enjoyed this book.  It makes me want to go somewhere tropical!

 ♥ ♥

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Book Review – 8 Weeks to Optimum Health

Posted by Jennifer (the student) on September 15, 2012

8 weeks to Optimum Health by Dr Andrew Weil is a step-by-step plan for improving health in a natural way. The author is a Harvard trained medical doctor and a pioneer in the field of integrative medicine.

What I like most about this book is that it is a simple week-by-week plan. It is about changing behavior and making small consistent changes in the way you live.

For each week there is an outline of simple tasks to complete. These tasks are organized by projects, diet, supplements, exercise and mental/spiritual.

Here is a sample of the tasks for each week:

Week 1

  • Clear out unhealthy food from your pantry and fridge
  • Eat broccoli twice a week
  • Walk 10 minutes, 5 days
Week 2
  • Eat one soybean product
  • Drink green tea
  • Eat more whole grains
Week 3
  • Buy organic fruits and vegetables
  • Take vitamin E
  • Add stretching to your exercise routine
Week 4
  • Add garlic to your diet
  • Increase walking to 25 minutes, 5 days
  • Examine your sleep habits
Week 5
  • Add ginger to your diet
  • Try a one-day “fruit-fast”
  • Use a steam bath or sauna for 20 minutes
Week 6
  • Add leafy greens to your diet
  • Visit an art museum
  • Try a one-day juice fast
Week 7
  • Increase walk to 40 minutes, 5 days
  • Volunteer
  • Reconnect with an old friend
Week 8
  • Increase walk to 45 minutes, 5 days
  • Continue with dietary changes

I think most changes would be easy to incorporate and be beneficial for most everyone. If you were looking to make healthy changes in your diet and lifestyle, I would recommend reading this book.

 ♥ ♥

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Featured Restaurant – Green2Go

Posted by Jennifer (the student) on August 31, 2012


2435-A E. Imperial Highway

Brea, CA 92821

Phone # (714) 482-2130


Hours: 11am to 9pm Everyday

Green2Go is a new farm to table café in Brea featuring local and organic ingredients. This café offers comfort food made healthy in a fresh and clean atmosphere. I like restaurants that are individual owned and that are trying to offer something different and this restaurant does just that.

Linda, Anita, and Jouila 


The very friendly and helpful staff at the counter take the orders. Green2Go offers indoor seating and outdoor seating in a courtyard with a fountain.

The menu is well-rounded, featuring salads, sandwiches, panini, burgers, rice bowls, tacos and desserts.

 Roasted Jidori Chicken Salad

My favorite dish is the Roasted Jidori Chicken Salad because it tastes fresh and homemade. This salad has organic granny smith apples, roasted sesame seeds, slaw, radish, lemon juice, Dijon, mayo and avocado. I love that all the salads are available in two sizes: healthy and full size.

 Seared Ahi Salad

Another favorite is the Seared Ahi Salad that features rare ahi, Asian slaw, greens, and organic granny smith apples with vinaigrette.

Ahi Poke Salad 

Angus Beef Burger with Lettuce Wrap 

In addition, I have enjoyed the Angus beef and turkey burgers both were juicy and flavorful. I like that they offer the choice of a whole-wheat bun or a lettuce wrap.


I can’t leave Green2Go without some dessert. I like their old-fashioned banana bread that is available by the slice or loaf. Also, I have sampled several different cookies and they have all been good.

If you are looking for a wholesome, quality meal, give Green2Go a try. I think you will be glad you did. Thank you to Anita and Joulia and their friendly staff.

♥ ♥

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Book Review – “Please Feed Me”

Posted by Jennifer (the RD) on August 12, 2012

This very unique vegan cookbook was written by a vegan punk rocker who spent years “…surviving on potato chips….”   The author not only includes recipes in his book, but also chronicles his punk lifestyle…gigs, influences, touring, etc…pretty interesting stuff!  I bought this book at Hot Topic more than 5 years ago.  It must be out of print now, because I saw that it is selling for over $70 on and it’s not even a hard cover book!  The used version is also available for MUCH LESS!

My thoughts on the book…?  Some of the recipes are a little too simple and might be a little boring for some.  However, some of the recipes are actually very good and tasty, and really speak to the home cook.  There’s a recipe I like entitled Mixed Veg noodles that lists one of the ingredients as 2 handfuls of mushrooms (shiitakes, or whatever you can afford).  This is a good cookbook for “everyday” food and also for starving students or those watching their budgets.  Overall, I think it’s a great book to have on your cookbook shelf.

 ♥ ♥

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Featured Restaurant – Paninoteca Maggio

Posted by Jennifer (the student) on August 11, 2012 

Paninoteca Maggio

195 E City Place Dr

Santa Ana, CA 92705

Phone # (714) 426-8095


Hours: 10am- 4pm Tuesday – Saturday

Paninoteca Maggio, an Italian sandwich shop, in Santa Ana that has quickly become one of my favorite lunch spots. This small café is located in the City Place Shopping Center and is close to Mother’s Market. Inside this café it is rustic and modern and I am instantly transported back to Italy.

Orders are taken at the counter by the extremely friendly staff. When your order is ready it is delivered to your table. There are a couple tables inside and several tables outside, most with umbrellas.

The menu features sandwiches, a few salads and coffee. I cannot come here without ordering a café latte. They use Italian Segafredo Expresso with whole milk. It is a treat that I love.

 Cafe Latte

The sandwiches are really the stars here.  I think I have tried about half of them and they are all wonderful. My all time favorite sandwich is the Amalfi that has prosciutto, mozzarella, tomatoes, arugula, basil pesto and balsamic glaze. It is pure perfection. And my next favorite is the Lucca, which is a vegetarian sandwich. The Lucca has roasted eggplant, zucchini, red bell peppers, provolone, arugula, artichoke pesto and lemon aioli.



I have also enjoyed the Milano, a roasted chicken breast sandwich with asiago cheese, arugula, sundried tomato pesto and lemon aioli. In addition, the Roma is another sandwich worth trying. The Roma has pork and veal meatballs with parmesan cheese, fresh basil and marinara sauce.  I think the most popular sandwich is the Toscana that features porchetta, arugula and lemon aioli and I understand its popularity.



The salads change weekly and they are always good. If you are looking for something sweet try the Dolce. It is a nutella and peanut butter panini that is creamy and gooey in the best way.


If you find yourself on the I-5 freeway in Santa Ana, close to Main Street, around lunchtime take a detour to Paninoteca Maggio. You will be in for a treat.

Thank you to Chef Sharron and his friendly staff.

♥ ♥

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