From CookBook to Real Life! Eating at HEARTH in NYC

On our recent trip to NYC, we made a reservation to eat at Hearth, Marco Canora’s restaurant in Manhatten. Last year I read Marco’s cookbook A GOOD FOOD DAY and loved loved loved it!

See my post about it here!

Since the rugrats were at summer camp, we figured this was the best time to have a new dining experience.

Hearth is located off First Avenue on 12th Street in a cute little brick building. It felt very cozy and was lit by candles (thus the dim pictures — sorry).

My husband ordered the Restaurant Week menu, which was prix fixe (it was “restaurant week in NYC when we were there). It included really yummy meatballs and a cheese course for dessert.

I ordered the grilled pork chop with pork sausage, summer kale, and peach balsamic. Yum!!


My husband and I shared a side dish of mushroom trifolati. That was a new term for me, and I always have to ask a million questions when we dine because I am allergic to some things. It means they were fried with olive oil, garlic, and parsley, and let me tell you – I wanted to lick the bowl! (but I didn’t..after all, we were in a nice place!).


For dessert, we shared a yummy piece of tiramasu cake:


And then – to my excitement, they brought out a chocolate tray with chocolates from around the world!


You could sample as much as you wanted – they all had differing amounts of cocoa in them. Of course, we were behaving, so we each tried two different ones. Yummy!!

Our server was super nice and took good care of me and my allergies (shellfish and cilantro). They also had a nice wine selection (we chose a Cote de Rhone I believe).

All in all, visiting HEARTH was a bit of a dream come true since I’m such a fan of Marco’s cookbook!

Check out Hearth’s website at You can read about their mission and philosophy of food.

Or even better — check it out the next time you are in NYC!

Quick Cookbook Review: The Blender Girl Smoothies by Tess Masters


If you know me, you know I love my smoothies!
This little book is chock full of amazing and yummy recipes for unique smoothies: 100 gluten-free, vegan, and paleo-friendly recipes.
It is truly amazing!
Each one has a picture showing how good it looks and a visual guide to show what it supports (immunity, weight loss, etc.).
This gets two thumbs up from me — thank you to Blogging for Books for my review copy.

Cookbook Review: The Sprouted Kitchen: BOWL AND SPOON by Sara and Hugh Forte

Through Blogging for Books I received another great cookbook to review: BOWL AND SPOON by Sara Forte – pictures by Hugh Forte. This is part of the “Sprouted Kitchen” series and is subtitled “simple and inspired whole foods recipes to savor and share”.

I was drawn to this book as I like to be able to make fresh, healthy meals for my family, with a minimum of clean-up. I love the bowls of food in this book! They are straightforward and pretty easy. My favorites were the breakfast bowls and the “big bowls” (dinner). A few recipes include: pumpkin-pie steel cut oats (you had me at “pumpkin”),winter fruit salad with ginger lime syrup (because it’s often winter here in New England), mixed greens with beet and walnut puree (we are in love with beets around here), and creamy mushroom pasta with frizzled leeks (what can I say? the name says it all).

This was my first “Sprouted Kitchen” experience, but I know many people love the first book. Apparently Sara is a food blogger (sorry if I’m late to the party here – I follow mostly book bloggers).

Love the recipes and ideas in here — recommended!

Thank you for my review copy!

51F3EW14OkLbowl and spoon

image compliments of Amazon.

Review: THE ADRENAL RESET DIET by Alan Christianson, NMD


Received through Blogging for Books, I chose this book since it states it will show you how to “strategically cycle carbs and proteins to lose weight, balance hormones, and move from stressed to thriving”.

So – who’s not stressed? It’s pretty much a given that today’s lifestyle is a busy, harried, stressful one. The premise of this book is that stress causes your adrenal glands to produce cortisol and cortisol causes us to store fat. Its plan is to “reset” your cortisol levels by balancing and cycling your carbs and proteins so that you don’t have high levels all the time and weight loss can happen.

Several years ago I went through a horrendously stressful period of my life. When I went for my physical that year they said that all my bloodwork looked great but that my cortisol level was “out of range” and too high. This was chalked up to my stress at that time. I’m pretty familiar with cortisol and the theories surrounding it. This book intuitively made sense to me.

The BIG plus in this book for me is it is about cycling and planning your food — not eliminating it. No ones says you can’t have carbs or dairy or fats or anything. It’s about HOW you eat (and how much of course) and WHEN you eat so that your diet is balanced and optimum for balancing cortisol levels.

I liked this book. I’m giving it a try – along with the work I’m doing with my nutritionist which is now focused on looking at how many carbs I’m getting and from what sources – to see if it helps me to lose some of this extra weight! (I also liked that it is under 300 pages. And there are recipes!).

Plus – for those of you who have been following me and know that I had those less than optimum numbers in December at my physical – through concentrated healthy eating (and exercise – but I’ve always exercised) my numbers are back into normal range for everything but cholesterol, but even that has improved in terms of ratio. Go me! 🙂

Thank you to Blogging for Books and Harmony Books for my review copy!

Here’s a bit about the author via Amazon:

Alan Christianson, NMD, is a naturopathic medical doctor who specializes in natural endocrinology with a focus on thyroid disorders. He founded Integrative Health, a physician group dedicated to helping people with thyroid disease and weight loss resistance regain their health. He lives in Scottsdale with his wife and their two children. Visit him at
(book image courtesy of Amazon)

Cookbook Review: LIGHTEN UP Y’ALL by Virginia Willis

If you read me regularly, you’ll know I’ve been on a cookbook kick. I love to cook and we’ve been trying to eat healthy, tasty recipes this winter.

LIGHTEN UP, Y’ALL has classic Southern recipes which are reworked so they are healthier. Virginia Willis is a Southerner and writer for the Food Network.  She has several other cookbooks out. This was the first one of hers that I’ve gotten.

I’ll be the first to say that I am not a girl of the South. I was born in RI, grew up in CA, and now live in MA. I’m sort of a blend of Yankee pot roast and good wine (and I have a shellfish allergy). But I’ve always been fascinated by Southern food. What exactly is okra? And are grits tasty ?? because they sound horrible. Virginia makes the point that in the past, the South was mostly agricultural, and meals reflected that by having a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits.

First up for us to try will be Chunky Chicken Noodle Soup, Pulled Pork Tenderloin with Red Pepper Vinegar Sauce, and Buttermilk Biscuits with Turkey Sausage Gravy. Mmm-mmm! (Of course these won’t be all on the same night!). The recipes look easy to follow and the pictures are beautiful. But note — there is not one picture for every recipe included (I know that matters to some people. Me – not so much as I’m not very visual).

I look forward to having this book in my collection!

Thank you, Blogging for Books, for my copy!

Find it at an indie bookstore near you — I am an Indie Bound affiliate.

Find it at an Indie!

Cookbook Review: SUPERMARKET HEALTHY by Melissa D’Arabian

I recently received the new Melissa D’Arabian cookbook from Blogging for Books. The subtitle is “Recipes and Know-How for Eating Well without Spending a Lot”. I enjoy watching Melissa on the Food Network and I had heard good things about her first cookbook – $10 Dinners – though I don’t own it.

This book is chock full of healthy recipes, all made with affordable ingredients found at your typical grocery store. I have a pet peeve: cookbooks that have strange, hard to find ingredients in them that cost a lot and we don’t usually eat. None of these recipes were like that! Melissa does give some suggestions of how you can substitute various grains, etc. in some of the recipes, to modify them. Most of the recipes were geared to four servings, which is perfect for our family. Melissa also has some “blueprints” which gives you a visual of how to create a staple dish in various ways.

There are lots of good sounding recipes, but the first on my list is the potato-cauliflower soup. It substitutes cauliflower to make the soup less starchy. There are lots of healthy suggestions/recipes like that in this book! There are some delicious sounding breakfast smoothies that we will be trying soon, too.

Fresh, affordable, and healthy — this book of recipes will be sure to be a staple in your kitchen!

Thanks, Blogging for Books, for my copy —

Find it at an independent bookstore near you:  (I am an Indie Bound affiliate)

Find it at an Indie!

Cookbook Review: A Good Food Day by Marco Canora with Tammy Walker

I received this cookbook through Blogging for Books. I’m a bit of a cookbook junkie and I love checking out new recipes!

The premise of this book is that food that is good for you doesn’t need to be bland or unexciting — it can taste good. That way, you can make every day a “good food” day!

At the beginning of the book, author/chef/restaurateur Marco Canora goes into his back story for a bit, telling how he really didn’t eat well or take care of himself until suddenly, in his 40’s, all his numbers were off and he was overweight and on his way to Type II diabetes. He moved to eating clean, wholesome foods – with lots of fresh veggies – and this book is chock full of his yummy recipes! (For instance, tomorrow for dinner I am making his pork tenderloin medallions, cook with a pan gravy that includes fennel, garlic, and white wine, with roasted lemon asparagus with pesto). His recipes are easy to follow and include what I would consider basic kitchen ingredients, assuming you have a well-stocked pantry/fridge. I haven’t seen anything I couldn’t pick up at my local grocery store or any recipe that should take hours to prepare (yes — some soups simmer for a while, but I don’t need to stand over them).

I’m so glad I chose this selection as it will be a staple in our kitchen!

Thank you Blogging for Books for my copy!

Find it at an Indie near you — I am an indie-bound affiliate:

Find it at an Indie!