Did You Know?

Compared to cooked buffalo (a.k.a. bison), cooked beef chuck has almost twice the calories, 7 times the fat, 6 times the saturated fat, 33% more cholesterol, and slightly less protein.

- Fact #14
Hawaii’s Gold Macadamia Nut Oil

Deborah says: "Macadamia nut oil has an ultra-mild flavor and a high smoke point which makes it ideal for stir-frying and high-temperature roasting. It’s my go-to oil in ethnic cuisines whose flavors are not compatible with olive oil. Because it’s healthier than any of them, I substitute it for canola, peanut, vegetable, grapeseed, sunflower, and safflower in any recipe calling for a neutral oil. Oils of Aloha, a small family-owned Hawaiian producer, makes the finest macadamia oil on the market."

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Personal Background

Photo Ben Gebo Photography

Ben Gebo Photography

I was born into a family of cooks. My grandmother was a professional chef and caterer who opened a restaurant on Miami Beach in the late 1930s and ended up catering Jewish weddings and bar mitzvahs for decades. Although she had only an eighth grade education, she was using wine in her sauces more than 20 years before Julia Child appeared on PBS. My father (her son) was a gifted amateur. In his 60s, he apprenticed himself to a retired Italian chef and became a master of Italian cooking in his own right. His signature dishes (seafood salad, shrimp marinara, linguine with white clam sauce, osso bucco, and lobster oreganata) were superior to anything available in an Italian restaurant in Miami at that time- and probably to this day. His cuisine was bold and balanced, rustic and sophisticated; and no one who had the pleasure to eat his food has ever forgotten it.

So, I inherited a passion for food, and I cooked as far back as I can remember. In fact, my first food memory is of playing with dough on the floor of my grandmother’s catering business. As a medical student in my twenties, I developed a serious interest in nutrition. Then, about 15 years ago, personal medical problems caused me to turn to the Zone diet (see www.DrSears.com ). My cookbook, The Gourmet Prescription (Bay Books 1999), was oriented toward the Zone, although its recipes fit any regimen that moderated fat, protein, and carbohydrate. While I’m no longer so doctrinaire—certain basic Zone principles still inform my cooking and eating.  I continue to rely on the “healthy trinity” (see Building Blocks) of lean proteins, good carbohydrates, and friendly fats, but my goal is always flavor. How I get there is the unfolding narrative of this website.