Marge Perry Newsday columnist Marge Perry

Marge Perry, Newsday's weekly 3 Simple columnist, also writes, broadcasts, teaches and speaks about cooking, food and nutrition. In her long-standing capacity as a Newsday columnist, Contributing Editor for Cooking Light, author of the blog A Sweet and Savory Life, restaurant critic, recent columnist for several leading magazines (Better Homes & Gardens, Prevention); regular contributor to many magazines, (including Self, More, Coastal Living, and Relish) and frequent guest on television and radio, Perry is an accessible and authoritative guide for anyone who cooks, eats and travels.

In addition to Dinner Tonight, the cookbook based on her daily Newsday column, Ms. Perry has contributed recipes and text to nearly 20 other food and nutrition books. Her articles have been syndicated internationally in magazines and books, and her recipes have appeared on the Television Food Network and numerous television news segments.

Perry teaches cooking and food writing at the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City, food writing at, and is a guest lecturer at the culinary management graduate school at New York University. Her extensive involvement with the food industry ranges from writing and reporting about cooking and nutrition, chefs, restaurants, growers, producers and manufacturers; restaurant reviewing; menu consulting; consumer trend analysis; and volunteering to bring food and cooking/nutrition know-how to those in need. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Libby Hillman Award for Culinary Excellence and the Food Writers’ Symposium scholarship and the Association of Food Journalists Award for Best Food Essay for an ode to her mother and strawberry-frosted cupcakes.

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3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 1⁄2 pounds chicken thighs, bone-in and skin removed

1 large green bell pepper, seeded and cut in thin strips

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1 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut in thin strips

1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 1 1⁄2 cups)

1⁄2 cup red wine

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons capers

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes


1. Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken and toss to thoroughly dredge.

2. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or deep skillet over medium high. Add the chicken, skinned side down, (reserving the excess flour in the bowl), and cook without moving until browned, about 6 minutes. Turn and brown on the undersides another 6 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

3. Add the bell peppers and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until somewhat softened, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with the reserved flour mixture. Add the wine and vinegar and cook, stirring to scrape up any bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring to a boil and cook 2 minutes to thicken slightly. Stir in the capers and tomatoes. Return the chicken to the pan, reduce the heat to medium low and gently simmer 30 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

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Nutritional analysis for each serving: 324 calories, 33 g protein, 15 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 13 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 550 mg sodium

TIP: Make a double batch of the cacciatore — it freezes well or can stay in the refrigerator for up to four days. 



1 cup rice

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1 tablespoon olive oil

1 1⁄2 pounds large shrimp, peeled

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons butter

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons parsley, chopped


1. Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Let stand, covered, until you are ready to use it.

2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Add the shrimp in a single layer, working in 2 batches if necessary. Cook for 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and season with the pepper.

3. Melt the butter in the skillet; add the garlic and cook, stirring often, until the garlic is golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice and toss in shrimp.

4. Stir parsley into rice. Top with shrimp and sauce. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 380 calories, 33 g protein, 38 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 10 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 225 mg sodium



3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried basil

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1⁄3 cup plain breadcrumbs

1⁄4 cup grated Parmesan

4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut pork chops, cut in half horizontally

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1⁄2 cup bottled marinara sauce

1⁄2 cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella


1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat a shallow baking sheet pan with cooking spray.

2. Combine the flour, oregano, basil, salt and pepper on a plate. Place the eggs in a shallow bowl. Combine the breadcrumbs and Parmesan on a second plate. Dredge each piece of pork first in the flour mixture, shaking off the excess; next in the eggs, again shaking off the excess; and finally in the breadcrumbs.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Add 4 pieces of pork and cook until golden on the undersides, about 3 minutes; turn and repeat. Transfer to the baking sheet pan and repeat with remaining oil and pork.

4. Spread the sauce on the top of each piece of pork and top with the mozzarella.

5. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 4 to 5 minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 379 calories, 33 g protein, 17 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 19 g fat, 6 g saturated fat, 771 mg sodium