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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1 cup farro, rinsed

2 tablespoons raspberry vinegar

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1⁄4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon honey

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2 cups diced watermelon

2 cups diced cooked chicken breast

2 cups arugula

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Shaved Parmesan (optional)


1. Combine the farro with 3 cups water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce to medium-low and simmer until grains are tender but still chewy, about 40 minutes. Drain any excess liquid.

2. Whisk the raspberry vinegar, olive oil, mustard, salt and honey in a large bowl; add the farro, watermelon, chicken, arugula and cherry tomatoes and toss gently until well combined. Top each serving with shaved Parmesan if desired. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 389 calories, 29 g protein, 40 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 13 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 258 mg sodium

TIP: Farro may be made several days ahead and kept refrigerated; bring to room temperature to use.

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1 red onion, cut in 1⁄2-inch thick slices

3 romaine hearts, halved lengthwise

2 ears corn, shucked

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1 pound salmon fillet

3⁄4 teaspoon salt, divided

1⁄4 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1⁄2 teaspoon lemon zest

1⁄4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced


1. Coat the grill with cooking spray or oil and heat to medium-high (about 350-450 degrees).

2. Place the onion, romaine (cut side down) and corn on the grill. Cook the romaine until very lightly marked, about 2 minutes on each side. Cook the corn until lightly marked, turning several times, for a total of about 6 minutes. Cook the onion until well-marked and somewhat tender, about 4 minutes on each side. Allow all to cool slightly.

3. Season the fish with 1⁄2 teaspoon of the salt and the pepper and place on the grill with the flesh side facing down and cook 5 to 6 minutes on each side, or to desired degree of doneness. Transfer to a platter and let cool slightly.

4. Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, remaining 1⁄4 teaspoon of salt and lemon zest in a large bowl. Cut the romaine across into thin shreds, chop the onion, and cut the kernels from the corn cobs. Flake the salmon with a fork or your fingertips; add to the bowl with the romaine, onion, corn kernels and basil. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 320 calories, 29 g protein, 17 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 16 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 504 mg sodium



8 ounces baguette, cut in 1-inch cubes

4 slices center-cut bacon

1 pound peeled, deveined shrimp

2 beefsteak tomatoes, about 1 pound, diced in 1⁄2-inch pieces

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon drained capers

1⁄2 medium red onion, very thinly sliced

1 medium seedless cucumber, peeled, halved and sliced

1⁄3 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced

3⁄4 cup crumbled feta


1. Toast the bread lightly in a 425-degree oven until the edges crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Cool.

2. Cook the bacon in a large nonstick skillet; transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain.

3. Place the shrimp in a single layer in the skillet and cook 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until just cooked through. Transfer to a large bowl.

4. Add half the tomato and the vinegar to the skillet; cook, stirring, 2 minutes and remove from the heat. Stir in the capers and red onion.

5. Crumble the bacon and combine with the shrimp, tomato-onion mixture (including any liquid in the pan), and bread. Stir in the remaining tomato, cucumber, basil and feta and serve at room temperature. Makes 4 servings

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 371 calories, 35 g protein, 37 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 12 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 711 mg sodium