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 mediabistro.com, 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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Tip A "medium" zucchini is about 8 inches long and weighs about 8 ounces.

ZUCCHINI FRIES

1 large egg

1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

1/2 cup grated Parmesan (about 11/2 ounces)

1/4 teaspoon oregano

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1/4 teaspoon basil

2 medium zucchinis, about 1 pound

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat a large baking sheet pan with cooking spray.

2. Place the egg in a medium bowl and beat with a fork.

3. Combine the panko, Parmesan, oregano and basil in a second, medium-sized bowl.

4. Cut the zucchini into finger-size "fries"; dip first in the egg and then in the panko mixture. Place in a single, uncrowded layer on the baking pan and roast in the oven until golden and tender, about 20 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutrition for each serving 102 calories, 8 g protein, 9 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 5 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 202 mg sodium

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MARINATED ZUCCHINI RIBBON SALAD

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1 (8-ounce) zucchini

1 (8-ounce) yellow squash

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

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3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

1 tablespoon chopped basil

1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Pull a vegetable peeler lengthwise along the zucchini and yellow squash to form very thin strips the width of the squash.

2. Whisk the lemon juice, lemon zest, mustard, olive oil, parsley, basil and salt together; toss with the squash strips. Refrigerate at least one hour or overnight before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutrition for each serving 115 calories, 1 g protein, 4 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 11 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 159 mg sodium

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CHILLED ZUCCHINI-AVOCADO SOUP

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped celery

1 pound (2 medium) zucchini, chopped

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1 cup low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

3/4 cup buttermilk

1 avocado, cut into chunks

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1. Heat oil in a soup pot over medium; add onion, celery, zucchini and cumin; cook 5 to 7 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Stir in broth, remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

2. Combine zucchini mixture with buttermilk, avocado, salt and pepper and puree in batches in blender or food processor. Chill at least two hours before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutrition for each serving 175 calories, 6 g protein, 14 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 12 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 423 mg sodium