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 reduced-fat cream cheese

1 cup reduced-fat milk

1 (3.4-ounce) packet vanilla instant pudding and pie-filling mix

1 teaspoon orange zest

8 cups cubed angel food cake (1 loaf), divided

1 (6-ounce) container blackberries

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1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries

1. Beat the cream cheese with a mixer until fluffy. Add the milk and beat to combine. Add the packet of pudding mix and beat until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the orange zest and beat to combine.

2. Place a layer of half the cake cubes in the bottom of 4 trifle cups or large wine goblets. Top with a layer of 1/4 cup of the pudding mix in each cup, followed by a layer of the mixed berries. Repeat, using all the remaining ingredients. Chill at least 15 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 329 calories, 10 g protein, 41 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 15 g fat, 9 g saturated fat, 686 mg sodium

TIP: The trifle may also be made with pound or chocolate cake.



1 cup flour

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

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1/2 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

1 cup reduced fat milk

2 tablespoons canola oil (plus additional for pan)

1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

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2. Beat the egg lightly in a second bowl; add the milk and oil and stir until well combined. Pour into the flour mixture and stir until just combined. (It is OK if lumps remain.) Let the mixture rest 5 minutes.

3. Transfer some of the batter to a squeeze bottle.

4. Wipe a nonstick skillet lightly with oil and heat over medium. Gentle squeeze the bottle over the pan to form a heart; fill in the heart with additional batter. Repeat, forming several hearts; flip once bubbles form on the top of the pancakes and cook on the second side for another 2 to 4 minutes, until the undersides are browned. Repeat with remaining batter.

5. Pancakes may be kept warm by draping loosely or placing in a 200-degree oven. Serve with sliced bananas, berries and/or maple syrup. Makes 4 servings

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 238 calories, 7 g protein, 33 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 9 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 707 mg sodium



2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1/4 cup milk

2/3 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice plus 4 teaspoons, divided

1 teaspoon lemon zest plus more for garnish

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup powdered sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray.

2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in a bowl.

3. Lightly beat the eggs in a second bowl; stir in the milk, oil, 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla. Stir ino the dry ingredients until just combined.

4. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 14 to 16 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.

5. Stir the confectioners sugar and remaining 4 teaspoons lemon juice until smooth. Spoon over the cakes, allowing it to drip down the sides. Top with additional lemon zest as desired. Makes 12 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 277 calories, 3 g protein, 39 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 13 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 169 mg sodium