Food and Drink

"How Magician Penn Jillette Lost 100 Pounds on the Potato Diet"

100 pounds in about four months. And five years later he apparently has kept virtually all of it off.

The first two weeks are nothing but potatoes. Boiled or baked but not fried. With nothing added: no salt, no butter, no anything. Mandatory to also eat the skin. 

Details are in Penn's recent book, Presto! How I Made Over 100 Pounds Magically Disappear and Other Magical Tales. I read it and I think it desperately needs a good editor. Interesting but it would have been better at half the length. 

His diet guru is Ray Cronise. One piece on his thinking is here: "Ray Cronise Wants To Fix Our Broken Plate".

"The Cradle of Global Bagel Baking? (It’s Not New York)"


A self-taught baker in New Jersey is helping entrepreneurs all over the world, many with not even a schmear of experience, to open bagel shops.

I would think that if there were any money in this consulting and training, one of the big US firms like Bruegger's or Einstein Brothers would offer it.

Googling for a bit about bagels turned up some other interesting information:

"The Best Bagel Shop in Every State".

"Not your Bubbe's bagels: Here are America's 40 favorite bagel shops".

"10 Best Bagel Shops in America".

"The Bagel Shop Everyone Is Talking About In Your State".

I note that if any of my readers are UVa students or alums, all four of these lists include Charlottesville's Bodo's Bagels. That's impressive. 

I also note that according to the second link of the four above, that the areas with the "strongest ratio of bagel outlets compared to all other categories" are New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Maine, and DC.

My recommendations are--I haven't tried nearly all of the places listed above--Bruegger's and Russ & Daughters. If they are not the best, they are probably close enough for me.