Tag Archives: joanna gagis

Eric Trump On a Mission to End Pediatric Cancer

Eric Trump, founder of the  The Eric Trump Foundation, sat down with Joanna Gagis on “Life & Living” to discuss his mission to help kids with cancer by supporting the St. Jude’s Research Hospital.

The Eric Trump Foundation is dedicated to raising money for children battling life-threatening diseases at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. “St. Jude’s is the best research hospital in the world for pediatric cancer,” Trump states.

Why pediatric cancer? “Kids are a universal. Everybody likes kids.” Trump describes how pediatric cancer puts young, innocent lives at risk, and that is not fair. “First and foremost, you have to help the kids.”

Click here to learn more about The Eric Trump Foundation.

Jeffrey Zurofsky On Entrepreneurship In The Culinary Arts

New Jersey native Jeffrey Zurofsky, Co-founder and Partner of ‘wichcraftand Co-host of Bravo TV’s “Best New Restaurant,” sat down with Joanna Gagis on “Life & Living” to discuss entrepreneurship in the culinary arts.

The Fort Lee native says that it is important to teach young entrepreneurs to grow. “If you do not repeat the mistakes you make, and learn from them and move forward, you will grow.” He cites the phrase, “only make new mistakes.”

“Best New Restaurant” acts as a way for restaurants to compete in the hopes of being known as the best new restaurant. This show is different than others of the same genre because it shows the restaurant staff in their own environment, chronicling the everyday challenges of running a business.

“You see them in their own environment, working in their own conditions,” Zurofsky states. “Every contestant on the show said that the competitions that we had given them were some of the toughest challenges they had.”

Zurofsky says that growing up, he learned how to cook from the television programs he would watch in his New Jersey home. “I learned how to cook from PBS.”

Believing that good food should be more accessible than just at fine dining restaurants, Zurofsky opened ‘wichcraft, a sandwich shop based on ingredients from the farmer’s market.

To learn more about Jeffrey Zurofsky, check out his profile on BravoTV.com. To learn more about ‘wichcract, head over to their website.


Celebrity Chef Amanda Freitag on “Chopped” and Her New Book

New Jersey-born celebrity chef Amanda Freitag sat down with Joanna Gagis on “Life & Living” to discuss her life-long passion for food, her role as a judge on The Food Network’s “Chopped,” and why she calls her new book, The Chef Next Door.

Freitag says that her love of cooking came from a love for eating, with food being “the answer to everything” growing up in Cedar Grove. “It was a typical suburban upbringing in New Jersey,” she explains. “My parents both worked, so they didn’t have time to cook a lot.” So, she set out to find good food. She started working in a restaurant when she was a teenager and fell in love with the energy, vibe, and adrenaline.

This Jersey girl has spent 20 years in food industry, and has written a new book for all different levels of cooks. She knows that many people are afraid of the kitchen when they first start cooking, and even has a chapter in her book titled, “The Scary Stuff.” Her advice? “Just do it.” Her book is an instructional tool, a home chef’s own personal cheerleader.

Freitag says that her experience as a judge on “Chopped” has taught and inspired her. After 396 episodes, she says “it has been fantastic.” Some of the ingredients used in the chef’s baskets are new to her, prompting her to try to cook with them herself.

Freitag is a big part of the Montclair Food & Wine Festival, calling Montclair her “backyard growing up.” She cites some wonderful restaurants in Montclair, and states that she loves “the chefs and the community.”

“This book was a long time coming,” she states, calling it  “a love letter to the home cook.” To order the book, head over to Freitag’s website. To learn more about “ Life & Living,” head over to their official Facebook page.