Cooking and Katting with Chef Franco Lania


Chef Franco Lania Cooking and Katting #meerkat Since live streaming Apps Meerkat and Periscope (owned by Twitter) were launched last month they have been highly publicized in the news and online.  Both apps, currently available only on iOS, let you broadcast live video from your smartphone to the app’s other users or to a private group of friends and followers.

***Update** Meerkat App now Available also for Android Smartphone Users!! Meerkat On Android for Everyone May 1st 2015 We introduced Chef Franco Lania to the Meerkat App as the perfect venue for his brand and personality.

“Ever since Meerkat captured the imagination of this year’s SXSW audience, it has become one of the most hotly-discussed new platforms in recent years among marketing industry experts.” “It’s been claimed by many that Meerkat is the biggest SXSW breakout product since Twitter in 2007” read more here

Chef Franco’s enthusiasm and passion for cooking is contagious and can be caught by watching him cook and engage with people. We chose to showcase Chef Franco’s magnanimous personality using the Meerkat App during a cooking session.

Most Meerkat users are aware that the app offers an option to save their video streams on their mobile devices but does not save to YouTube for you. We decided to use the Katch App.

Katch allows you to simplify the process of preserving your memories while passing off the storage and distribution concerns to YouTube’s servers. By adding “#Katch” to your Meerkat video stream description, you’ll immediately alert Katch, which will then save your video, upload it to YouTube and then send you the link via your Meerkat comments.  read more here We added  #Katch to our Meerkat Video Title to capture our video for posterity.

When we reviewed the “Katch Video” we discovered that the last 10 minutes of our saved video was out of sync.  We had lost video view for a few minutes during our meerkat broadcast and that must have disrupted the recording. Chef Franco was able to have the video put back into sync then placed up on YouTube. Chef Franco Lanio Meerkat Cooking YouTube Chef Franco’s Mission is to inspire people that have hit hardships and adversity in their lives using the invigorating energy of cooking. Meet Chef Franco Lania His passion for the kitchen and its potential to heal the soul have made him a grassroots sensation, inspiring culinary professionals and novice foodies alike. The Master Chef has appeared on HTTV and The Food Network, where he served up delicious recipes garnished with his famous joie de vivre.  Now Chef Franco shares his joy of cooking, his recipes, and the story of how he found happiness in the kitchen with people around the world….and how you can do the same.

The following is a three-minute clip from Katie Shea Design’s Meerkat Video summing up Chef Franco Lania’s Cooking Mission: Short clip from Katie Shea Design's Meerkat Video of Chef Franco Lania

Some Cooking Tips from Chef Franco Lania: 

Tip 1: Boil the pasta nice and easy to keep the integrity of the shapes.

Tip 2: Large sweet onions do not make you cry as much.

Tip 3: Remove the onion root before cutting to enable the onion to easily fall apart into half moon shapes. 

Tip 4:  Undercook your pasta by about 3 minutes.This allows the pasta to cook the rest of the way with the other hot ingredients.

You can find the Spring Pea and Pancetta Pasta Mista Here

Pasta Mista Image shot with an iPhone6 VZWBuzz by Katie Shea Design April 2015

While using the Meerkat App to video this cooking session; we used a Verizon WiFi Hotspot since “Live Streaming” devours Wireless Data.

What is a WiFi hotspot?

“Imagine a gadget that’s smaller than a deck of cards, as easy to use as a light switch and powerful enough to provide a super-fast Internet connection to numerous devices. That’s a mobile hotspot, which lets you take Wi-Fi with you. Wi-Fi hotspots—or Verizon Jetpack mobile hotspots—keep multiple Wi-Fi-enabled devices connected to the Verizon 4G LTE network. Unlike a USB modem or wireless modem, which can be used only with your laptop, a mobile hotspot can easily connect your laptop and other Wi-Fi-enabled devices simultaneously.” We keep a sharp eye on  Data usage since the business smartphone has a 2GB plan. By using the Verizon Hotspot we did not consume a chunk of the Data plan for one “Live Streaming” session.

The following image illustrates an example of a possible Verizon Wireless Customer’s Monthly Data Usage:

Katie Shea Design's Possible Data Usage

Please Click on the following image to calculate your Monthly Data Usage:

Verizon Data Usage Calculator

After calculating your estimated Monthly Data Usage stop by Verizon Wireless and check out all the latest Wireless Plans available for your wireless devices.

The scale is tipping in our personal and business lives to a more “Video Usage” world.  Ensuring we have a “Data Plan” that can accommodate our lifestyles and budgets is essential.

A Verizon iPhone6 128GB was used to shoot Katie Shea Design’s images and Meerkat Video in this post.

Disclosure **I am a member of  #VZWBuzz Lifestyle Blogger Team.  I am supplied with different devices to use and test.  All opinions are my own. **

Carmine’s: Talking 42 Ounce Porterhouse Steak, Ragu, Wings, NYC, Vegas with Executive Chef Glenn Rolnick

Carmine’s is a family style restaurant offering exceptional value to its guests through the many dishes of Southern Italian cuisine. Restaurateur Artie Cutler crafted the Carmine’s concept with a singular vision; bringing his guests “wow-factor” sized portions and making any meal feel like an Italian American wedding feast. Platters of homestyle antipasto, pasta, decadent seafood or meat entrees, and of course homemade desserts are all staples at Carmine’s, meant for sharing amongst friends and family. When great food and wine are supported by friendly and knowledgeable service, the results are magic – “we want every day to feel like a Sunday afternoon at Grandma’s!”

A Special Edition of The Food & Booze Show was broadcast live from Carmine’s NYC with special on site guests Kathleen DeCosmo and Susan Serra on the ground chatting with Executive Chef Glenn Rolnick.

Carmines Times Square NYC -Susan Serra Katheen DeCosmo Glenn Rolnick    Special Edition Food & Booze Show Hosts  Mia Voss and Chef Dennis Littley  Photo Credit Anthony DeCosmo @adecosmo2 #52from52

GLENN ROLNICK is the Director of Culinary Operations of Alicart Restaurant Group, a position he’s held for ten years. He has appeared on Good Morning America and QVC and has written for Time, New York Times, Gourmet, The New Yorker and Food Arts.

While we were preparing our tastebuds for the onslaught of Carmine’s heaven, we were schooled in Carmine’s history by Executive Chef and Author Glenn Rolnick.

25 years open soon for NYC’s 91st location!
20 years at Carmine’s Times Square (1.24 million customers yearly).

Carmine’s locations are Tropicana Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, NJ, Times Square NYC, Upper West Side 91st NYC, Atlantis Resort, Bahamas, Washington DC and The Forum Shops at Caesars Las Vegas.

The Washington DC location has 25,000 sq feet, 9 private dining rooms, 700 seats, and a secret service entrance.

Las Vegas location has 28000 sq feet 750 seats, 6 private dining space including a private balcony over looking the strip.

1 year for Las Vegas and listed in Top Ten Restaurant Vegas- USA Today : 10 BEST HOMESTYLE IN LAS VEGAS, NV.

The 28,000-square-foot restaurant, designed by Bill Johnson of Johnson Studios, features the trademark touches that grace all Carmine’s locations – high ceilings, antique chandeliers and warm, homey colors. Walls are lined with black and white photographs depicting the Southern Italian families whose culinary traditions inspired the restaurant’s timeless menu. There are 75 Chandeliers, 6 portraits and 7500 pictures in Carmine’s Las Vegas.

Trivia for Carmine’s Las Vegas First Year:

2400 people ate gluten free pasta
69,994 actual meatballs 125,000 meats
1,200 titanics or 12,000 softball scoops ice cream
14,869 lbs garlic
9,915 chicken parm
121,099 little neck clams
22,654 lbs. romano cheese
25,362 gal of marinara sauce
80,000 whole lemons
28,000 chicken breast
4,200 fresh basil
7,400 fried calamari or 15,000 pounds

We were treated to several dishes on the menu that were familiar to me as a regular guest and a few that I have never tasted before.

Did you know these dishes are menu choices at Carmine’s?

Carmines Times Square NYC-Susan Serra Katheen DeCosmo Glenn Rolnick    Special Edition Food & Booze Show Hosts  Mia Voss and Chef Dennis Littley   Photo Credit Anthony DeCosmo @adecosmo2 #52from52

Caesar Salad

Romaine lettuce tossed with garlic and anchovy caesar dressing and toasted croutons. (gluten-free available.)

Chicken Scarpariello (Wings)

Cut chicken on the bone pan fried and tossed in buttery lemon rosemary sauce. (Gluten-free.)

Porterhouse Steak

Porterhouse Contadina A 42-ounce steak beautifully sliced off the bone, a pound of Italian sweet sausage and huge piles of roasted potatoes and sautéed red and green peppers.

Porterhouse Steak  Carmines Times Square NYC-Susan Serra  Katheen DeCosmo Glenn Rolnick Special Edition Food & Booze Show Hosts Mia Voss Chef Dennis Littley  Photo Credit @adecosmo #52from52

Ragu (Assorted Meats)

A mixture of shredded beef, meatballs, pork braciole, and Italian sausage slow-cooked in a rich tomato sauce.

Ragu  Carmines Times Square NYC-Susan Serra Katheen DeCosmo Glenn Rolnick Special Edition Food & Booze Show Hosts Mia Voss  Chef Dennis Littley Photo Credit Anthony DeCosmo @adecosmo2 #52from52

The Titanic 

●Flourless Chocolate Torte
●3 scoops of Vanilla Ice Cream
●2 Scoops of Chocolate Ice Cream
●Fresh Whipped Cream
●Sliced Strawberries and Bananas
●Pineapple Roasted with Cinnamon
●Chocolate Syrup
●Chopped Hazelnuts
●4 Ferraro Hazelnut Chocolate Swirls for the Smoke Stacks

We also learned from Glenn Rolnick that he has a cookbook being released this year:

Publication date: November 4, 2014
$29.99, hardcover
Carmine’s Celebrates
Classic Italian Recipes for Everyday Feasts

Following their successful Carmine’s Family-Style Cookbook, Carmine’s Celebrates is perfect for big, abundant family-and-friend gatherings: weekly feasts, Sunday dinners, and holiday celebrations

Carmine’s is founded on the twin concepts of deliciousness and abbondanza. In their wildly popular Times Square flagship location and their other restaurants in New York City, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, Washington, DC, and Paradise Island, Bahamas, the tables are filled with giant platters of pasta, steaks, chicken, vegetables and more. And every single diner has a smile on his face. Now that concept comes home from the masters. Italian food is the nation’s most popular food both in restaurants and in home kitchens. In Carmine’s Celebrates, home cooks will learn how to make more than one hundred dishes in happy-making quantities. Nothing is difficult to make, serve or store. Each dish uses grocery store ingredients and extracts the best flavor from them so anyone can be an amazing cook. There is a special emphasis on “everyday” holidays, such as weekend family dinners, and also on traditional holiday food for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Dishes include:
—Crostini with Cannellini Bean Dip
—Sea Scallops Wrapped in Pancetta
—Mussels Fra Diavolo
—Spaghetti Carbonara
—Beefsteak Fiorentina
—Chicken Cacciatore

Carmine’s Celebrates: Classic Italian Recipes for Everyday Feasts can be found here for pre-order.

You are Invited to view the Special Edition of The Food & Booze Show Here

Food and Booze Show Link for CarminesNYC
Mia Voss & Chef Dennis Littley introduce you to restaurants, bon mots and drinkies from around the globe! Join them!

#BatCrapCrazy #GetYourLearnOn #AskChefDennis

#CarminesNYC  #SMDay  #SmDayHOA

Photo Credit: Anthony DeCosmo #52from52 @adecosmo2

Chef Jennifer DePalma “Chef of Distinction”

Chef Jen DePalma "Chef of Distinction"

Cupcake Wrapper Designed by  © 2011 KatieSheaDesign

In July 2011,  Chef Jennifer DePalma competed on Bravo Tv’s  hit new series 

 Rocco’s Dinner Party  

 Chosen the Winner!

 She is the first woman to win this Distinctive Honor.  Along with bragging rights  she received the Grand Prize of $20,000.00!  

The goal  being to see who would throw the best dinner party for Celebrity Author and  Chef  Rocco DiSpirito and his celebrity guests. Now EatThis9/27/11

Three  Chefs compete for the honor to be 1 of 2  Chefs chosen to cook for Rocco’s Themed Dinner Party for that particular evening by preparing and presenting their signature dish for Rocco to taste.

Rocco DiSpirito loved Chef Jen’s Signature dish Chicken Amore  so much he chose it as the winner of the signature dish challenge. Since then fans around the world have been asking for her Chicken Amore recipe!

The winner of the signature dish challenge then has the opportunity to choose 1 of three of Rocco’s dining rooms to serve their dinner party as well.

The two Chefs then meet with Celebrity Event Producer Jes Gordon   and author of  “Party Like a Rock Star”     to discuss and plan the décor for their chosen dining room.  Jes Gordon then designs  the chosen dining room based on the input of the  chef.   Jes’s  Blog also gives further design details  of each dinner party.

Jen chose the Terrace Room for her dinner party and had it decorated in a South Beach theme with white sofas, a tented dining table, tiki torches – a real Miami vibe.   When everyone walked in Jen’s party, they fell so in love with the stylish Miami-South Beach décor.,4  

Jen started out with her Coco Loco Spritzer, made with vodka and coconut water.  Jen’s Pork Tenderloin was a good choice.   “But the best dish of the night was what she prepared to accommodate Jeff:  Matzoh Brei.  This traditional Passover dish is an omelet-like mixture of eggs and pieces of matzoh fried together. You can put other ingredients in it, like vegetables. It’s open to interpretation, and Jen’s was as Jeff put it: “Matzoh brei’s greatest moment!” It can be fattening too, but Jen brought hers in at 190 calories and 8 grams of fat.”,4


Chef Jennifer DePalma and Rocco DiSpirito

 Chef Jennifer DePalma has over a decade of professional fine dining experience, trained at the The French Culinary Institute (Class of 2000)  and is licensed in food handling and safety.     “I offer polished, professional gourmet service to your doorstep”.  Chef Jen’s  experience includes working for the magazine La Cucina ItalianaHotel Plaza Athenee, owner of gourmet health food restaurant The Power Grill and teaches for The City University of New York.

NYC Cooks owner Chef Jennifer DePalma

NYC Cooks Logo

Chef Jen is a NYC private chef and owner of Jen DePalma’s Catering – specializing in fine dining dinner parties.  Servicing the tri-state area.



Chef  Jen is also the editor/creator of   a food blog featuring her  latest recipes, cooking tips, restaurant reviews and product food reviews.

Chef Jen wants all of her fans to know that she is dropping a cookbook later this fall (the title is still in the works)


Dark Chocolate Souffle with Creme Chantilly and fresh berries


Chef Jen DePalma's Aprons

Chef Jen has custom chef aprons available for sale and  – the hottest selling item is  I’m a Chef Not a Magician”,  now  Chef Jen’s famous lines from Rocco’s Dinner Party

She  will also be featured at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Gardens  October 15th 2011, for Tuscan fall Harvest Festival Chef Jen will be doing a cooking demonstration on healthy Italian Cooking, samples will be provided!  


Chef Jennifer DePalma’s Personal Invite to all:

Come out and taste my food October 15th!

Chef Jen DePalma Chef of Distinction

More Chef Jennifer DePalma Links:

You can view Chef Jen DePalma’s  appearance on  Rocco’s Dinner Party  as well as  any and

All of the  1st Season  Episodes  —> –> <–!/ChefJenDePalma

Canadian Fans

Now Airing in In Canada

on the W Network

Rocco’s Dinner Party  Season 1

    Monday September 26th at 10PM E/P

 “SUMMER IN THE CITY”  featuring  Chef  Jen DePalma

“Chef of Distinction Robin White” and follow #ColdSoupWeek on Twitter

#ColdSoupWeek AUG 21 – AUG 27 2011 with CHEF ROBIN WHITE

Meet My friend Chef Robin White 



#ColdSoupWeek  on Twitter


 #ColdSoupWeek / Aug. 21st / Here’s what you need to know!

The Cold Soup Week Menu & Schedule – Here they are; 7 scrumptious, easy to make cold soups for summer and each one is pair with a varietal perfect for sipping on a hot summer night. This is our cold soup week menu  and the recipes will follow.

Pick a night.  Make a soup.  Invite some friends.

When does it begin? 

Sunday, August 21st @ 8:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.

 Need more details? Check here.

Passaggio Wines A Proud Sponsor of #ColdSoupWeek

To watch all the #coldsoupweek tweets go by, go to on the night of the tweet up.  Put the hashtag “#coldsoupweek” into the search box on the Twitterfall website, hit the search button and all the twitter stream relating to the tweetup will appear in real time. This is so much fun to do with a bunch of your friends, eating the soups, and tweeting with millions around the world! Make the soup(s) and buy the suggested wine pairings ahead of time and invite some friends to you house and have a house party (last event there were over 27 house parties in 13 different countries!)

Check out interview with

@canapes45  AKA Chef RobinWhite  #coldsoupweek

See you at 8PM EST

#coldsoupweek tweets go by, go to on the night of the tweet up.

Put the hashtag “#coldsoupweek” into the search box on the Twitterfall website, hit the search button and all the twitter stream relating to the tweetup will appear in real time.