updated 4/13/2011 7:46:15 AM ET 2011-04-13T11:46:15

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., April 12, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Easy-to-prepare recipes from "Orange County Fare, A Culinary Journey Through the California Riviera," the first cookbook produced by the Junior League of Orange County, Calif., Inc., (JLOCC) in more than 20 years, make this both the perfect gift for your mom and the go-to source for entertaining on her special day. The book has received much acclaim: It was one of three finalists for a 2010 Benjamin Franklin Award from the Independent Book Publishers Assn., and it won a Silver Medal from the Mom's Choice Awards. It was also a Finalist in the Cookbook Category of the National Best Books 2009 Awards sponsored by USA Book News.  

The book focuses on fresh, California-style cuisine – colorful dishes easily mastered by the home cook – making it great for personal use or as a gift.  The book is priced at $29.95, plus tax. It can be purchased throughout Orange County at unique stores including A Store for Cooks, Laguna Niguel; Confetti and Ladera Flower Shoppe, Ladera Ranch; Dragonfly Shops and Gardens, Orange; Lamonts, Dana Point; Laguna Beach Books, Laguna Culinary Arts, Laguna Gourmet, Latitude 33 Bookshop, and Tuvalu, Laguna Beach; Accents on Newport Beach, Rogers Gardens, and Sherman Library and Gardens, Newport Beach; Borders Costa Mesa; Surf City Trading Company, Huntington Beach; and Willow Manor Gifts, Rancho Santa Margarita. Store location information is listed on the website www.OrangeCountyFare.com . The book can also be purchased online at www.Amazon.com  and www.jlocc.org, and at the JLOCC headquarters at 5140 Campus Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660.   Proceeds from sales support the JLOCC mission and community projects.

"Orange County Fare" features more than 175 recipes provided by JLOCC members, chefs, restaurants, and organizations that are unique to the area.  A tour of Orange County is woven through the book in photography by Marc Weisberg and additional insights in the accompanying text. 

"More than 400 excellent recipes provided by JLOCC members were evaluated for the project," says committee chair Lindsay Ayres Todd.  "The celebrity contributions add a little spice to the mix.  Orange County native and 'ER' television series star John Stamos shared his favorite marinated grilled seafood recipe.  The John Wayne family also supplied a recipe.  Richard Nixon's Snowball Salad was contributed by the Nixon Library Foundation.  Recipes from Disneyland 's Blue Bayou Restaurant are also included."  Laguna Beach-based author Lisi Harrison; registered dietitian Cheryl Forberg (a James Beard award-winning chef and nutritionist for NBC's "The Biggest Loser"); and Vanna White ("The Wheel of Fortune") are also contributors to the collection ranging from drinks and appetizers to desserts. 

Restaurants providing entries include A Restaurant, Amelia's Seafood & Italian Restaurant, Ambrosia Restaurant and Bar, Antonello Ristorante, Claes Restaurant, Five Crowns, The Golden Truffle, K'ya Restaurant, Opah Restaurant and Bar, The Palm Terrace at the Island Hotel, The Ramos House Café, Ruby's, and Zov's Bistro.  Recipes were also provided by culinary experts including The Orange County Register Food Editor Cathy Thomas, KFWB Radio personality Jamie Gwen, and "Chicken Soup for the Soul" author Diana Von Welanetz Wentworth.  Jeff Lavia of Dinner Mojo Personal Chef Services also participated.

While recipes from celebrities and experts are presented exactly as submitted, member recipes were tested by the committee.  The year-long project resulted in a cookbook that is considered "green," as 10 percent of the paper is made from recycled sources, and it is printed with agri-based inks. 

Sponsors for the project include Maralou Harrington, The Jacqueline M. Glass and Richard and Joanna James families, Jaynine and Dave Warner, and Earth Friendly Products, among others. 

In addition to the creation of the cookbook, which was designed as a project to give back to the community, the JLOCC's members actively support the community through collaboration with other Orange County nonprofit organizations.  This year the JLOCC's efforts are directed on behalf of the community in conjunction with groups including the Second Harvest Food Bank Backpack Program, Crittenton Services Connect Program, Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) Reading Program, Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Emancipated Youth Program, Kinship Support Services Program, and the League's Bear Hugs and Bear Necessities Program. The JLOCC members also conduct done-in-a-day volunteer projects through Impact Orange County.

About the Junior League of Orange County, California, Inc.

The Junior League of Orange County, California, Inc., is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving the community through the effective action and the leadership of trained volunteers.  JLOCC has contributed to Orange County by helping found organizations such as Orangewood Children's Home and the Volunteer Center of Orange County, now known as OneOC.  As a solely educational and charitable organization, the JLOCC's trained volunteers actively support the community through collaboration with organizations that promote and support the health, safety and education of women and children. A 501(c)(3) organization, the JLOCC reaches out to women of all races, religions, and national origins.  Originally founded in 1956 as the Newport Harbor Service League, the JLOCC is a member organization of the Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc.  To learn more about the JLOCC, call (949) 261-0823 or visit www.jlocc.org .

CONTACT: Susan Ballou
         (949) 477-3070
         susanballou@att.net

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