STAT keeps to kosher diet to stay healthy

While we're waiting for the labor talks to break, here's a must-read article from Bon Appetit Magazine about Amare Stoudemire's relationship with his private chef, Maxcel Hardy, and his weekly cuisine lifestyle and kosher diet.

Story highlights:

  • Stoudemire first met "Chef Max," as he calls him, three years ago in Miami. The Knicks superstar was there with some friends and was looking for a chef to cook for them. Hardy, who had been cooking up specialities for the stars since 2002, was a logical choice. Not long after, Hardy packed his bags for New York City to become STAT's full-time chef.

  • Stoudemire's trip to Israel during the summer of 2010 inspired him to maintain a kosher diet. So now Hardy buys kosher beef and chicken, and avoids pork. However, there are exceptions. "If Amare had a good game, he might want crab legs, or maybe lobster macaroni and cheese," Hardy says.

  • While Stoudemire stays healthy during the week, he cheats a bit on the weekends -- a tradition he's kept since growing up in Florida. "My aunt always cooked a huge meal on Sundays," Stoudemire says. "I want to keep that tradition alive here. So on Sundays, Chef Max lays it all out, and a bunch of friends come over. We call it Soul Food Sundays."

  • Stoudemire's dinner parties include a diverse mix, just like his off-the-court business portfolio. One evening included Marquis Jet co-founder Jesse Itzler, his wife, Sara Blakely, the inventor of Spanx, Wayne Pinkney, who works with Stoudemire at Nike, and the rapper Fabolous.

  • And what about Stoudemire's skills in the kitchen? Well, let's just say he's giving it a whirl. "It's fun to cook, man. And it's intriguing to the ladies," Stoudemire says, laughing. "You score a few more 'cool points' that way."

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