All Posts By Julie Hines

How to Staycation Like You Mean It

by in Recipes, View All Posts, August 15th, 2017

DIY Spa TreatmentsSo, you’re taking some time off but have nothing planned? Don’t spend the whole vacation in front of the TV — no one’s judging you for binging a few series here or there, but think about how good you’ll feel if you actually do something with your days off. This is the perfect opportunity to do things that you normally don’t have time for. Whether that’s getting outside and exploring your neighborhood or trying out a new restaurant, you’ll be glad to have some real stories to tell when you’re back at the office. You don’t have to travel somewhere exotic to enjoy your time off. Try out some of these tips for making the most of your staycation.

Spa Day. Turn on some peaceful spa music and apply DIY spa treatments like face masks and hand scrubs to get your zen on. Cucumber water is a must for the full effect.
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Take 5: Summer Slow Cooker Dinners

by in Recipes, View All Posts, July 30th, 2017

Turkey Mole TacosA workhorse during winter months for stews, chili and hot cider, slow cookers are often forgotten during the warmer months in favor of outdoor meals cooked on the grill. But then reality kicks and you realize that grilling on a Tuesday night is not as much fun as you planned because you’ve got a packed evening and an even busier rest of the week that you need to prepare for. Enter your slow cooker, back in action and ready to save the day. The best part? No stovetops or ovens involved, so your kitchen will stay cool even though the meal is hot.

Take back your weeknights and with some classic slow cooker meals that are perfect for summer nights. All of these recipes can be prepped in less than 40 minutes and practically cook themselves in the slow cooker. Stay one step ahead and prep the ingredients in the bowl of the slow cooker the night before, then store in the fridge and place into the slow cooker housing in the morning before you leave.

Turkey Mole Tacos (pictured above)
Moles are traditional Mexican sauces made with chiles and chocolate, and about 20 other ingredients and a fair amount of patience to make. Achieve the authentic flavor with just 15 minutes of prep work and let the slow cooker do the heavy lifting in this shortcut meal. Read more

Punch is Making a Comeback and We Don’t Hate It

by in Drinks, Recipes, July 26th, 2017

Rum PunchPunch is back. And we’re not talking the ubiquitous red drink of unknown origins from classic 80’s movie high school prom scenes that someone inevitably gets pushed into. Totally customizable to your palate and party-type, punch is a crowd pleaser from summer cookouts to black-tie events.

The big-batch drink we know today is a descendant of a Hindi drink made of five ingredients – tea, liquor, water, sugar and lemon – which was popularized during the British empire’s rule in India. Mariners loved the stuff for all of the obvious reasons but also, thanks to a dose of citrus, punch’s ability to ward off scurvy during long trips at sea.

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7 Grilled Meals You Can Prep Ahead of Time

by in Recipes, July 21st, 2017

Slow-Grilled Chipotle ChickenThe best part about hosting a cookout is socializing with friends and family around the grill. You don’t want to be stuck inside cooking different parts of the meal when guests arrive, which is where prepping ahead comes into play. Choose meals that you can prepare in advance, so the only thing that needs to happen when you want to eat, is check on whatever is grilling. A little bit of prep work takes the stress out of summer dinner parties and makes these grilled meals a cinch to cook.

Slow-Grilled Chipotle Chicken Tacos (pictured above)
Make-your-own meals are the key to success for a stress-free party. This chicken gets a half-hour marinade and then cooks low and slow, so get started on the prep work about 2 hours before anyone is going to show up. When you’re ready to eat, heat up tortillas and scallions on the grill and carve the bird.
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Beyond the Cookout: 9 Ways to Grill Breakfast, Lunch and Dessert

by in Recipes, View All Posts, July 14th, 2017

Grilled French Toast Foil PacketsThroughout the summer the grill is the center of attention during dinnertime over the summer for cookouts and parties, but there’s no reason to shy away during the earlier parts of the day or a non-occasion. Whether you’re out by the pool, camping or just enjoying the warm weather, using the grill keeps you near the action and minimizes on clean up (see ya, pots and pans!). Spend the day outside and grill up some breakfast, lunch and dessert.

Breakfast:

Grilled French Toast Foil Packets (pictured above)
Who knew breakfast on the grill can be healthy, taste indulgent and no-fuss all at the same time? Individual foil packs (use the non-stick kind for this) are a fun way to serve and best of all, no plates to clean up. Read more

9 Make-and-Take Lunches to Get You Through Summer Weekdays

by in In Season, Recipes, View All Posts, July 11th, 2017

Peanut Soba Noodles with Vegetable SaladWe wish we could eat ice cream and lobster rolls on the boardwalk every day throughout the summer, but for the most part, we’re stuck behind a computer doing the same stuff we do for the rest of the year. And when we do go on vacation, we find ourselves over-indulging and over spending . Give your taste buds and your wallet a break from the overload with some weekday lunches you’ll actually be excited to dig into.

Peanut Soba Noodles with Vegetable Salad (pictured above)
No microwave necessary to dig into this cold noodle salad. Protein-packed peanut butter and soba noodles mean this vegetarian lunch will keep you full through the 3 p.m. slump. Read more

Take 5: Lighter Summer Dinner Recipes

by in Recipes, July 9th, 2017

Grilled Honey Glazed Chicken with Green Pea and Mint SauceSummertime means chowing down on hamburgers and pasta salad at cookouts and big bowls of ice cream to beat the heat. It’s all fantastic and delicious until you wake up Monday morning and realize you are actually craving lighter fare that won’t leave you feeling heavy and bloated. Enjoy these five easy-to-make weeknight dinners that won’t wreck your beach bod and, best of all, take less than an hour to get on the table.

P.S. If you’ve already got the grill going, you may as well make your sides on there as well — try grilled veggies, corn on the cob or sweet potato fries to round out your healthy meals.

Grilled Honey Glazed Chicken with Green Pea and Mint Sauce (pictured above)
No marinade necessary for this delicious chicken, just brush a balsamic-honey mixture over the chicken breasts as you grill. Make it look like you know what you’re doing with a frozen pea-based sauce for serving on the side. Read more

8 No-Churn Ice Creams That are Totally Doable

by in Recipes, June 30th, 2017

Strawberry Cheesecake Ice CreamHomemade ice cream is often thought of as a luxury dessert, something you make for a special occasion or right at the beginning of summer. The end product is amazing, but it’s such a process. If you own an ice cream maker (no judgement if you don’t – they’re only useful for making ice cream and the occasional frose, and who needs an extra piece of equipment lying around?), you have to start freezing the parts and prepping the ice cream base long before you can ever tuck into the end product. Enter no-churn ice cream. It’s totally doable as a weekend project or any time you have a few hours for ice cream to set up in the freezer.

The trick to smooth no-churn ice cream is folding whipped heavy cream into sweetened condensed milk (sorry friends, this is ice cream not salad). Then freeze the ice cream for a few hours and add any mix-ins when it’s at the consistency of soft serve, so they don’t all end up at the bottom of the ice cream. Freeze for another few hours until solid and scoopable and amazingly delicious.

Homemade is so much better than the store-bought stuff, and with recipes this easy, from-scratch ice cream will become part of your summer repertoire.

Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream (pictured above)
Fresh strawberry syrup and little bites of cheesecake are swirled into a cream cheese ice cream based, which makes for an indulgent summertime treat. Read more

Cook Hands-Free with Food Network’s In the Kitchen App

by in News, June 30th, 2017

Cook with Me ITK AppYou’ve just transferred some juicy tomatoes into the pot for a beautiful fresh pasta sauce and go to your phone to see the next step of the recipe, but your hands are covered in tomato juice. Time to stop and wipe off your hands to make sure you keep your phone clean.

Messy hands, meet Cook with Me, a collection of voice-activated recipes in Food Network’s In the Kitchen app where you can command Sage, the recipe assistant, to walk you through each step. There are also instructional videos along the way to make sure you’re on track to a delicious, fail-proof meal. Read more

American Flag Salad and 7 Other Incredibly Easy Patriotic Plates

by in Holidays, Recipes, June 24th, 2017

American Flag Caprese SaladBetween the backyard barbecues, beachy picnics and fireworks viewing parties, summer is packed with patriotic events. When planning your next party don’t limit the theme to the decor – food can be patriotic, too! And while a surprise-inside flag cake looks amazing, not everyone has the time to make one. We rounded up our favorite red, white and blue dishes that will look great, but won’t take all day to make.

American Flag Caprese Salad (pictured above)
The addition of purple potatoes to the classic mozzarella and tomato salad makes for a patriotic side dish, perfect for any summer party. It looks adorable in the flag design, but will look equally tasty mixed together in a bowl if you don’t have the patience to set it up. Read more