This episode of Rachael Ray’s Kids Cook-Off was amazing. YouTube’s popular food critic Daym Drops (Daymon Patterson) was a guest mentor and judge, and we also saw some really innovative dishes from the kids. Our favorite moment was when Christopher kept his cool during the waffle disaster in the elimination challenge. He had started out making a waffle-and-fried-chicken sandwich, but his batter was too thin and leaked like crazy out of the waffle iron. So in a moment of genius, he dipped slices of bread into the waffle batter and made a French toast fried chicken sandwich instead! He even won the challenge and received the highest honor of a Daym Drops’ “5 All Day.”
We met our eight kid contestants from Rachael Ray’s Kids Cook-Off this week, and the competition is sure to be fun and fierce. Who else was blown away by the contestants’ cooking skills and understanding of flavor pairings? They cooked with ingredients we never expected, like scallops, mussels and smoked salmon.
We loved Olivia’s sweet heart-shaped one-bite creation, and we were super-impressed with her last-minute sweet-to-savory shift. It’s amazing how changing an ordinary food into a fun shape can totally inspire kids (and some adults) to retry a once-refused dish. Or it can just make an old favorite even more fun to eat!
You can also add some heart to a regular Egg-in-a-Hole:
Let kids use a large heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut out the middle of a slice of bread. Then let them crack a large egg into a small bowl. Melt 1/2 tablespoon of butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Swirl the butter around, add the slice of bread along with the cutout, then cook until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Turn the bread and cutout over with a metal spatula, and if kids are big enough, let them slide the egg into the heart-shaped hole. Continue to cook over medium heat until the egg whites are almost set, 4 to 5 minutes. Then cover and continue to cook until the whites are completely set and the yolk is still runny, 2 to 3 minutes more. (Cook the egg, covered, a little longer for kids and adults who like a firmer yolk.) Sprinkle with salt and pepper, dip the cutout in the yolk and enjoy!
Tune in Monday at 8|7c to see the remaining seven kid chefs cook up a storm.
Photo courtesy of Leah Brickley
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After clicking through our 12 Favorite Foods Totally Transformed with a Waffle Iron and Classic and Creative Waffle Recipes, you may find yourself in the market for a waffle maker. But before you run out and make your purchase, there are some important things to consider: Are you more of a classic waffler, or are you a bit more on the adventurous side? If classic is your go-to, then pick a waffle maker based on your favorite shape and thickness. If you’re looking to get creative, then consider a larger model, like a four-slice Belgian-style waffle maker — you’ll have more room to play!
Beer is a refreshing beverage during the warm summer months, and it’s also great to cook with and marinate meats in. The beer used in Food Network Magazine‘s Beer-Braised Ribs with Clams dinner (pictured above) is not only a great way to season ribs — it’s also perfect for a refreshing Lemon Shandy. It’s easy: Just mix equal parts beer and lemonade and serve over ice. Add a splash of ginger ale if you’d like. It’s the perfect drink to sip as you pile up all those bones and shells!
Make this easy menu for dinner tonight:
Some of us in the test kitchen think sardines get a bad rep: They’re so often overlooked and sometimes even unfairly vilified. So we decided to hide them in Food Network Magazine‘s Sardine Salad Sandwich (pictured above) on page 66 of the April issue, adding heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins D and B12, iron and potassium to a lunchtime staple. (Bonus: Sardines are also very low in mercury.) This sandwich is so quick and delicious — we even fooled our own tasters into thinking it was tuna.
We also love adding sardines to our delicious Classic Nicoise Salad on page 150, or throwing chopped sardines into tomato sauce while it simmers and serving it over pasta.
Tell us: What’s your favorite way to eat sardines?