All Posts By Leah Brickley

Leah Brickley is a Recipe Developer and Nutritionist in Food Network Kitchen. “My day typically bookends with researching, cooking, tasting, enjoying, evaluating and talking about food.”

Behind the Booklet: 50 Muffins

by in Food Network Magazine, January 3rd, 2013

50 Muffins
The chefs in Food Network Kitchens had so many favorite muffins in Food Network Magazine’s 50 Muffins (page 100, December issue) that we couldn’t print them all. Pick up the issue to see the ones that made the cut — then try this extra Mini Rumball Muffin recipe for a new twist on an old cookie classic.

Mini Rumball Muffins
Combine 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup each finely ground vanilla wafer cookies and walnuts, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon, nutmeg and fine salt. In another bowl, whisk 3/4 cup each whole milk and vegetable oil, 2 large eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Fold the milk-egg mixture into the flour mixture. Divide among 36 to 48 mini muffin liners. Bake at 350 degrees F until a toothpick inserted comes out clean, 16 to 18 minutes. Heat 1/2 cup each rum and dark brown sugar and whisk until the sugar dissolves. Poke holes in the warm muffins and drizzle with the rum mixture. Dust with confectioners’ sugar.

A Cookie Classic Gets Thinner

by , November 29th, 2012

peanut butter thins

Who doesn’t love a peanut butter cookie? The next time you’re craving crunchy, sweet and salty, try indulging in our Crunchy Peanut Butter Thins. We’ve trimmed the classic cookie down, making it leaner and crunchier (by adding chia seeds) and ...

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The Ultimate Thanksgiving Cake

by in Food Network Magazine, Holidays, November 18th, 2012

Pumpkin Pie Pecan Cake
Having a hard time deciding what pie to make for Thanksgiving dessert? Take a departure from the traditional and try Food Network Magazine’s Pumpkin Spice Cake With Chocolate-Pecan Filling from page 112 of the November issue (pictured above). We took our favorite parts of pumpkin, pecan and chocolate pies and layered them together to make this centerpiece cake.

Not a chocoholic? Skip the chocolate glaze and opt for this easy pumpkin cream cheese frosting instead:

Beat together 1 pound room temperature cream cheese, 1 stick room temperature unsalted butter, 1/3 cup pumpkin purée, 1/4 cup carrot baby food, 1 teaspoon each vanilla extract and orange zest, and 1/4 teaspoon each ground cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg on medium-high in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer) until very smooth, about 2 minutes. Adjust the speed to low and add 4 cups of confectioners’ sugar, in batches, until the frosting is smooth. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before frosting your cake. (Cake can be frosted and refrigerated up to 2 hours before serving.) Enjoy!

What’s for Breakfast? English Beans and Toast

by , November 10th, 2012

eggs and beans on toast
Beans and toast is a breakfast tradition in the UK (it’s both adored and loathed) that has stood the test of time. The story goes that in 1927 an executive at Heinz decided to create a national dish in order to sell more canned beans and an ic...

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Learn to Love It: Cauliflower

by in Food Network Magazine, November 9th, 2012

Twice-Baked Potatoes with Cauliflower
We’re big cauliflower lovers in the Food Network test kitchen, but we understand not everyone shares our enthusiasm. To recruit more fans for our cruciferous friend, we steamed and pureed it for the Super-Stuffed Baked Potatoes on page 70 of Food Network Magazine’s October issue. We didn’t have to use sour cream because of the creaminess of the cauliflower. Plus, it added fiber, calcium and vitamin C. We also turned to cauliflower to replace the meat in the Spicy Vegetarian Chili from the magazine’s January/February 2012 issue, page 106: We coarsely grated it raw and stirred it in at the end. Use pureed cauliflower to thicken soups, or add it to a dip to replace some of the fat.

The Risotto Challenge: Traditional vs. Quick and Under Pressure

by in Food Network Magazine, November 1st, 2012

Mushroom and Squash RisottoRisotto is perfect for a special weekend dinner. Until I started working in the test kitchen here at Food Network, I would have never attempted it for a weeknight dinner. That was until Katherine Alford (Vice President Food Network Test Kitchens) introduced me to risotto made in a pressure cooker.

I was skeptical at first. Using a pressure cooker cuts out one of the most important steps: stirring and slowly adding hot stock, coaxing the starch out from rice to make a creamy, luscious risotto. But I gave the pressure cooker a try one Monday night and had risotto ready for dinner in 25 minutes. It wasn’t far off from its traditional counterpart: creamy, toothsome and took only a fraction of the time and effort. Here is how a pressure cooker works: The steam given off by liquids in a well-sealed pressure cooker is trapped, and as pressure builds the temperature rises significantly compared to normal stove-top cooking. These higher temperatures cook food evenly and quickly.

Tip: Be sure to read your manufacturer’s instructions before using your pressure cooker for the first time.

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Do You Have 5 Minutes? Make Garlic-Tomato Toast

by , October 18th, 2012

tomato toast
If you have 5 minutes, then you have time to make a healthy snack (one of my personal favorites). Toast 1 slice of whole grain bread, rub with the cut-side of a halved garlic clove  and then with a halved plum tomato. Drizzle with extra-virgin oliv...

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Food Network Kitchens’ Top 15 Ingredients for a Healthy Kitchen

by , October 17th, 2012

parmesan cheese
Planning ahead is key for healthy cooking. Keep your kitchen stocked with simple, inexpensive ingredients and weeknight cooking will be much easier (and more fun!). Here’s what the experts in Food Network Kitchens have in their kitchens:

1. Eggs: ...

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Eat Your Prunes!

by in Food Network Magazine, October 4th, 2012

Chocolate Cupcakes With Meringue Frosting
You’d never know it, but while testing recipes for Food Network Magazine’s September issue, we used prunes to make these Chocolate Cupcakes With Meringue Frosting from page 68 extra moist (pictured above).

Prunes have earned an unfair reputation, but this dried fruit amazed us: It allowed us to lower the sugar and fat in the recipe, and added tons of health benefits. (Plus, you could hardly taste them!) Prunes are a great source of potassium and magnesium and they’re an easy way to increase your daily fiber intake. One serving (about 5 prunes) has 3 grams of fiber, 293 mg of potassium and 16 mg of magnesium — all for less than 100 calories.

New Play on Cottage Cheese

by , October 3rd, 2012

white bean dip
Everyone’s familiar with the classic diner combo of cottage cheese and pineapple (or peaches).  Whether you’re a fan of cottage cheese on its own (or with fruit) or not, here’s a new way to use this   with this lighter creamy white dip r...

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