All Posts By Maria Russo

Maria Russo is an editor at Food Network, now living in New York City after being born and raised in the great state of Michigan. She likes her eggs runny, her pasta cheesy and has been known to throw back dozens of oysters at a time.

Hot Chocolate Pudding — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, December 25th, 2016

Hot Chocolate PuddingNo, this pudding isn’t served hot a la hot chocolate. Instead, this rich, creamy treat takes its flavor cues from the cozy drink you know and love with the help of hot chocolate mix. That’s right. This week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week is made with the same mix you’d use to make a cup of cocoa, plus a bit of cornstarch, which helps the mixture thicken and turn into a pudding. When it comes to serving the pudding, the chefs in Food Network Kitchen explain, “Our hot chocolate pudding is topped with whipped cream, but as on the real thing, mini marshmallows would be great too.”

For more season recipes, check out Food Network’s Let’s Celebrate the Holidays board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Hot Chocolate Pudding

Professional Bakers to Battle Fakers in Blind Cook-Offs on Brand-New Series

by in Shows, December 22nd, 2016

Bakers vs. FakersSo, your cupcakes are the talk of the neighborhood potluck, and your cheesecake has been described as “legendary.” Does that mean your amateur baking chops could carry you in a competition versus the pros? Perhaps. On the all-new upcoming series Bakers vs. Fakers, professional pastry chefs will be all but equalized as they face off against home bakers in a series of battles — blind battles, that is.

Premiering Wednesday, Jan. 25 at 10|9c, Bakers vs. Fakers will bring together pros and Joes, but since the identities of all competitors will be hidden, the judges will evaluate the competitors’ offerings with no knowledge of their experience — or lack thereof. It’s up to the contestants to keep up with host Buddy Valastro’s demands in back-to-back challenges and attempt to convince the panel of their professional techniques, even if they’re fibbing along the way.

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Eggnog Monte Cristos — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, December 18th, 2016

Eggnog Monte CristosWhere there’s a holiday party there’s almost certainly eggnog, and we can be sure that with just a week until Christmas, seasonal soirees are in full swing. This week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week puts that sweet, creamy drink to good use — beyond sipping, of course. Since eggnog has a custardlike texture, it’s used as the dipping liquid to gently moisten the turkey-ham-cheese sandwiches before they’re cooked. The indulgent flavor of the eggnog delivers a savory-sweet richness, which pairs well with tart cranberry sauce on the side.

For more hearty recipes, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook Comfort Food board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Eggnog Monte Cristos from Food Network Magazine

Calling All Chocolate Lovers: How Do You Like Your Brownies? Vote Now

by in Polls, Shows, December 15th, 2016

Classic BrowniesMuch like chocolate chip cookies and ice cream flavors, brownies are personal. Beyond the myriad mix-ins available (nuts versus no nuts — the debate rages on), the very consistency of a chocolate brownie can provoke strong opinions. Do you like when the crumbly center is similar to that of cake, or do you prefer a chewy interior? Maybe you like something richly fudgy and nearly wet? We want to know which you like best. Cast your vote in the poll below to share your preferences.

Craving brownies? Learn the secrets to making the best brownies ever, like these Classic Brownies (pictured above) from Food Network Kitchen.

6 Ways to Warm Up with Flavored Hot Chocolate

by in Drinks, Recipes, December 15th, 2016

Gingerbread Hot ChocolateThe official first day of winter may be not be until next week, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t already felt plenty frosty outside. If the season’s chill has you cozying up under a blanket (or two) already, it’s probably high time to brew your first batch of hot cocoa. As you’re snuggling on the couch, reach for one of these six flavorful renditions of comforting cocoa to warm up from the inside out.

Flavor: Gingerbread

Not just for too-cute cookies, the seasonal flavor of gingerbread, featuring plenty of fragrant ground ginger, ground cinnamon and grated nutmeg, shines when paired with chocolate. This Gingerbread Hot Chocolate recipe gets two boosts of chocolate: one from cocoa powder and another from chopped milk chocolate.

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Coming Soon: A Big Appetite for Ginormous Food

by in Shows, December 12th, 2016

Ginormous FoodFootlong hot dogs, double cheeseburgers, deluxe pizzas — these are all large-sized foods, to be sure. But on the upcoming series Ginormous Food, host Josh Denny is set to introduce you to next-level-massive dishes that make all others seem downright puny.

Premiering Friday, Jan. 6 at 8|7c, Ginormous Food will go inside restaurants across the country, from Philly to Richmond to Nashville, to showcase the little-known but big and big-flavored bites they’re serving up. On each episode, fans can look forward to learning the ins and outs of these oversize spectaculars — like a bagel that tips the scales at 14 pounds and a Philly cheesesteak that’s layered with no less than 6 pounds of steak — and chatting with the restaurateurs about their menu items. These wow-worthy eats aren’t just impressively sized; they’re also full of unexpectedly bold tastes and textures. Josh will be on hand to see what it takes to put them together and will taste these hearty eats, in all their over-the-top glory, for himself.

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The Pioneer Woman’s 15-Minute Eggs Benedict — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, December 11th, 2016

Eggs BenedictWe’re approaching mid-December, which means that you’re likely knee-deep in all things holiday treats. Whether you’re making fudge to give, truffles to pass or cookies to simply eat by yourself (no judgment whatsoever — we may or may not be doing the same thing), you may be reaching your limit of sweets. When that time comes, look to a satisfying breakfast to kick off the day on a hearty, decidedly savory note. In this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, The Pioneer Woman puts a quick-fix spin on a morning classic: eggs Benedict. Her secret for simplicity is a blender hollandaise sauce, which she brightens up with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

For more wake-up-worthy breakfast ideas, check out Food Network’s Let’s Rise & Shine board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Eggs Benedict

2 Creamy, Melty New Ways to Do Fondue

by in Recipes, Shows, December 10th, 2016

Poblano and Corn Queso FundidoNope, you didn’t just step into the 1970s. We’re still here in 2016. But that doesn’t mean you can’t break out your retro fondue pot, because this old-school food trend makes an ideal party-time spread, especially during the holiday season. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts introduced two fondue recipes — one savory, one sweet — sure to wow your crowd with their hands-on dipping and eating potential. Read on below for top ideas from Marcela Valladolid and Sunny Anderson, then check out more cozy, comforting recipes from today’s Winter Lodge episode.

For a new take on your appetizer buffet, try Marcela’s Poblano and Corn Queso Fundido, a richly decadent melted cheese mixture made smoky with the addition of charred poblano peppers. Sliced chorizo, bread cubes and chicken make ideal dippers, which you can wrap up in warm tortillas for a hearty start to your holiday meal.

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GAC and Dolly Parton Team Up to Host Smoky Mountains Rise Telethon in Support of the Tennessee Wildfire Relief Efforts

by in News, December 9th, 2016

GAC and Dolly Parton Team Up to Host Smoky Mountains Rise Telethon in Support of the Tennessee Wildfire Relief EffortsFollowing several weeks of raging wildfires that cost 14 lives and ravaged the area of Sevier County, Tennessee, and the surrounding Great Smoky Mountains, the town of Gatlinburg reopened its businesses this morning. But the devastating effects of the tragedy will be felt throughout the state for weeks and months to come.

Tennessee holds a special place in the hearts of us here at Food Network. Our parent company, Scripps Networks Interactive, calls Knoxville home, as does the team at Great American Country, which is also owned by Scripps Networks Interactive. Dolly Parton, too, is a Tennessee native with strong ties to the Great Smoky Mountains, and on Tuesday, Dec. 13, GAC will team up with her to host the Smoky Mountains Rise Telethon, which will air on GAC at 8 p.m. EST, to benefit the ongoing wildfire relief efforts.

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Watch Natalie and Dave Sideserf Make an Epic Santa Cake for Christmas

by in Holidays, Shows, December 9th, 2016

Christmastime is nearly here, and while Santa Claus is making his nice list, Natalie and Dave Sideserf, of Austin’s famed Sideserf Cake Studio, are decking the halls with an epic Santa Claus cake. You’ve seen holiday-themed cakes before, right? Well, this one isn’t like those. Natalie and Dave’s jolly creation brings Santa to life (in a snowy chimney, of course) with the utmost realism, and it’s all thanks to their unmatched creativity, attention to detail and steady hands. Click the play button on the video above to watch their process unfold.

On Texas Cake House, which will premiere back-to-back episodes starting at 9|8c on Monday, Jan. 9, this powerhouse couple will give fans an insider’s look at the world of extravagant-cake design. Not only will viewers see the ins and outs of Natalie’s creative process, from the drawing and design stages to the stacking, carving and decorating, but they can also expect all-access accounts of the real-life goings-on of the business, as this husband-wife duo run Sideserf Cakes.

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