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.

What Happens When Princess Leia and Dr. Evil Join Forces — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, October 4th, 2015

If the over-the-top outdoorsy sabotages that Alton Brown recently unveiled at Camp Cutthroat are any indication, the host’s devotion to eviliciousness knows no bounds, and he’s not one to shy away from a theme. And it’s a good thing that’s the case, because on tonight’s special Halloween episode of Cutthroat Kitchen, he answered the call of fright-night duty by dressing up as none other than Dr. Evil, complete with a bald cap and a telling facial scar. Simon Majumdar, who — like Alton — will stop at nothing for the betterment of the show, donned a series of getups, including a pink-lipped Princess Leia costume, which he showed off on Alton’s After-Show. The duo looked back on the most-haunting Halloween-themed sabotages of the day, from chainsawed sandwich wraps to a time-sucking coffin.

“It was a coffin break, Simon,” Alton told the judge of the Round 2 midround challenge as the crew rolled out the coffin. “The Bobs are awakening,” Simon noted, looking into the coffin as a wigged Bob waved back at him. But not long after the Bob was revealed did Alton slam the top of the coffin upon him, and Simon learned that Chef Adia was forced to spend a spooky five minutes inside that coffin. No matter her lost time, though, Chef Adia ultimately proved her scary-good sabotage prowess by surviving the challenges and earning evilicious glory.

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Herbed Garlic Bread — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, October 4th, 2015

Herbed Garlic BreadNo matter what you have planned for your dinner menu, the meal will likely be made even more indulgent when you add a helping of this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week. Featuring plenty of rich garlic and fresh parsley, this buttery bread from Food Network Magazine is a cinch to put together. Perhaps best of all, it can be on the table in a hurry, which means that it’s a go-to when you need an impressive recipe to wow your guests.

For more party-ready recipes, check out Food Network’s Let’s Entertain board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Herbed Garlic Bread from Food Network Magazine

3 Ways to Do Up Dips for Your Tailgate

by in Recipes, Shows, October 3rd, 2015

Windy City Deli DipIt’s Sunday afternoon and the scene is set for a tailgate of touchdown proportions: The TV is turned to the game, your team of choice is (hopefully) racking up point after point, the refrigerator is stocked with plenty of beers, and a spread of what else but rich, saucy fixings lines your kitchen table. When it comes to those game-day eats, it’s likely the dips that take the cake, from creamy classics like French onion and hummus to tangy favorites like garlicky salsa. While those are indeed crowd-pleasing picks, this fall, dress up your usual football-watching menu with a new trio of dips. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts shared their takes on winning dip recipes, each a bold dish that’s a cinch to tackle.

Windy City Deli Dip
True to his Windy City roots, Chicago native Jeff Mauro brings the best flavors of a classic Italian hero to a meaty dip. He combines deli-counter staples like mortadella, pancetta and provolone cheese with fresh cherry tomatoes and cool iceberg lettuce to create the filling for his 10-minute dip. To continue with the sandwich theme, he hollows out an Italian loaf and fills it with the meat-and-cheese mixture. Hot giardiniera rounds out the flavors in this big-batch recipe, while a side of sliced bread makes for easy dipping.

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So, You Have a Lot of Apples? Make Applesauce

by in In Season, Recipes, October 2nd, 2015

Whether you’ve spent all weekend at the orchard or you simply picked up a few bags of the skinned beauties from the grocery store, your crisper drawer is likely chock-full of apples. Once you’ve had your fill of pies, tarts and breads — and worked apples into your favorite savory recipes — it’s time to look to applesauce.

If you’ve stayed away from the from-scratch stuff over worry of a tricky assembly, fear not. It’s as simple as piling the ingredients in a pot and letting the heat work its magic. In her fuss-free recipe for Homemade Applesauce, Ina Garten opts for a mix of tart and sweet apples, plus warm spices like cinnamon and allspice to add the comforting flavors of the season. She bakes the mixture at a moderate temperature — 350 degrees F — so the apples will slowly break down and turn soft. Once they’re ready, all you have to do to turn out a smooth finished product is toss the red peel and quickly whisk the applesauce before serving.

Click the play button on the video above to watch how Ina makes this easy, healthy fall staple.

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All-Star Chefs to Endure Alton’s Evilicious Antics in Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage Tournament

by in Shows, October 1st, 2015

All-Star Chefs to Endure Alton's Evilicious Antics in Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage TournamentThere are culinary competitions, sure. And then there’s Cutthroat Kitchen, full of high-price auctioneering, ruthless peer sabotage and just-when-you-least-expect-them challenges. Beginning Wednesday, Nov. 4 at 9|8c, 16 all-star chefs will take their places in host Alton Brown‘s evilicious arena for Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage Tournament, a five-week tournament that will make even these culinary mavens sweat when subjected to Alton’s diabolical antics.

On the line this season is up to a whopping $75,000 in prize money for the winning chef’s charity of choice — and bragging rights, of course. For this group of fierce competitors, many of them past contest rivals and friends on- and off-screen, nothing will be off-limits as they face off in five heats — four preliminary rounds and a no-holds-barred finale — for evilicious glory.

Read on below to find out which of your favorite chefs are competing each week, and be sure to mark your calendars for a fall full of sabotage of the most-sinister sort.

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Giada’s Farro and Kale Salad — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, September 28th, 2015

Farro and Kale SaladKale salads are on menus everywhere these everywhere these days — and for good reason. This hearty green is packed with good-for-you nutrients and plays well with other flavors and textures, making it a go-to salad base, since it will be complemented by the other ingredients you add.

While everyday salads of just kale and dressing are a good place to start, in her recipe for Farro and Kale Salad Giada De Laurentiis dresses up the greens — she opts for the Tuscan variety of kale — with Italian-inspired tastes to create an easy yet elegant salad that’s satisfying enough to enjoy for dinner. Chopped walnuts add a welcome crunchy texture, while farro, an Italian grain like wheat, and dried cherries add a chewy bite. Mix up a citrus-laced vinaigrette to round out the flavors, and just before serving add crumbled goat cheese; you won’t want to pass up that creamy tang.

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3 Different Pans, 3 Very Different Toad-in-the-Hole Dishes — Testing the Cutthroat Kitchen Sabotages

by in Shows, September 27th, 2015

While some judges demand inventive, next-level variations on a classic dish, Cutthroat Kitchen judges are indeed pleased to see chefs’ traditional takes, as one-third of the panel’s judging criteria is whether an offering is indicative of the original recipe. So then what’s so difficult about cooking in this evilicious arena? The sabotages, of course. On tonight’s brand-new episode, host Alton Brown auctioned off a trio of oddball pans that would make prepping a seemingly simple dish — a toad-in-the-hole — anything but straightforward. But before the contest, the Cutthroat culinary crew attempted to turn out this egg-in-bread breakfast treat using all three pans to make sure it was indeed doable within the allotted time.

As food stylist Jamie Peterson introduced the three pans up for testing today — the bumpy pan, the mushroom-shaped pan and the holey pan — he noted that they were collectively “horrendous pans.” And just after plopping an egg into the bread hole on the bumpy pan, he admitted, “Oh, that’s a problem.” The whites managed to ooze out from under the slice of bread and run along the valleys of the pan. The mushroom-shaped pan had no trouble heating up quickly, and once Jamie steadied the bread along its domed top, the egg was nearly fully contained to the hole. Given the multiple holes in the third pan, Jamie was sure to heat it, then turn off the flames before cooking the bread and egg to avoid torching them directly — and aside from some slippage, his technique was successful.

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Speedy Chicken-and-Cheese Enchiladas — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, September 27th, 2015

Chicken-and-Cheese EnchiladasYou know those recipes you reserve for weekend-only cooking because they require multiple steps and time to develop flavor? What if you could turn out those hearty, satisfying recipes on a regular weeknight — in just 30 quick minutes? This week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week promises just that. These meaty, comforting enchiladas from Food Network Magazine come together quickly thanks to a ready-to-go rotisserie chicken, but they boast all the taste of slow-cooked richness on account of the homemade tomatillo sauce. Just roll up the tortillas, blanket them with the chile-studded sauce and top them with cheese for impressive results in a hurry.

For more must-try recipes from Food Network Magazine, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook with Food Network Magazine board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Chicken-and-Cheese Enchiladas from Food Network Magazine

Caramel Is Good, but Salted Caramel Is Better: 10 Recipes You Have to Try

by in Recipes, September 27th, 2015

Caramel Is Good, but Salted Caramel Is Better: 10 Recipes You Have to TryPeanut butter and jelly, spaghetti and meatballs, chocolate and peanut butter. Some things are just better together, including caramel and salt. Just a pinch of the flaky stuff transforms the sweet sauce into a rich, complex treat that’s as satisfying as it is versatile. From moist brownies and a boozy milk shake to a bread pudding and even a grilled cheese, find out how we like to celebrate this fan-favorite flavor in comforting recipes.

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Apple Season Turns Boozy with This 5-Minute Cocktail

by in Drinks, Shows, September 26th, 2015

Apple Sorbet, Scotch and Soda Float‘Tis the season for all things apples, from sweet classics like pies, tarts and breads, to the savory side of the menu with hearty pork roasts and fresh salads. But what happens at cocktail hour? It turns out that you can enjoy the taste of autumn’s signature flavor in drink form, too. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts celebrated the best flavors of fall with go-to seasonal recipes, including Geoffrey Zakarian’s Apple Sorbet, Scotch and Soda Float.

It takes only those three key ingredients and a quick five minutes to make this adults-only cocktail, which doubles as a dessert, thanks to the scoops of refreshing apple sorbet in each class. The secret to serving GZ’s recipe? Freezing the glasses before filling them with the sorbet, which will help keep the drink chilled longer.

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