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.

Restaurant Revisited: The Ambush at Tornatore’s Pizzeria

by in Shows, May 6th, 2015

Robert Irvine on Restaurant: ImpossibleIt’s no secret that Robert Irvine does the impossible every weekend when he rescues another struggling eatery from the brink of failure. But on tonight’s brand-new episode, he also did the unprecedented: For the first time in 11 seasons, Robert and his Restaurant: Impossible team ambushed a business owner who wasn’t expecting or prepared for their arrival — or the mission.

Within moments of Robert running through the doors of Tornatore’s Pizzeria, owner Denny Tornatore struggled to hold back tears, and while he was indeed surprised to learn what was about to go down at his Orlando, Fla., eatery over the next several days, he welcomed Robert and team, optimistic about what they could do to help him and his wife, Gina. While the ambush indeed provided shock-and-awe value, it also forced the Restaurant: Impossible crew to work within all-new time constraints, as they didn’t have the luxury of a prep day before filming; every minute counted as they hauled in equipment and set up materials. No matter the hectic schedule, Robert, in true Irvine fashion, successfully completed his mission, and with wow-worthy results. Read on below to hear from Denny and find out how Tornatore’s is doing today.

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Chefs Reveal Their Most-Indulgent Guilty Pleasures on All-New Series

by in Shows, May 6th, 2015

Chefs Reveal Their Most-Indulgent Guilty Pleasures on All-New SeriesYou know those foods that are simply so sinful that it seems best to eat them in private, those near-taboo plates that are just so next-level decadent that you can hardly talk about them with your friends? Those deeply comforting dishes may be some of the best-kept secrets in the food world, but on the all-new upcoming series Guilty Pleasures, your favorite Food Network chefs will reveal where they go for over-the-top creations.

Beginning Monday, May 25 at 10|9c, Rachael Ray, Bobby Flay, Alex Guarnaschelli, Anne Burrell, Curtis Stone and others will come together week after week to take fans on a cross-country adventure, showing off their picks of all things especially meaty, cheesy, ooey-gooey and downright decadent. From a 24-layer chocolate cake to a bacon-spiked cheeseburger and a filet mignon with fried oysters, the stars will break down the ins and outs of each swoonworthy item and reveal where you can go to try them all. Plus, the chefs responsible for making these memorable indulgences will describe their now-infamous creations.

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How to Bring More Superfood Quinoa Into Your Kitchen

by in Recipes, May 5th, 2015

Quinoa TabboulehAlong with blueberries, broccoli and salmon, quinoa is a known superfood that’s chock-full of good-for-you protein and vitamins, and like kale, it’s having a bit of an “in” moment. From soups and salads to next-level side dishes, quinoa is showing up on restaurant menus everywhere, and you’ve surely seen it in go-to recipes from some of your favorite chefs. On its own, quinoa has a mild, nutty flavor, which makes it a natural pairing with many different flavors and ingredients. Spicy, sweet, crunchy and cheesy — they all complement classic quinoa dishes, most of which come together quickly and simply.

Quinoa Tabbouleh
Ina Garten takes a Mediterranean staple — the tabbouleh salad — with fresh mint and parsley, and bulks it up in the form of filling quinoa. Her big-batch recipe can be made days ahead, then mixed with tangy feta just before serving.

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Pasta Primavera with Beets, Radishes and Radicchio — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, May 4th, 2015

Pasta Primavera with Beets, Radishes and RadicchioThe bright colors and seasonal produce packed into this quick-fix dish are a sure sign that it’s practically singing with springtime flavor — and the fact that the word “spring” is baked into the recipe title doesn’t hurt either. Food Network Magazine’s Pasta Primavera with Beets, Radishes and Radicchio (primavera means “spring” in Italian) comes together simply and in a hurry thanks to one key timesaving shortcut: precooked beets. When you’re shopping the grocery store, look for vacuum-packed cooked beets; using these instead of buying raw beets (then roasting and peeling them at home), will shave at least an hour off of dinnertime prep.

When it comes to the sauce for this satisfying pasta, simple is best. Sweet red onions and garlic form the flavor base, while the vinegar-laced beets, peppery radishes and crunchy radicchio combine to create an over-the-top mash-up of tastes and textures. For a welcome pop of green as well as a fragrant finish, toss the pasta with chopped basil, plus ricotta salata for an indulgent bite.

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Bobbing for Doughnuts — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, May 3rd, 2015

From climbing atop an oversize highchair to donning the now-infamous blueberry suitJet Tila will stop at nothing to prove his Cutthroat Kitchen allegiance and attempt to understand what chefs had to endure in the throes of sabotage. On tonight’s all-new After-Show, Jet, alongside Alton Brown, took his devotion one step further by trying his hand at a particularly sweet sabotage as they reflected on the challenges to befall the Evilicious tournament chefs.

The name of the game was doughnuts in Round 3, and in true diabolical fashion, Alton auctioned off a timesuck that forced one competitor to use only his mouth to free a row of doughnuts suspended from strings. Upon learning of this sabotage and seeing it for himself, Jet could do little other than laugh in sheer disbelief, though Alton was quick to challenge him to an impromptu attempt. “I’ll meet you in the middle,” Alton told him. And Jet admitted, “This sucks,” after just a few seconds of grabbing at the first doughnut. “I can’t do this!” he joked, later taking a light-hearted approach to the game, while Alton used all of his determination to power through the task at hand.

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Almost-Famous Bloomin’ Onion — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, May 3rd, 2015

Almost-Famous Bloomin' OnionLeave it to the chefs in Food Network Kitchen to take a restaurant classic with a cult following and remake it for home cooks, stripping away the tricky chef techniques and leaving just the over-the-top flavor you crave. That’s the case with this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, a crispy onion-and-dip starter inspired by the appetizer served at a steakhouse chain. This next-level recipe, featured in Food Network Magazine, features a sweet onion sliced bloomin’ style, then dredged in a cayenne-spiked batter and fried until golden brown.

For more appetizer inspiration, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook: Appetizers board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Almost-Famous Bloomin’ Onion (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine

The Heat Is On with Sweet Desserts

by in Recipes, May 2nd, 2015

Sunny's Paprika GanacheWhile you may be familiar with adding a punch of heat to traditional savory favorites like tacos — both hard-shelled and soft-shelled — as well as chicken, on this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen the co-hosts shared three new ways to feel the sweet burn in sweet treats. To key to ensuring that spicy ingredients don’t overpower a dessert is to balance those flavors with naturally sweet ones, which Sunny Anderson, Geoffrey Zakarian and Katie Lee demonstrate in their must-try recipes. Read on below to see how they do it.

It takes only three ingredients to make Sunny’s Paprika Ganache, boasting the smoky heat of Hungarian paprika. After just a few minutes of resting together, the warm cream will melt the spice-spiked semisweet chocolate and the mixture will be ready to stir until smooth.

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