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.

2 Ways to Put Those Cans of Tuna to Good Use

by in Recipes, Shows, September 24th, 2016

Spaghetti and Tuna MeatballsWe’ve all been there. You’re slowly perusing the aisles at the grocery store, picking up odds and ends here and there, with no real plan for them in mind, and before you know it, you have a pantry packed with cans of this and jars of that. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts introduced their favorite ways to showcase those items in recipes that aren’t just resourceful but satisfying, too. When it comes to those straggler cans of tuna, for example, think beyond the salad sandwiches and macaroni salads — we’ve all had those before, right? Instead, use them in easy recipes that breathe new life into them, as Katie Lee and Marcela Valladolid do in their must-try recipes below.

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“Crockett” and “Short Bob” Go to War — Alton’s Camp Cutthroat After-Show

by in Shows, September 21st, 2016

Though Alton Brown frequently makes the Bobs endure all manner of evilicious escapades in the name of sabotage on Cutthroat Kitchen, on tonight’s After-Show, two of his sidekicks suffered nothing short of an epic battle following the Camp Cutthroat 2 finale.

To celebrate the fifth and final heat of his wild camp tournament, Alton waged a down-and-dirty war on the top-two chefs in Round 3, complete with barbed wire, fox holes and “grenades” (aka water balloons). Just like chefs Daniel and Gabriel had to face off, so too did two Bobs on the After-Show, only the Bobs weren’t tasked with outcooking each other; they simply had to scurry their way through Alton’s makeshift “race course,” as the host called it. But just because Alton and judge Richard Blais weren’t about to race through the dirt doesn’t mean they didn’t enjoy a little competition of their own. “I’m putting all of [my money] on Crockett,” Richard proclaimed, betting on the Bob who donned a Davy Crockett-style faux-raccoon hat to win the race. Alton, however, showed his support for “short Bob,” he said, before moving to a rock perch to launch water-balloon grenades at the Bob with Richard.

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Giada’s Chicken Saltimbocca — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, September 18th, 2016

Chicken SaltimboccaThere’s no question that chicken is a go-to pick for weeknight dinners and dressed-up meals alike. But sometimes the beloved grilled chicken breast just doesn’t cut it, and when that happens, it’s time to inject bold flavors, as Giada De Laurentiis does in this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week. Quick to prepare and healthy to boot, these chicken roll-ups feature a savory filling of prosciutto and spinach, plus a sprinkle of nutty Parmesan cheese for a welcome bite. Round out the chicken with a lemony sauce for an impressive finish.

For more dinner ideas, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook: Main Dishes board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Chicken Saltimbocca

3 No-Recipe Salad Dressing Recipes to Keep in Your Arsenal

by in Recipes, Shows, September 17th, 2016

Sunny's Grilled Chicken and Kale Salad with Creamy The secret is out: To cook a successful dish at home, you need not have a long, intricate recipe on hand or even any recipe at all. Sometimes, a simple how-to for the process or a general method for creating it will suffice. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the cast hosted a Recipe-Free Show, complete with savory and sweet eats and drinks, from saucy meatballs to a buttery fruit crisp, that are easy enough to put together without a recipe. Check out the cast’s easy ideas for making a trio of go-to salad dressings, each quick to prepare and ideal for no-recipe cooking.

Sunny’s Grilled Chicken and Kale Salad with Creamy “Equal-Parts” Harissa Salad Dressing
The name of the game here is 1/4 cup — keep that measurement in your mind. Just as the title suggests, this rich dressing boasts equal parts (1/4 cup) of mayonnaise, tangy buttermilk, spicy harissa and two kinds of fresh greens: cilantro and scallions. Once that mixture is whisked, it’s ready to be tossed with Sunny’s kale salad, which is studded with juicy chicken and grapes.

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“You Are Certainly Rigged for Adventure” — Alton’s Camp Cutthroat After-Show

by in Shows, September 14th, 2016

If the first three weeks of Camp Cutthroat 2: Alton’s Revenge were any indication, anything can happen while chefs are tucked away in the deep woods. And on tonight’s new episode — the fourth heat and the last preliminary battle before next Wednesday’s finale face-off — it seems as if Richard Blais, the judge of the day, had prepared himself for the worst, as he showed up to camp outfitted with not only sunglasses and a hat, but a heavy-duty backpack and a fanny pack as well. “You are certainly rigged for adventure,” Alton Brown told the judge during the After-Show. It turns out it was a good thing that Richard came dressed for a number of occasions, because Alton was quick to test the judge’s outdoor survival skills.

“Think of it as a wax museum of horror,” Alton told Richard, introducing him to a few Heat 4 challenges. Sure, Richard saw the hanging tent, and indeed he came face to face with the snacks-turned-grill-coals. But the main event that awaited him wasn’t on land — it was in the water in the form of an ingredient hunt around the lake on a Jet-Ski-towed sled.

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Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, September 11th, 2016

Shrimp Fettuccine AlfredoThough summer may not officially end for a couple more weeks, we’re already starting to crave the richer flavors of fall now that the Labor Day weekend is behind us. To bridge the summer-fall gap this year, look no further than this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, a simple pasta dish that marries the light, fresh taste of seafood with a comforting cream sauce that’s warm and cheesy. This recipe can be on the table in just 25 minutes, which means it’s a go-to pick for those first hectic weeks of back-to-school season.

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

Get the Recipe: Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo

Prepping by Any Means Necessary — Alton’s Camp Cutthroat After-Show

by in Shows, September 7th, 2016

It’s not unusual for Cutthroat Kitchen challenges to demand that chefs think outside the culinary box when it comes to prepping and cooking their dishes while under the burden of sabotages. After all, success in these contests comes to those who are resourceful and willing to go to any lengths necessary to finish the battle — and host Alton Brown did just that tonight.

On the latest installment of the After-Show, following tonight’s Heat 3 of the Camp Cutthroat 2 tournament, he and judge Simon Majumdar found themselves with one hand apiece “locked” in a boulder, just like two chefs were in Round 1 of the episode. That meant that while Simon’s sole remaining hand was left to cook, Alton’s was on hand to prep the cheese, bread and produce he found in his basket, then ultimately turn the ingredients over to Simon. One loaf of bread, one knife and one hand — how to slice in those conditions? If you’re Alton, the answer is simple: Just sit on the bread to keep it still. He indeed perched himself atop the loaf on the prep table, leaving just enough of the bread exposed to make a few slices. And as for that tricky tomato? Gently suspend it between your legs, of course. “This is a very sensitive operation,” Alton joked, taking care to keep the knife away from his exposed knees.

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The Non-Basil Pesto Recipe You Need to Try

by in Recipes, Shows, September 3rd, 2016

Non-Basil PestoBright, light and full of bold flavor, traditional pesto is a hallmark of the summer season, mainly thanks to the vibrant fresh basil that gives the sauce its famed green hue. But believe it or not, pesto doesn’t have to be all about the basil. In fact, you can make this standard puree with nearly any greens you happen to have on hand.

On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts checked off items from their summer bucket list and introduced simple ways to savor the tastes of the season, including a five-minute Non-Basil Pesto recipe. It’s easily customizable to whatever greens are available, and it yields craveable results every time. Geoffrey Zakarian starts with a flavorful blend of bold garlic and walnuts for subtle crunch then looks to the greens. He chooses a mix of arugula, kale and mint, but he also suggests fresh herbs and spinach, among other picks. Whirl them in the food processor with the garlic and nuts, then boost the richness by adding Parmesan and a hefty glug of olive oil for smoothness. Perhaps best of all is that this mixture keeps well in the fridge or freezer, so you can hang onto it for later.

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“I Literally Chose Poorly” — Alton’s Camp Cutthroat After-Show

by in Shows, August 31st, 2016

On the set of Camp Cutthroat 2: Alton’s Revenge, the sabotage situation proved to be a mixed bag for judge Antonia Lofaso. While she did find herself stuck in Alton Brown‘s Big Foot, a boot that she shared with the host, she won the opportunity to better her challenge fate after she bested the host in an impromptu rock-paper-scissors face-off. It was up to her to decide which animal-inspired cutting tool he would work with to prep a chopped salad, and ultimately she gave him the cat-claw gloves; the host saddled her with the bird beak. And almost immediately she realized the severity of the eviliciousness before her.

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Cutthroat Kitchen Gets Downright Spooky This Fall with All-New Tournament of Terror

by in Shows, August 31st, 2016

Cutthroat Kitchen: Tournament of TerrorOn any given day, Cutthroat Kitchen is a scary place for chefs to be. It’s full of unforeseen pitfalls, like diabolical sabotages, not to mention an evilicious host who has no qualms about unleashing horror upon the competitors. But beginning next month, things will get a lot more frightening in the Cutthroat arena, as Alton Brown is set to kick off Cutthroat Kitchen: Tournament of Terror.

Beginning Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 10|9c, fearless chefs will come together for a five-part celebration of all things spooktacular. In true Cutthroat fashion, there will be no shortage of startling sabotages, but this time the focus will be on Halloween-themed cooking and challenges. Think witches, mummies and ghosts — and their usual tricks and treats, of course. A total of 16 chefs will face off over four preliminary heats, then it’s on to the grand finale, when the winners of those early rounds will return for an anything-can-happen final showdown.

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