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.

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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5 Ways to Get Your Frosty On with Frozen Margaritas

by in Drinks, Holidays, May 1st, 2015

Frozen MargaritasWe’re just days away from Cinco de Mayo. Have you bought your tortilla chips yet? If not, there’s still time to shop — and make salsa — but perhaps the more important question is whether you’ve dug out your blender from the back of the cupboard. You’ll be using that trusty appliance to whirl together the only cocktail you need on Cinco: a frozen margarita. While a margarita on the rocks will surely get the job done, frozen margaritas are a bit more indulgent and worthy of a celebration, if you ask us, and thanks to the blender, they’re a cinch to pull together in a hurry. Start with Food Network Magazine’s easy recipe for a lime-flavored classic, then dress up the tequila-spiked original with flavorful, fruity add-ins.

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Food Network’s In the Kitchen App Available on Apple Watch

by in News, April 30th, 2015

Food Network's In the Kitchen App Available on Apple WatchBy now you’ve heard the news that Apple launched the first-of-its-kind Apple Watch late last week, allowing users to message friends, track fitness goals, check news and scores, and more. But did you know that Food Network’s award-winning In the Kitchen app is now available on Apple Watch? For you Food Network fans, this means more ways to keep up with your must-watch shows and interact with your favorite chefs’ recipes.

If you’ve already opened up your Apple Watch, or you’re waiting for that coveted delivery to show up at your doorstep, here’s what you need to know about using In the Kitchen on the Watch:

  • No matter what day or time it is, you can check out what’s airing on Food Network at that very moment, and what will be on next.
  • For most shows, you can see which recipes your favorite Food Network star is making on that particular episode.
  • If you see a recipe you like, you can add it to your Recipe Box to make sure you don’t lose track of it.
  • Once you’re on your phone or tablet, open your Recipe Box to have the recipe at your fingertips in the kitchen.

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Restaurant Revisited: Going Down with the Ship at Gigi’s Music Cafe

by in Shows, April 29th, 2015

Robert Irvine on Restaurant: ImpossibleWhen Robert Irvine arrived at Gigi’s Music Cafe in Sunrise, Fla., he found a restaurant suffering from not just one culinary or staff issue, but a host of problems that had come to plague this three-year-old eatery. Owner Gigi Brown was struggling to recognize the dire situation her business was in, while her daughter Semone Brown-Mobley, who manages the restaurant, was forced to contend with the consequences of her mother’s decisions. They looked to Robert to streamline their financials and improve the scope of service, but perhaps most important was their need for an overhauled menu, as Gigi’s had relied heavily on the microwave. In true Irvine fashion, Robert and his Restaurant: Impossible team accepted this mission with gusto, working with Gigi and Semone both on land and at sea to give them the second chance they deserved. Read on below to hear from Semone to find out how Gigi’s is faring today.

“Sales have went up 40 percent in this last month,” Semone says, adding that in terms of her and her mother’s responsibilities at Gigi’s, “Me and my mother still have the same roles. She is helping more with the books and payroll. I still maintain the staff.”

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6 Recipes That Prove You Should Be Eating More French Toast

by in Recipes, April 28th, 2015

Challah French ToastForget about the soggy, egg-logged pieces of French toast you may be used to, because with the help of these best-ever breakfast recipes, you can turn out a hearty morning meal that’s crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. In terms of flavor in your French toast, that largely comes from the custard in which the bread soaks. While a sweetened vanilla mixture is perhaps the most classic, you can dress up the original to include fresh citrus, like Ina Garten does, or add melted chocolate for next-level richness, as is the case in Melissa d’Arabian’s recipe. Read on below for these how-tos, plus more creative French toast picks.

Challah French Toast — Consider this your ultimate French toast workhouse recipe. Ready to eat in a hurry, Ina’s big-batch breakfast (pictured above) is made with thick-cut challah bread and becomes rich and moist thanks to a soak in a citrus-laced vanilla custard. When it comes to toppings, stick with classic maple syrup, or opt for raspberry preserves and a dusting of sugar — or pile on all three fixings for a decadent finish.

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Scrambled Egg Subs — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, April 27th, 2015

Scrambled Egg SubsWhile breakfast for dinner may be part of the usual suppertime routine in many homes, you most likely look to a standard stack of pancakes or a platter of eggs and bacon to get the job done. But the options for morning meals at dinner indeed go beyond the traditional. Think Food Network Kitchen’s cinnamon-scented Coconut-Almond French Toast Casserole, Food Network Magazine’s Mushroom-Spinach Baked Eggs laced with nutty Gruyère cheese, or the Scrambled Egg Subs (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine.

Instead of featuring scrambled eggs alongside toast, this quick-fix recipe has them stuffed inside buttered hot dog buns for a heartier dish. The secret to turning out soft, fluffy scrambled eggs — and not tough, dry ones — is to not overcook the eggs. Here the eggs come together over medium heat, so they’re not scorched right away, and only when they’ve begun to set is it time to add the fresh herbs and melty cheese, like Havarti or Muenster, for over-the-top gooeyness. A handful of fresh scallions in the eggs promises a subtle, welcome bite, while a cool side salad of radishes and celery rounds out the fuss-free meal in a hurry.

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“That Is a Huge Tip” — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, April 26th, 2015

By now Cutthroat Kitchen superfans know that when it comes to evaluating the plates before them, judges assess just three elements of the offering: its taste, its presentation and whether or not it reminds them of the challenge dish at hand. While that indeed seems simple enough, Alton Brown and Jet Tila discussed a common mistake chefs make when facing off in battle: muddling their dishes with non-essential components.

During tonight’s installment of the After-Show, the two looked back on Heat 2 of the Cutthroat Kitchen: Evilicious tournament and a sabotage that introduced what Alton deemed to be “a distraction” to chefs’ dishes. The sabotage at hand afforded one chef sole control over the ingredients needed to make chicken-fried steak and another chef control over the required tools. It was up to them to share both sets of items, considering what they wanted to keep for themselves and what they’d be willing to part with. As for the cornmeal Jet found within the ingredient basket, Alton explained, “That’s a distraction, ’cause what it says is ‘Hey, make a side.'” Jet agreed, adding that the distinction between what’s required of the test at hand and what isn’t is a key to success in this contest. “That is a huge tip,” Jet noted. “Make the challenge and don’t go crazy.”

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Chicken Tostadas — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, April 26th, 2015

Chicken TostadasWhen it comes to Mexican night at home, tacos often steal the show, but with the help of this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, you can dig into your favorite flavors and ingredients in an all-new way. Just like a taco, the tostada features a corn tortilla base, but instead of being folded and filled, it’s kept flat and then fried so you can pile on the toppings. This recipe starts with a smear of refried beans, then layers lime-marinated chicken, cool lettuce and a mix of classic fixings, like creamy avocado and fresh-tomato salsa, for an over-the-top bite.

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

Get the Recipe: Chicken Tostadas (pictured above)