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.

Giada’s Creamy, Cheesy Baked Fettuccine — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, October 10th, 2016

Creamy Fettuccine with Asiago and ThymeMacaroni and cheese is great and all (actually, it’s really great — a timeless classic if ever there was one), but sometimes you want something a bit more unexpected, something that delivers the ooey-gooey comfort you know and love but is also refined. And for that there’s Giada De Laurentiis’ next-level take on a baked pasta, which she deems “a really sophisticated and elegant mac and cheese.”

Just as quick to make as a classic homemade mac and cheese, Giada’s Creamy Baked Fettuccine with Asiago and Thyme replaces the usual stovetop cheddar sauce with a mixture of two cheeses and cool creme fraiche that can simply be combined in a single bowl. Similar to sour cream, creme fraiche boasts a subtle tang, which, along with the fragrant fresh thyme, balances the richness of the Asiago and the nutty Parmesan. When the pasta is ready — Giada skips the old-school elbow noodles and opts for thick, hearty fettuccine — she tosses it with the cheese blend to create a decadent mixture that’s ready for baking. Just top it with a blanket of Asiago and let the casserole turn golden in the oven.

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Trisha’s Un-Fried Chicken — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, October 9th, 2016

Un-Fried ChickenTrisha Yearwood has done the seemingly impossible. In her easy recipe for baked-not-fried chicken, this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, she’s turned lean chicken breasts into the crispy, crunchy, golden chicken pieces you’d expect after giving them a dip in the deep fryer — but without that oil bath. She dredges the chicken in tangy buttermilk, then coats it in a blanket of cheesy breadcrumbs before baking, to deliver the texture and flavor you know and love, in a lighter way.

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

Get the Recipe: Un-Fried Chicken

Caption It: Big Points for Tailgate Food

by in Shows, October 8th, 2016

The KitchenEver the enthusiastic cook and co-host, Jeff Mauro isn’t shy about showing his excitement on The Kitchen, no matter if he’s prepping a recipe on set, learning the latest craft project or welcoming a new guest to the party. And when it comes to football season, he’s every bit as game for the occasion as he is any other, as he proved during today’s all-new Tailgating 2.0 episode.

Take a peek at the photo above. With his head thrown back and a fist raised in the air, Jeff exuded football fervor as he shouted, “Touchdown!” He had just tasted Katie Lee’s warming Slow-Cooker Buffalo Chicken Chili and was quick to get fans just as hyped as he was for everything else set to go down this week.

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“Best. Day. Ever.” — Alton’s Tournament of Terror After-Show

by in Shows, October 5th, 2016

No stranger to Cutthroat Kitchen — or the evilicious escapades it’s been known to dish out to chefs and the judges alike — Antonia Lofaso had every right to be suspicious of a seemingly too-good-to-be-true sabotage during tonight’s new After-Show. Alton Brown introduced her to what he deemed “a little bitty haunted kitchen,” and he set her up with everything she’d need to execute deviled eggs: the ingredients, the tools and the space. But that didn’t stop her from trying to find out the horrors she (rightly) imagined would be there. After all, this was following Heat 2 of the Tournament of Terror, where the situation has been known to take a diabolical turn.

“You’re going to, like, start throwing things at me,” she predicted plainly. “Nothing is going to, like, grab me?” she questioned Alton. “OK, so what are they — what are you going to do?” she asked. “Is there something inside of my egg that shouldn’t be there?” Alton assured her there were no such surprises in store. But that didn’t mean there weren’t other horrors awaiting her. With a swift double knock on the exterior of the contraption, Antonia’s kitchen started to move, beginning its eventual 360- degree rotation right before her eyes. “Stop it! You were supposed to let me know that it was going to do that,” she shrieked as she attempted to grab her quickly falling equipment. Meanwhile, Alton, who was much too pleased with the surprise he pulled off, couldn’t help but smile and say: “Best. Day. Ever.”

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Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, October 3rd, 2016

Cream of Wild Mushroom SoupIf you’re skipping meat this Monday (or any day), look to mushrooms to bulk up a dish that would otherwise be made heftier by the addition of meat. Like beef, mushrooms are hearty and earthy, and they pack a filling punch that delivers the satisfaction you crave.

In her recipe for Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup, Ina Garten opts for three varieties of fresh mushrooms — shiitake, portobello and cremini — to add not just flavor but also welcome texture to her fan-favorite soup (there are a whopping 400-plus user reviews of this top-rated recipe). The secret to her soup is making a homemade stock; it’s simmered with mushroom stems and fresh thyme to create a full, bold taste, then it’s used to make up the soup’s broth, which is studded with buttery leeks and the mushroom caps. To add richness, Ina adds white wine, half-and-half and cream for next-level decadence and warming comfort.

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What You Won’t See on TV: Behind the Scenes of All-Star Halloween Spectacular

by in Shows, October 3rd, 2016

All-Star Halloween SpectacularThis Halloween, five of your favorite stars from Food Network, HGTV and Travel Channel are coming together for the first time ever — and it’s not to go trick-or-treating. On All-Star Halloween Spectacular, airing Saturday, Oct. 8 at 8|7c, they’ll face off in teams — Drew Scott and Tia Mowry versus Jonathan Scott and Duff Goldman, with Adam Richman and Egypt Sherrod on hand as well — in an extravaganza of building, cake baking and downright scary-good times as they create life-size haunted houses right in the heart of Sin City. They’ll be working against the clock to not only wow with a ghoulish display fit for fright night, but also sweet-tooth-satisfying confections worthy of the competition.

We joined the crew in Las Vegas to watch some of the creations come together behind the scenes and to catch up with the crew. Click here and here to watch two Food Network Facebook Live videos of cakes in progress, then check out more Facebook Live videos from HGTV here and here to see Drew and Jonathan on set — with some tricks and treats of their own.

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Basic Parmesan Pomodoro—Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, October 2nd, 2016

Basic Parmesan PomodoroDon’t let of the name of this recipe fool you: This week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week is anything but “basic.” Giada De Laurentiis builds layer upon savory layer of flavor in her fan-favorite recipe, starting with bold garlic, sweet carrots and the rind of nutty Parmesan cheese. When these ingredients are slowly simmered with the canned cherry tomatoes, the taste turns out deeply rich and the texture thick and nearly creamy without the use of cream.

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

Get the Recipe: Basic Parmesan Pomodoro

How to Make Your Own Pumpkin Spice Latte Base

by in Shows, October 1st, 2016

How to Make Your Own Pumpkin Spice Latte BaseApple orchards are open, leaves have begun to turn and, perhaps most importantly, Pumpkin Spice Lattes are back at your favorite coffee shop — fall is officially in session. While you may indeed crave the piping-hot comfort of a fragrant PSL, there are more ways to indulge in that seasonal flavor than in a cup of joe. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts showed off a simple way to create your own rich, boldly flavored Pumpkin Spice Latte Base, which you can use to transform whipped cream, oatmeal and more into autumnal dishes.

If you can mix up a few ingredients, you’re well on your way to prepping this five-minute recipe. Start with a can of smooth pumpkin puree, then sweeten it up with brown sugar and mix in flavorful additions, including, of course, the requisite pumpkin pie spice. This fuss-free combo will keep for up to two weeks in the refrigerator; it’s a grab-and-use way to boost the taste of your favorite plates. To start, try it in Pumpkin Spice Latte Sweet Dip with creamy ricotta for a next-level dessert.

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Curry-Style Cooking: Fresh, Family-Focused Mealtime on Ayesha’s Homemade

by in Shows, September 29th, 2016

Ayesha's HomemadeWhen Ayesha Curry heads into the kitchen, she’s not just prepping a quick meal for herself; she’s thinking about her husband, NBA great Stephen, and their young daughters as well, all of whom bring hearty appetites to the table. Beginning this fall, you can join Ayesha in the kitchen for a taste of what’s on her menu, as she’s kicking off her brand-new series, Ayesha’s Homemade, on Saturday, Oct. 22 at 12|11c.

Just like her husband on the court, Ayesha, a cookbook author and social media aficionado, has a game plan when it comes to family-friendly cooking. She’s known for turning out time-tested recipes and contemporary showstoppers alike, all with easy and approachable prep work ideal for everyday meals and dressed-up gatherings alike. Updated takes on brunch staples, party-ready stuffed peppers, holiday-worthy mac and cheese — these slam-dunk favorites and more craveable recipes are all in the works in Ayesha’s kitchen. She knows just what it takes to wow the crowd, and when she and her family open up their home to viewers, she’ll show you her secrets for making it happen.

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The “Seance Board” Speaks — Alton’s Tournament of Terror After-Show

by in Shows, September 28th, 2016

No matter the day or time, the Cutthroat Kitchen arena is often brimming with eviliciousness. But in tonight’s premiere heat of the Tournament of Terror, Alton Brown-turned-Hannibal Lecter upped the diabolical factor immeasurably and brought in spooky spirits to control a sabotage. After two rounds of downright scary-good challenges, the host introduced the “CTK Seance Board,” which let the spirits, not the doomed chef, select ingredients for a blood orange dessert in Round 3.

Chef Richard Blais, the judge of the day who donned a “Clarice Darling” getup like a champion, tried his hand at the board on the After-Show — and let’s just say that he was all too eager to partake in the experience. “The spirits are with me!” he proclaimed, with his eyes closed and head thrown back as the spirits (or rather the spirits of the Bob hidden in the table) took control. “What do the spirits want you to have?” Alton questioned, as Richard’s hand was dragged across the board on a figure before it ultimately landed on blood oranges. The judge took his fruit in stride, but little did he know the horrors that awaited him: first a clown sidekick, then a menacing shower prep station that required careful manipulation.

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