All Posts By Ricky Smith

Anthony Anderson Visits America’s Best Fests on the New Show Carnival Cravings

by in Shows, July 23rd, 2015

Anthony AndersonThere isn’t much you can’t wrap with bacon or deep-fry, and Anthony Anderson is out to prove it, trying every insanely indulgent treat along the way on his new show, Carnival Cravings. Premiering Wednesday, Aug. 12 at 10|9c, this epic coast-to-coast trip promises all of the crispy, crunchy, cheesy and chocolatey snacks you can imagine (and some you can’t).

One of the most-exciting parts about summer is getting to eat outdoors in the sun, and there’s no better collection of open-air options than at a carnival. Anthony’s getting the most out of these massive gatherings, trying blow-your-mind bites like mac-and-cheese-stuffed burgers, lobster dogs and even a deep-fried root beer float (yes, you read that right). And he’s having plenty of fun along the way, with everything from a pig race to a bubblegum-blowing contest.

Get a List of the Carnivals

Take a Seat at the Table for Valerie’s Home Cooking

by in Shows, July 8th, 2015

Valerie Bertinelli is showing viewers how easy it is to prepare modern versions of her family favorites. Starting Saturday, Aug. 8 at 12|11c, the Golden Globe winner, best-selling cookbook author and co-host of Kids Baking Championship invites her closest friends over for mouthwatering meals and, of course, lots of laughs on Valerie’s Home Cooking.

Find Out More About the Show

From Trash Fish to Treasure — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, July 7th, 2015


Things got fishy tonight on an all-new Chopped when Ted Allen announced that the entree basket would contain something known as trash fish, or porgy — a type of fish that used to be a cast-off. That along with olive tapenade, blood oranges and vermicelli (rice) noodles made up the required ingredients, which proved challenging. Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Geoffrey Zakarian took on the basket during a new installment of Chopped After Hours.

Amanda’s plan gets off to a rough start as she tries to deep-fry the rice noodles and realizes they’re not getting crisp. She makes some adjustments to speed up the process. “I cranked this, too, because I know my other chef competitors, they would like to use the fryer as well,” she says. “Look how considerate I am!” Geoffrey is convinced otherwise, asking where she put his pink peppercorns, which are actually on the ledge above his stove.

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A Side of Crazy with Your ‘Cue — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, June 16th, 2015


There was no escaping smoky flavors on tonight’s episode of Chopped, as each basket contained barbecue-themed ingredients. That was no problem for judges Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Maneet Chauhan as they dug into the entree basket after the competitors left the set. On an all-new Chopped After Hours, they took on some classic ‘cue ingredients: North Carolina BBQ sauce, avocado, rainbow chard and spareribs.

“The other barbecue sauce, you’re kind of stuck going down one road,” Marc says. “Here you can go maybe more on the Asian side or probably maybe Indian direction.” Everyone else agrees that they are happy about the choice of sauce. Maneet ends up going in a completely different direction, trying her hand at making a Brazilian stew called feijoada. It includes rice, which she decides to make in the microwave. Ted thinks it’s a great time-saver, saying “I don’t know why more people don’t do that!”

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Maestros of Spice — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, June 2nd, 2015


Things got spicy on tonight’s episode of Chopped, with all of the baskets packing some heat — including dessert. While most would be hesitant to make something sweet from a basket full of fiery foods, the Chopped judges — Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy and Maneet Chauhan — handled it flawlessly, using some very out-of-the-box combinations after the episode ended. On an all-new Chopped After Hours, they try their hand at the dessert round with chile pepper honey, devil’s food tres leches cake, pink lemons and canary melon.

“You’ve got to make sure you taste your ingredients before you cook with them,” Marc says as he coughs from the heat of the chile pepper honey. When Ted points out that he can assure Marc the canary melon is not hot and will offer some relief, Marc doubts his assurance, saying, “Well, maybe — you know — in the Chopped basket they might have infused the hot in here somehow. They might have put, like, a syringe in here!”

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May the Best Cake Win: Bakers to Battle for $10,000 in a New Series

by in Shows, May 28th, 2015

In the new series Cake Wars, premiering Monday, June 29th at 8|7c, four expert bakers aim to win their jaw-dropping cake a spot at a major party or special event. With Jonathan Bennett hosting, each of the bakers will bake one-of-a-kind creations with the hopes of impressing well-known pastry chef Ron Ben-Israel, Fonuts co-owner Waylynn Lucas and some very special guest judges. Each week, only one contestant will take the cake to headline the main event, and take home the sweet grand prize of $10,000.

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QUIZ: Which Destination Is Your Best Bet for Summer BBQ?

by in Restaurants, May 15th, 2015

Barbecue is a huge part of summer eats. It’s hard to find any outdoor gathering during the warmer months that doesn’t include sauce-slathered ribs, tender brisket or at least some smoked chops. And while you’ve probably got your favorite local joint, the options across the country are only increasing. Barbecue has become a highly respected cuisine in America, with spots serving up everything from bigger-than-your-head ribs to classic blue plate specials. Take the quiz below to find out where you should venture to get the best ‘cue this summer.

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5 Spring Soups to Brighten Up the Dinner Table

by in Recipes, May 7th, 2015

Get excited, because your love for soup no longer has to be put away with your winter jacket and scarf. Just because it’s getting warmer outside doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a comforting bowl of avocado soup or a ginger-carrot creation. In fact, these soups were made for sunnier times. Just like as chili warms you up while it’s snowing outside, there are chilled concoctions that can cool you down and nutrient-rich spring veggie versions that can boost your energy. Either way, soup lovers, rejoice!

Chilled Avocado Soup (pictured above)
Move on over, guacamole — there’s a new avocado dish in town. Marcela Valladolid’s Chilled Avocado Soup, served cold , is a beautiful dinner option for the warmer months. With a bit of spice from serrano chiles and fresh flavor from the avocado and lemon juice, it would be a surefire hit at any spring get-together.

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6 Breakfast Pastries That Are Totally Worth the Carbs

by in Recipes, April 30th, 2015

Breakfast for dinner is always a fun way to mix things up, but what about having dessert for breakfast? Besides those few times you ate chocolate cake on a Saturday morning, it’s probably not something you think of often. But with pastries like warm, sticky cinnamon rolls and apple turnovers stuffed with syrupy filling, it’s definitely possible to satisfy your sweet tooth before 10 a.m.

Strawberry Muffins (pictured above)
Make these beauties over the weekend and have a quick breakfast to go during the week. Whether you eat them at room temperature or heat them up with a little pat of butter, they’re sure to give you the right dose of sweetness.

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QUIZ: Which City Should You Eat Pizza In?

by in Restaurants, April 28th, 2015

Does the local pizza joint know your order the second they realize it’s you on the phone? It might be time to branch out and try something out of your comfort zone. After all, pizza comes in lots of different styles. From Chicago’s deep and cheesy to the classic New York slice, we’ve got your ideal pizza style.

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