All Posts By Sara Levine

Sara Levine is a Senior Online Editor at FoodNetwork.com and a culinary-school-trained home cook. Several years ago she quit her magazine job to go to Le Cordon Bleu, which led to a stint in Food Network Kitchen. Although cooking professionally wasn’t her thing, she loves frequenting restaurants and putting her own amateur culinary skills to work in her tiny kitchen.

Restaurant Revisited: Pelican Grill

by in Shows, April 25th, 2012

Robert Irvine swooped into Seabrook, Texas, to help owners John and Laura Walker save their breakfast and lunch spot, the Pelican Grill. The Walkers filled us in on how business is going a few months after their Restaurant: Impossible makeover.

Three months later, the Pelican Grill is thriving with a 40 percent increase in business and expanded hours that include dinner service.

The success comes on the heels of a bizarre setback. One month after the renovation, a car crashed through the front door of the restaurant in the middle of the night, causing $6,000 in damages. Thanks to the generosity of friends and family, repairs were made quickly and the Pelican Grill remained closed for only eight days.

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What to Watch: Chopped All-Stars

by in Shows, April 6th, 2012

chopped judges and group
Chopped All-Stars is back for a second season, and this year’s tournament kicks off with some very heavy hitters. On Sunday night at 9pm/8c, four Iron Chefs will do battle outside their Kitchen Stadium comfort zone. Cat Cora, Marc Forgione, Jose Garces and Michael Symon are all determined to cook their hearts out and take home the win. Of course, only one of them will advance to the final round for a chance to score $50,000 for their charity of choice. Check out our list to see which charity each chef is playing for.

Needless to say, this round should be a nail-biter for judges Scott Conant, Aarón Sanchez and Geoffrey Zakarian. Who won’t make it past the appetizer round? Which two will go head-to-head on dessert? Tune in to watch four seasoned competitors throw down in the Chopped Kitchen this Sunday at 9pm/8c.

Join the #Chopped conversation on Twitter during Sunday’s episode.

Macaroons for Passover, or Anytime

by in Holidays, Recipes, April 5th, 2012

Passover Macaroons
Like most of our family gatherings, Passover in my house is all about the food. No one misses bread when you’ve got steaming bowls of matzo ball soup, homemade gefilte fish (never the slimy kind from a jar), fork-tender brisket and half a dozen sides. But come dessert time, I used to wish for the flour and leavening agents that are forbidden on Passover.

My grandmother was an excellent baker throughout the rest of the year, but her annual spread of kosher-for-Passover cakes and cookies left something (okay, a lot) to be desired. And for some reason, back when she and my grandfather hosted the Seder, the macaroons always came from a can.

This was a travesty. The flourless coconut macaroon is a staple of Passover — it might as well be on the Seder plate next to the horseradish and shank bone. But those canned cookies always smelled weird and had an odd, waxy texture. I grew up thinking I didn’t really like macaroons and left them untouched. French-style macarons — yes, please. Jewish-style coconut macaroons — no thanks.

Chocolate-Dipped Passover Macaroons

Restaurant Revisited: Valley View

by in Shows, March 14th, 2012

restaurant impossible valley view

As of February 2012:

Three months later, new General Manager Kelly says the freshness of the new dining room has not waned for her.

Kelly now holds employee meetings to train staff on food safety and proper customer service. She and Kim also meet weekly with their newly hired chef, Matt, to go over any kitchen issues.

Chef Matt has become Kim’s right-hand man. He’s helping to bring in more fresh ideas, and today there are very few frozen items on the menu. Kelly is excited for Chef Matt’s new menu to roll out — she can’t wait to see customers’ reactions.

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Marcus Samuelsson Chats With Fans on Facebook

by in Community, Shows, February 24th, 2012

Marcus Samuelsson

Tonight on an all-new Food Network special, Savoring Harlem, Chef Marcus Samuelsson leads us on a mouth-watering culinary tour of this iconic New York City neighborhood, showcasing the food culture of long-time staples like Sylvia’s as well as his own 18-month-old restaurant, Red Rooster Harlem.

This afternoon, Chef Samuelsson, a Chopped judge, Next Iron Chef competitor and Harlem resident, answered questions from our Facebook fans. In case you missed it, here are some of the highlights: Read more

Good Eats Finale Airs Tonight

by in Shows, February 10th, 2012

Alton Brown

After 14 seasons, hundreds of recipes and dozens of memorable characters (Lactose Man! The Yeasts!), Alton Brown is bidding farewell to Good Eats. The final episode, an homage to dark chocolate, airs tonight at 8pm/7c.

Fans of our beloved food-science geek need not panic — you’ll still see plenty of Alton on Food Network. He’s got a major new role on the upcoming season of Food Network Star, commentates on Iron Chef America and serves as host of The Next Iron Chef. Plus, classic Good Eats episodes will continue to rerun on Food Network and Cooking Channel.

To celebrate Alton’s many years of (exceptionally) Good Eats, we’ve rounded up his 10 most popular recipes from the show. His top recipe, Good Eats Roast Turkey, is the #1 recipe on FoodNetwork.com with a whopping 3,905 five-star reviews and counting. It has graced thousands of your Thanksgiving tables since 1999, and we’re guessing many of you also made #8 or #9 (or both!) for last Sunday’s big game.

Alton’s 10 most popular recipes from the show »

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Q&A With Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian

by in Shows, December 19th, 2011

There’s officially a new Iron Chef in Kitchen Stadium! Geoffrey Zakarian prevailed in the final showdown, a full-out Kitchen Stadium battle that celebrated the holiday feasts we’re all looking forward to right now. Now he’s joining the prestigious ranks of Marc Forgione, Bobby Flay, Masaharu Morimoto, Cat Cora, Jose Garces and Michael Symon.

Iron Chef Zakarian is chef-partner at The Lambs Club and The National Bar and Dining Rooms in New York City and Tudor House in Miami. He’s also a veteran judge on Chopped. After surviving all 10 of the Chairman’s intense challenges, plus a couple of Secret Ingredient Showdowns, we have no doubt that he’ll have much success in Kitchen Stadium.

We sat down to chat with Zakarian about the intense Next Iron Chef experience. “It’s like the game of golf,” says the newly crowned Iron Chef, an avid golfer. “If you have a bad hole, you just go to the next hole and you have to get the last hole out of your head. Anybody can beat anybody any day of the week.”

Read on for our exclusive interview. Read more

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Hamptons Fun Facts — The Next Iron Chef

by in Shows, December 14th, 2011


Behind the scenes on The Next Iron Chef, Food Network’s culinary production team is responsible for making sure that the rival chefs have everything they need to cook and present their dishes — from a stocked pantry to plenty of serving vessels. This week they shared some fun facts about what it took to pull off the penultimate episode’s Montauk seafood challenge.

In the Hamptons, the chefs purchased fish from Gosman’s Fish Market. All the fish had been caught that morning or the previous day. What was available to them?
Lobster, mussels, clams, fluke, black bass, bluefish and tuna

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