All Posts In Behind the Scenes

Competitive Grilling in the Great Outdoors: Ted Allen on the Challenges of Chopped Grill Masters

by in Behind the Scenes, Shows, July 6th, 2015

Ted Allen on Grill MastersFor the second time in the show’s history, Chopped headed out of the studio and into the great outdoors for Grill Masters. The cast traded in their dress shoes and city blacks for boots and overalls — well, almost! Production moved the entire crew to Queens County Farm on the outskirts of New York City to tape the special grilling tournament, premiering July 14 at 10|9c. FN Dish caught up with host Ted Allen to chat about the challenges the location posed as well as the challenges the competitors will face.

“We’re a studio show, for the most part, and you forget how easy you have it shooting indoors,” says Ted, referring to the fact that Chopped tapes at Food Network headquarters in New York City, which is a whole lot comfier than roughing it in the Tucson desert like the cast and crew did for the previous Grill Masters season — just think sand everywhere. For Season 2 everything still had to happen outdoors, and even though a more convenient location was chosen, it didn’t mean it would be that much easier — there was still the chance of inclement weather, among other uncontrollable factors.

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Go Behind the Scenes: Take a Photo Tour of the Cutthroat Kitchen Set

by in Behind the Scenes, Shows, February 11th, 2015

While Cutthroat Kitchen may serve as home to Food Network’s most-diabolical cooking arena, it’s also a fully functional and well-outfitted kitchen, brimming with hundreds of ingredients, dozens of pots and pans, and enough tools and equipment to arm four chefs in battle — plus a single briefcase filled with $100,000, of course. Recently FN Dish traveled to the set of Cutthroat Kitchen for an insider’s look at what makes the space so special, including its close-quartered pantry, wall-to-wall shelves of gear and the chalkboard full of evilicious inspiration. We also caught up with Katie Allen, the show’s culinary producer, who’s responsible for equipping the kitchen, and she dished that during each week of filming, her team accepts a delivery of “43 boxes of vegetables, fruits and herbs,” and that’s just for the fresh produce. When it comes to food prep, there are some “86 pots and pans available on set”; for plating, no fewer than “27 varieties of plates, 16 varieties of bowls, 9 different types of glasses, and 21 different types of small dipping bowls, plates and spoon options” are available to the chefs during the contest.

Click the photo below to check out a behind-the-scenes photo tour of the set and peek inside the refrigerator, and look up close at the myriad ingredients, serving pieces, tools and utensils at the ready in each battle.

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Sunny Dishes on Episode 1 of The Kitchen + Offers Behind the Scenes Photos

by in Behind the Scenes, Food Network Chef, Shows, January 6th, 2014

The Kitchen Episode 1by Sunny Anderson

Haaaiii! It’s Sunny Anderson on the FN Dish check-in. On behalf of Katie Lee, Marcela Valladolid, Jeff Mauro and Geoffrey “GZ” Zakarian, as well as the crew, set design, culinary staff, producers and more — welcome to The Kitchen. I’ve been asked to share some behind-the-scenes bits. Make sure to come back next week when Jeff shares what’s really happening on set!

I hope you enjoyed the show and found it to be something you can put to work in your very own kitchen. This is the first of what we hope to be many episodes that will share recipes, quick fixes and fun chats about all things food and entertaining. Speaking of entertaining, I am too excited that I got to share the Lotus Flower Candle with you today. I’ve been holding it for months wanting to blab all about it on social media. In a world where I tweet cute pics of my cats sleeping, it’s easy to say keeping this cool entertainment “gadget” to myself for so long was hard. I really like this show for that reason — it’s truly host driven, with a huge help of a production staff. We all bring ideas from our personal lives to share with you. It reminds me of show-and-tell in grade school. I still don’t know how the crew disabled the flower so it wouldn’t play the costly “Happy Birthday” song. Just know if you look for them online, all of the ones I’ve found play the tune, so hopefully you get it for someone’s birthday cake or you know someone crafty who can disable the music. Where’s MacGruber when you need him?

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The Original Pitmaster and First ShedHed, Brad Orrison

by in Behind the Scenes, Shows, August 19th, 2013

Shed fans know that Brad Orrison is the mastermind behind The Shed, the mecca for barbecue in southern Mississippi, but what fans might not know is that Hobson wasn’t the original pit master — it was Brad. “Food was always a passion for the family,” Brad recently told FN Dish. “During my college years I opened both a pizzeria and sushi joint. But what I loved the most was the aspect of barbecue.” From the restaurant’s inception to date, Brad has worn many hats.

Click on the play button on the video above and get to know Brad a little better.

Take an Exclusive Video Tour of The Shed

by in Behind the Scenes, Shows, August 3rd, 2013

More than just a barbecue joint, The Shed is an experience, full of unforgettable people, live blues jams and, of course, a seemingly never-ending supply of saucy ribs, pork, chicken and brisket. You’ll get to see firsthand the work that the Orrisons — the first family of Mississippi Barbecue — put into making their business run smoothly when they share a sneak peek of their upcoming series, The Shed, tomorrow at 10pm/9c.

Before then, however, FN Dish is giving fans the first look at The Shed and an exclusive opportunity to hear from Brad and Brooke, the brother-and-sister founders of The Shed. Click the play button on the video above to get an insider’s look at the property’s junkyard, Brad’s never-before-seen outdoor office and a glimpse inside The Shed’s kitchen, where Hobson— the pit master — has prepared nearly 1 million pounds of barbecue.

Tune in Sunday at 10pm/9c to catch a sneak-peek episode of The Shed, then watch Monday at 10pm/9c to see the season premiere.

Meet the cast

Food Network Stars Dish on Grilling Preferences

by in Behind the Scenes, Food Network Chef, July 12th, 2013

It’s probably no surprise that if you ask Bobby Flay to choose between a burger and a hot dog, he’ll probably laugh and expect you to know better. But if given the choice between barbecue chicken and steak — what do you think he’d say?

FN Dish caught up with Bobby, Michael Symon, Guy Fieri, Marc Forgione, Masaharu Morimoto, Aarón Sánchez and Andrew Zimmern to ask them several grilling rapid-fire questions, perfect for the hot summer months.

Click play on the video above to hear what each had to say about charcoal and gas grills, hot dogs versus burgers and barbecue chicken versus steak.

Voice your opinion by voting in these polls

Behind the Booklet: 50 Easy Appetizers

by in Behind the Scenes, Food Network Magazine, November 27th, 2012

50 easy appetizers
Hors d’oeuvres and appetizers are often the best part of a meal to me. Maybe it’s because finger foods are just more fun to eat or because they’re usually paired with a cocktail. When Food Network Kitchens were coming up with ideas for 50 Easy Appetizers (page 166) for the November issue of Food Network Magazine, the possibilities seemed endless.

Recipes below

Behind the Scenes of Food Network’s Fall Entertaining Guides

by in Behind the Scenes, Holidays, October 8th, 2012


One of the most recent additions to the Food Network website is the addition of product guides, guides in which readers are offered insight into some of the products that editors believe are among the best in helpful cooking tools, tabletop items and edibles available online. A lot of these product guides are tied to the season, like Food Network’s Summer Cookbook Guide. In August the editors began working on our fall product guide. Thanksgiving may be several weeks away, but we have to start working on these guides as early as the summer months to make sure that every edible product that gets selected for the guide has been tested (i.e. eaten) and approved by our staff.

For about two weeks, our office was flooded with an array of samples — from gourmet marshmallows to specialty cocktail mixes and Thanksgiving gumballs (turkey-flavored included!). After organizing a formal tasting within Food Network’s digital department and consuming probably 20 times more than our daily allowance of sugar, the most-popular products were chosen.

Keep reading for our final picks

Stacked Stuff: It’s National Pancake Day

by in Behind the Scenes, Events, September 26th, 2012


Food Network Kitchens celebrate National Pancake Day by seeing how many flapjacks they can stack at once; click the play button on the video above to watch.

Tell us in the comments: How many pancakes do you think were stacked before the tower toppled?

Pancakes are a great way to personalize breakfast and dinner, too. From bacon and corn to triple chocolate, they’re so versatile. Here are five of our new favorite ways to make pancakes: Reinvented: Pancakes 5 Ways.

The Wedding Planner: Robert Irvine Says “I Do”

by in Behind the Scenes, Food Network Magazine, August 16th, 2012

Robert Irvine, Bride, and Guy Fieri

It’s a sunny Thursday in May at the Charles Krug winery in St. Helena, Calif., and Guy Fieri is giving Robert Irvine a shoulder massage.

In a few minutes, Robert will be marrying his girlfriend of three years, professional wrestler Gail Kim, and Guy, one of Robert’s best men, is giving the usually unshakable Restaurant: Impossible host a rubdown to calm his nerves. Just a half hour earlier, Robert was singing a different tune: “I feel the calmest I’ve ever been. I haven’t screamed, not once,” he said as he looked over the grounds where the cocktail hour and reception would take place. This whole wedding is his brainchild — conceived, planned and executed with the same military efficiency Robert brings to the massive two-day restaurant overhauls on his show. But today it won’t be a restaurateur who is dazzled by his work; it will be Gail. Robert has kept her in the dark about the details of the party, including the main event: the food.

“No one goes in there until I say it’s OK!” Robert barks, pointing to the venue. (So much for not screaming.) Satisfied with how everything looks, he throws back a beer in five gulps and keeps moving; the ceremony is about to start.

With Guy at his side, Robert beams as his daughters, Annalise, 15, and Talia, 11, read poems to the crowd, then he lets out an audible sigh of relief when Guy produces the ring and he exchanges vows with Gail.

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