by Maria Russo in Books, April 28th, 2016
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, March 4th, 2016
When Lee Brian Schrager isn’t busy executing two preeminent food and drink festivals — the New York City Wine & Food Festival and the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, both flocked to by your favorite Food Network Stars — he can likely be found on a plane. As vice president of corporate communications at Southern Wine & Spirits, this jet setter is known for scouring the globe not just to find the best dishes far and away, but also to get to know the people behind them.
It was just a few years ago that he and Adeena Sussman, a chef and food writer, put together the ultimate collection of fan-favorite fried chicken hot spots in the country with Fried & True: More Than 50 Recipes for America’s Best Fried Chicken and Sides. Now this cookbook duo has introduced a go-to guide to what’s perhaps the most-important meal of the day: breakfast. America’s Best Breakfasts: Favorite Local Recipes from Coast to Coast is chock-full of more than 60 wake-up-worthy meals from hot-spot eateries and little-known joints alike.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, February 11th, 2016
We’re close to turning the corner from winter to spring, and there’s no better kitchen tool to get you through the last dregs of the cold days and long nights than a Dutch oven. We fell in love with Hillary Davis’ book Le French Oven to keep our kitchens cozy and our winter plates full of stick-to-your-bones dishes.
Davis takes the Dutch oven (or “the French oven,” as she calls it) and helps it reach its full potential as a kitchen workhorse. The book features savory and hearty soup and stew recipes, of course, but also dishes you might not associate with a Dutch oven, including the droolworthy Easy Pizza for Two pictured above. “When we think of Dutch/French ovens, we think of stews or soups. But they are superb at baking. I make bread and pizza in mine on a regular basis,” Davis told us. Read on below to get the recipe for this pizza.
Hear from Davis below as she shares her do’s and don’ts for cooking with a Dutch oven, and find out what she enjoys cooking most in her own Dutch ovens.
by Lauren Miyashiro in Books, December 20th, 2015
Heather Baird of Sprinkle Bakes is back and more delicious than ever with her sophomore cookbook, Sea Salt Sweet. Sea Salt Sweet strikes the perfect balance between the art and the science of pastry and baking with fun, accessible recipes that tickle both your sweet cravings and your salty ones.
We checked in with Baird to get her top do’s and don’ts for using salt. Hear what she has to say below, and read on for some of her favorite salty-sweet flavor combinations. And those brownies up there? Those are Baird’s Double Chocolate Cream Cheese Brownies with Maldon Flake. Check out the recipe for these beauties below.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, Holidays, December 14th, 2015
Love of baked goods but fear of baking is a common kitchen story. If you’re one of those people who is intimidated by baking’s precision or thinks the exactness is boring, think again. Former pastry chef and cookbook author Abby Dodge believes there’s an inner baker in everyone. And she hopes to inspire people to break out the flour and turn on the oven with her newest book, The Everyday Baker (featured in our holiday cookbook gift guide).
Read our interview with Dodge below to find out which recipes she’ll be making this season, the kitchen tools she can’t live without and her biggest baking pet peeves. Plus, grab her recipe for Rosemary-Cornmeal Shortbread (pictured above), her go-to cookie for all occasions. Like all the other recipes in her book, it includes step-by-step photos and thorough twist ideas, so you can be confident in (and have fun with) your holiday cookies this year.
by Regan Burns in Books, Family, Holidays, December 7th, 2015
With the holiday season in full swing, chances are good you’re making your list and checking it twice — and trying to figure out what to give all the important people in your life. From hostess gifts to something for your children’s teacher or your friends from book club, one thing rings true: Everyone loves a delicious holiday treat. Maggie Battista’s new book, Food Gift Love, has you covered on all edible gift fronts.
If the idea of making edible gifts is daunting for you, Food Gift Love is the book to guide you through the holiday season. (It’s also a wonderful gift if you’re not inclined to make edible gifts yourself, but you have friends who enjoy that sort of holiday cooking and baking.) The recipes are elegant and sophisticated without being fussy or difficult to produce. Each one comes together wonderfully easily, and the helpful gift-packaging advice will leave you looking like a holiday rock star with minimal effort. Battista shared her top do’s and don’ts for holiday season edible-gift making with us:
- Host a food-gift-making party. Turn a holiday get-together into a marmalade-making session or chocolate-dipping feast. Attendees can contribute food and gift-wrap supplies. Share the expense, the work, the bounty and the holiday spirit!
- Put a label on it. Be sure to put the name and date prepared (and, if you like, a date by which to consume it) so your recipient knows exactly how long she or he has to enjoy the edible treat this holiday season.
- Regifting gift-wrap is OK. Save old but clean gift-wrap and reuse it for new gifts. Making use of old ribbon and paper multiplies your holiday gift decor options and lengthens their lives before they’re recycled.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, Holidays, December 1st, 2015
When I was a kid, I had a poster on my wall that read, “A book is a present you can open again and again.” And it’s true — books make a perfect holiday gift for kids of all ages.
Some of my favorite books for children are about food. Surely you’ve read The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Green Eggs and Ham, but have you heard of any of these other delicious stories?
Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban
In this classic book, Frances wants to only eat her favorite foods — bread and jam — at every meal, turning up her nose at all the delicious things her family enjoys. Mrs. Badger ultimately gives her what she wants, but Frances soon realizes an important lesson about the importance of variety.
Image courtesy of HarperCollins
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, November 10th, 2015
Any new cookbook from Yvette van Boven feels like an early holiday present to home cooks everywhere, and her newest book, Home Baked, is absolutely no exception. Home Baked is exactly what you’ve come to love and expect from van Boven: vibrant and lovely, with mouthwatering recipes that read like a daydream spilling across the pages of someone’s beloved kitchen journal. The recipes are diverse, ranging from kitchen staples (like Lemon Curd and Sourdough Starter) to fully assembled baked goods (like the Chocolate Fudge with Melted Marshmallows, recipe below for you to try at home). There are showstopping birthday cakes and cookies and baked bars and even treats for your favorite furry friends. Taking it beyond recipes, van Boven has filled Home Baked with wonderful stories, beautiful images of Ireland, and tips and tricks for making sure even your leftover bread and cake scraps don’t go to waste.
When it comes to avoiding the stress of crunch time in her holiday baking routine, van Boven’s trick is simple: “I’m quite a planner,” she told FN Dish. “I make lists. Good thing is that I work from home. I can make bread and leave it to proof while I work on something else on the computer at the same time. But I do plan ahead. I hate surprises at the last minute, and I like to sit down with my family and friends once they’re here, without stress.”
by Maria Russo in Books, Contests, Food Network Chef, November 2nd, 2015
When it comes to stocking your home pantry like a professional chef, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better adviser than Alice Waters. Her new book, aptly titled My Pantry, is an eloquent exploration of what Waters keeps on hand in her kitchen all the time. It explores how to make several staple ingredients, like vanilla extract, candied citrus peel and ricotta cheese. It also gives recipes that utilize items from a well-stocked pantry, like superfood granola or Chocolate Nut Bark (recipe below for you to enjoy at home).
My Pantry blends Waters’ lovely writing with her highly craveable food and speaks to how a home pantry can evolve its staple items over time. “My travels to Morocco, Australia and Mexico have influenced what I keep on hand, especially spices,” Waters told FN Dish. “My pantry has also changed through my thinking about the importance of school lunch nutrition — whole grains, fruits and vegetables first.” You can find more about her work improving youth nutrition through better food resources for schools with her Edible Schoolyard Project.
What does Waters say every home cook needs to keep in a well-stocked pantry? The list is surprisingly simple. “You must always have olive oil, vinegar, garlic and spices,” she said. “Plus brown rice, farro pasta and preserved tomatoes.” According to Waters, a good home cook keeps 10 to 15 items on hand at all times, and with My Pantry you’ll find yourself making delicious meals from your pantry shelves multiple times a week. How does Waters choose what to make when she’s cooking from her pantry? “I pick whatever looks inspiring to me or what works with what I have on hand. You can make a delicious simple meal with only three or four ingredients.”
You can order your own copy of My Pantry here.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, Recipes, October 29th, 2015
Given the hectic rush of your kids’ after-school activities, the demands of your late-hours job and even the simple fatigue from the day-to-day hustle and bustle, it can seem nearly impossible to turn out any homemade meals for your family, let alone ones that are good for you. But Giada De Laurentiis is out to prove just the opposite. In her brand-new cookbook, Happy Cooking: Make Every Meal Count … Without Stressing Out, she’ll show just how easy it can be not only to work healthy, wholesome meal prep into your daily routine but to enjoy the process of doing so as well.
Giada knows a thing or two about this all-important balancing act. When she’s not starring on Food Network Star or hosting Giada in Italy or Giada’s Holiday Handbook (premiering Sunday, Nov. 8 at 11a|10c), she’s likely in Las Vegas overseeing her premiere restaurant, Giada, or at home with her young daughter, so you can be sure that the tips, techniques and recipes she introduces in this all-in-one lifestyle book are not only inspired but also tried-and-true. In Happy Cooking you’ll be able to find almost 200 recipes, including wake-up-worthy breakfasts like granola and lemony pancakes, hearty fare like lasagna, and snacks for anytime, plus helpful how-tos for entertaining during the holiday season.
The potential for that box of pasta sitting on your pantry shelf is almost limitless, as The Four Seasons of Pasta is here to prove. Written by mother-daughter team Nancy Harmon Jenkins and Sara Jenkins, this book stretches the classic standby ingredient into new and delightfully flavorful seasonal meals. Think Pasta alla Carbonara for spring, Spaghetti with SunBurst Tomatoes for summer, a hearty Ragu Bolognese for winter, or the Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Sage for autumn (recipe below for you to try at home).
And though you’ve likely been making pasta since you first learned to boil water, heed Nancy and Sara’s advice for a truly exceptional pasta dish:
1. Make sure your pasta water is abundant — 5 or 6 quarts for a standard 500-gram (about 1 pound) box of pasta.
2. Be sure you bring it to a rolling boil.