All Posts In Food Network Chef

Your Next Family Dinner Winner: A DIY Baked Potato Bar

by in Food Network Chef, Recipes, November 1st, 2015

Melissa d'ArabianEvery Saturday we do a family movie or game night. On the menu is some version of a DIY dinner: Make your own pizza, build your own burrito bowl, taco night, you get the idea. Lately my kids are very into the baked potato bar. And because I love to buy potatoes in the 10-pound bag (compare the per-pound price and it’s hard to pass up that bag!), I am all for this fun and inexpensive movie night meal.

Now that I’m a bit of a potato bar expert with more than a few under my belt, I want to share some surprise bonuses to putting this on your menu. I mean, of course baked potatoes are tasty, but check out this list of truly awesome extras.

Bonus 1: Making a ton of potatoes doesn’t really take any longer than making a few. So this meal is ideal for slumber parties, classroom get-togethers and casual entertaining. The only limit is the size of your oven, and a standard oven fits a lot of potatoes.

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Anne Burrell Has Done It Again: How She Mentored a Worst Cooks Recruit to Red Team Victory

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, October 30th, 2015

Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity EditionFresh off her Worst Cooks in America, Season 6 win not even one year ago, Anne Burrell has done it again: She successfully mentored a culinary novice from worst to first place. Only this time the victorious recruit wasn’t a home cook; she was a bona fide A-lister. As Jenni “JWoww” Farley of The Jersey Shore successfully outcooked her finale rival, Kendra Wilkinson, she not only claimed the title of best of the worst for herself, but she also scored another Red Team victory for her mentor, Anne. FN Dish caught up with Anne recently to look back on what it took to mentor the celebrities and to chat about her secret to success after clinching five wins in just seven seasons of the Worst Cooks franchise.

What was it like competing against and working with Rachael Ray, as opposed to Tyler Florence, your regular Worst Cooks in America co-host?
Anne Burrell: It was a different ball of wax. Tyler is great, but Rachel brought a bit of levity to an already very fun and silly situation. Well, a very fun and silly and serious situation. But Rachael and I got along just so well. It was great working with another girl chef.

Did you have any preconceived notions about what these celebs would be like in the kitchen, since they are so visibly in the public eye?
AB: No, and I was nervous that there was going to be, like, a whole bunch of divas and people being like, “Ah, I’m not going to do that.” But we did not have one in the bunch, and everybody really readily embraced the entire thing. It was really delightful.

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Thanksgiving with Giada: Aunt Raffy’s Hosting, Crispy Dressing at the Ready and Next-Day Turkey Sandwiches

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, October 28th, 2015

Thanksgiving with Giada De Laurentiis“I wanted to show people how to successfully put on a party beyond the recipes — the whole picture — and to take the stress out of throwing a party,” Giada De Laurentiis told FN Dish of her new series, Giada’s Holiday Handbook. Premiering Sunday, Nov. 8 at 11a|10c, Giada’s show is the ultimate one-stop guide to everything viewers, both seasonal-soiree novices and those familiar with entertaining, might need to host an unforgettable holiday get-together, from menu planning and crowd-pleasing recipes to home decor inspiration. She told us that it was indeed her fans who first inspired her to think beyond what’s on the plate and pursue the bigger goal of the series. “I think at the end of the day we have very little time in our lives, and the more help we can get, the more successful we can be at home, the better,” she said. “We all want to be successful parents and loved ones, so to make entertaining fast and easy — that was the goal.”

Thanksgiving is one of the first holidays that Giada will explore on Holiday Handbook, and just in time for the premiere, Giada’s giving fans a behind-the-scenes look at what turkey day looks like at her house. Read on below for insider details about her family’s celebrations, and find out how she repurposes the inevitable leftovers from the feast.

What does Thanksgiving look like at your house? Who hosts the holiday every year?  
Giada De Laurentiis: It’s at my Aunt Raffy’s house just about every year. It’ll be a bit smaller this year, about 12 people, because some people are traveling, but I always look forward to it. I haven’t seen my aunt since filming Giada in Italy in Positano, so it’ll be super-exciting to see her!

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Season 2 of Foodie Call with Justin Warner: Spam S’mores

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, October 26th, 2015

Those of you familiar with Food Network Star Season 8 winner Justin Warner know that the self-taught cook and popular Brooklyn restaurant owner has some seriously creative ideas when it comes to food. In Season 2 of his Food Network Web series Foodie Call, Justin meets with industry pros to chat about their hot-topic specialty foods, and then wows each of them by coming up with entirely new ways to use the ingredient in a dish. Just wait until you see which classic American pork product he’s tackling for the first episode of the new season. (No, it’s not bacon!).

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Enter to Win a Signed Copy of Robert Irvine’s New Book, Fit Fuel

by in Books, Contests, Food Network Chef, October 19th, 2015

Fit Fuel: A Chef's Guide to Eating Well, Getting Fit, and Living Your Best LifeAs committed as Robert Irvine is to executing top-notch dishes in the kitchen and giving struggling restaurateurs a second chance at success on Restaurant: Impossible Ambush (premiering Thursday, Oct. 22 at 9|8c), he’s also a fierce fitness guru, dedicated to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and inspiring others to do the same. In his brand-new book, Fit Fuel: A Chef’s Guide to Eating Well, Getting Fit, and Living Your Best Life, Robert breaks down the ins and outs of what it takes to “fuel your life”: just a handful of “principles,” including “Eat real food” and “Believe you can change.”

Part cookbook, part pep talk and part handy exercise manual, Robert’s brand-new publication doesn’t just talk the talk of what it takes to get in shape, but it also walks the walk as Robert personally demonstrates how to complete some of the best moves, and explains the whys and hows behind them. And with his recipes for every meal of the day — even dessert — Robert proves that the journey to fitness success doesn’t have to mean boring, bland meals. Think satisfying fare like Sesame Shrimp Chopped Salad, Roast Chicken, Vegetables & Parsnip Puree and A Better Carrot Cake.

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One-on-One with Patricia Heaton: All About Her New Series and Why Debra Barone Scared Her Away from Lemon Chicken

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, October 15th, 2015

Patricia HeatonPatricia Heaton, the TV sitcom mom you know and love from Everybody Loves Raymond and The Middle, is known among her friends and family for throwing welcoming, enjoyable parties — and beginning this fall, you’re invited to attend them. On her brand-new series, Patricia Heaton Parties, premiering Saturday, Oct. 24 at 12|11c, Patricia is welcoming viewers into her kitchen for a look at how she serves up simple yet craveable bites ideal for entertaining, all while enjoying herself with guests, including several of her co-stars on The Middle.

Just in time for the premiere, FN Dish caught up with Patricia to find out more about her penchant for giving parties and her strategy for stress-free party planning. Read on below for an exclusive interview with Patricia to see what two must-haves are always on the menu at her house and learn how her former Everybody Loves Raymond character, Debra Barone, has influenced her in the kitchen.

What can fans expect from your brand-new series?
Patricia Heaton: I’m really excited to have my fans join me for casual get-togethers with my friends and family. I’ll be sharing recipes that are easy and delicious.

What are you most excited about showing viewers and inspiring in them?
PH: I think it’s easy to be intimidated by the idea of cooking for guests. A great way to dip your toe into the water is inviting people over for cocktails and appetizers — casual and fun.

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Robert Irvine Exclusive: No One Expects an Ambush

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, October 13th, 2015

Robert IrvineFor the past 11 seasons of Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine has given seemingly hopeless restaurateurs second chances at success, completing dream transformations, both within the four walls of the eateries and beyond, as he’s worked with owners to evolve their business savvy. On the brand-new season of Restaurant: Impossible Ambush, he’ll do all of that again — but this time, the owners don’t know he’s coming.

Premiering Thursday, Oct. 22 at 9|8c, Restaurant: Impossible Ambush will show what happens when Robert and his team drop by unannounced, all set to take over an unsuspecting owner’s business, and what results simply cannot be anticipated. From pure elation to downright dissatisfaction, the reactions to Robert’s impromptu renovations are as variable as the issues plaguing the failing eateries. If you thought that owners were shocked — and perhaps a bit annoyed — by Robert’s advice even when they requested it, imagine what might ensue when he shows up without an invitation.

Just in time for this month’s premiere, Robert gave FN Dish an insider’s look at what’s ahead on Ambush. Read on below for an exclusive interview with the host and find out what he wants to say to the stubborn owners he’s met along the way.

What can fans expect from the Ambush renovations? How are these episodes different than past Restaurant: Impossible shows?
Robert Irvine: Crazy! For 11 seasons [of] Restaurant: Impossible, the viewers knew that the guests, or the people I was going to help, knew I was coming. I was the only one that didn’t know where I was going. Season 12 Ambush, let me tell you, they have no idea I’m coming, and I have no idea where I’m going. And what happens when I walk in the door truly is up to them: how they react, how I speak to them, how they lose their cool. And do they want me there? That’s the big question. … I’ve got to tell you, it’s not like any other Restaurant: Impossible we have ever, ever done. It’s exciting. It is gripping. It’s chilling. It’s nail-biting. And you’ll never know what’s going to happen, ’cause every turn is something different.

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10 Recipes Every Alex Guarnaschelli Fan Should Master

by in Food Network Chef, Recipes, October 12th, 2015

10 Recipes Every Alex Guarnaschelli Fan Should MasterYou may know Alex Guarnaschelli best as a judge on Chopped or for mentoring All-Star Academy home cooks to culinary success. As a skilled Iron Chef, Alex wows fans with her elegant and approachable dishes, which combine the comforting flavors of American, Italian and French cuisines. Keep reading below for more of Alex’s best-ever recipes, like her tried-and-true chocolate cake and her decadent eggplant parmigiana that is sure to please a crowd. Plus, get a behind-the-scenes look at Butter Restaurant in New York City, where she cooks up seasonal dishes when she’s not on camera or at home.

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Apple Picking in New England and What I’m Cooking with 20 Pounds of Apples

by in Food Network Chef, Recipes, October 10th, 2015

Apple Crumbple with Cardamom-Vanilla Caramel SaucePhilippe and I took our family apple picking last weekend in a lush, green New Hampshire orchard, and my love for this perfectly crisp, juicy, sweet fruit has been renewed. Watching my sweet daughter Charlotte reach up to a tree heavy with ruby-red fruit and pluck her first apple ever warmed my heart. And seeing Océane nibble on two different apples — one in each hand, while the picking bag, full of fruit, hung heavy looped around her tiny forearm — had me smiling (and mentally preparing for the aftermath of letting four girls freely pick as many apples as they wished). I wondered just how many apples the Transportation Security Administration would let us stash in our carry-on suitcases (the answer: a lot, but only after being pulled out of line for a thorough swabbing of the 20 or so pounds of apples we packed).

During the past few days since our trip to the orchard, we’ve snacked on more apples than I thought possible, given apples to each of the girls’ teachers (and the girls’ teachers from last year, because why leave them out?) and we still have two huge fruit bowls brimming with apples of all kinds. We have tart, firm cooking apples, crisp eating varieties, thick-skinned greenish apples that I don’t recognize but love once I get past the reptile-like skin, trusty red apples and Golden Delicious apples. I’m baking up some basics: my favorite Classic Apple Tart (with an easy butter crust that’s unbelievably good!), a Quick Cinnamon Apple Tart (perfect for when I’m feeling rushed) and my Apple Crumble with Cardamom-Vanilla Caramel Sauce (pictured above). But apples don’t have to be just for sweets. I’ll add a cup or two of cubed (or julienned) apple to my Fennel and Cabbage Slaw or to my Asian Coleslaw (my personal favorite), where some apple will add just the right level of tangy, sweet and tart to complement the warm ginger and spicy Sriracha. And if we still have a few stragglers left next week that somehow didn’t make it into a recipe or someone’s mouth for an after-school snack, I’ll cube them up and simmer them in a bit of water with a cinnamon stick, a squeeze of lemon juice and a dash of maple syrup (also from our New England trip) and make an easy, chunky compote. (Or you can blend up the mixture for a smoother applesauce.) Now I feel like autumn is official.

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How Food Network Stars Tailgate

by in Food Network Chef, Food Network Magazine, October 8th, 2015

eddie jacksonTailgate or home-gate: Which is better? In the October issue of Food Network Magazine, we learned that Guy Fieri, Aarón Sánchez  and former NFL player Eddie Jackson chose the parking-lot party. So did Sunny Anderson (who would rather be at the MetLife Stadium sipping a coffee spiked with a shot of whiskey). But most Food Network chefs prefer to be at home yelling at the TV during the game.

Read below to learn what they consider their most impressive game-day culinary feat then judge for yourself who deserves the bragging rights. Whether you’re a die-hard fan or more like Katie Lee, who admits she’s too busy stuffing her face with nachos to yell at anyone, you’ll find inspiration for your Sunday spread.

Eddie Jackson

  • Root For: My alma mater’s Arkansas Razorbacks
  • Against: Any other SEC school
  • Most-Impressive Game-Day Feat: 50 slabs of ribs
  • Signature Dish: My Spicy Rum Chicken Wings are always a big hit.


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