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5 Ways to Eat Chocolate for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on Valentine’s Day

by in Holidays, Recipes, February 12th, 2015

 

Valentine’s Day is on a Saturday this year — which means if you haven’t made a dinner reservation by now, you’re pretty much screwed. But fret not: A homemade candlelit meal is always more intimate than the prix-fixe menus and forced romance served at neighborhood restaurants. And since it’s a weekend day, you’ll have plenty of time to prep, whether it be for breakfast in bed, a lingering brunch or a multicourse dinner extravaganza.

Chocolate shares equal billing on Valentine’s Day with red roses, but most often rolled into truffles or tucked into assorted boxes of candy. But why wait till dessert (or, err, whatever time of day you happen to open your gifted sweets) to indulge in the heavenly ingredient? Incorporate chocolate into your celebratory meal — breakfast, lunch or dinner — to infuse your dishes with either sweetness or bitterness, complexity and subtle spice.

Kick-start your day with endorphin-boosting Chocolate Waffles (shown above). Mixing chocolate syrup into the waffle batter ensures consistent cocoa flavor without compromising the texture of the breakfast treats. Top them with additional chocolate syrup and red berries to give them that Valentine’s vibe. Read more

Melt Hearts with Handmade Chocolate Sweets — Comfort Food Feast

by in Holidays, Recipes, February 12th, 2015

Chocolate-Covered StrawberriesWhether you’ve got yourself a sweetie or you’re going for a more “all my single ladies” approach, these chocolatey sweets are just what St. Valentine called for. Instead of swinging by the drugstore for a sorry box of chocolates, give your valentine handmade chocolate treats that are a sure-fire way to melt hearts.

It may be the go-to move, but there is something to be said for biting into plump, juicy Chocolate-Covered Strawberries (pictured above). Not only are these fruity treats romantic through and through, they’re also completely effortless to make. Plus, rolling each melted chocolate-dipped strawberry in crushed pretzel sticks or almonds makes for a crunchy complement that proves that opposites attract.

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Layered Is the New Chopped: Try a Layered Salad for Every Season

by in In Season, Recipes, February 12th, 2015

These stacked salads from Food Network Kitchen prove dinnerworthy with layers of greens, seasonal vegetables, protein and crunch. Get inspired by the season (we’re currently obsessed with winter’s tasty beet-and-Brussels combo), or make a layered take on the classic wedge that’s a crowd-pleaser anytime of year. Read more

Cream Cheese Rules the Dairy Aisle, and Here’s Why

by in Recipes, February 11th, 2015

cream cheese frostingOf all of the treasures in the dairy aisle, the best one is hard to pick. Eggs are pretty great because they’re essential to breakfast sandwiches, egg salad and cake, and you can eat them for pretty much any meal, but they lose a few points for versatility because you have to cook them. Cheddar cheese is awesome because it’s good melted on just about anything and makes a killer sandwich, but you can’t really turn it into a dessert. Yogurt wins for being healthy (usually), but that’s really all yogurt has going for it.

But cream cheese? Cream cheese is the dairy aisle MVP because it’s so versatile. What else can you smear on a bagel, whip into frosting, swirl into mashed potatoes or turn into a hot, cheesy dip? Cream cheese is the best, and here are 11 reasons why:

Cream Cheese Frosting (above) is the best part of any carrot cake, hummingbird cake or red velvet cake, but try it on your favorite banana cake, chocolate cake or coconut cupcakes, or serve it with strawberries.

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9 Best Ways to Simmer, Sandwich and Serve Meatballs (That Don’t Involve Spaghetti)

by in Recipes, February 10th, 2015

9 Best Ways to Simmer, Sandwich and Serve Meatballs (That Don't Involve Spaghetti)Sure, spaghetti and meatballs go together like bread and butter, but these beefy rounds don’t have to be confined to Italian cooking — or even to beef. The beauty of the meatball is that (almost) anything goes: Pork, chicken, turkey and vegetables? They’re are all go-to fillings, too, and when it comes to flavors and serving options, you’re limited only by creativity, from Asian-inspired and barbecue sauce toppings to gooey cheese fillings and taco stuffings. Read on below for the best-ever takes on meatball madness beyond the traditional pasta pairing.

When Pepperoni Won’t Cut It: Rachael Ray crumbles ground sirloin into large chunks that resemble meatballs in her quick-fix recipe for Mega Meatball Pizza. Since she starts with store-bought pizza dough, this family-friendly pie, blanketed in stretchy mozzarella cheese, can be on the table in just over 30 minutes.

When You Don’t Want to Choose: Who says you can’t have it all? Food Network Magazine’s Chipotle Chicken Meatball Tacos prove that you can indeed enjoy the best of a culinary mash-up. Here meatballs take on a Mexican flavor after simmering in a hearty sauce of smoky chipotle peppers and jalapeno.

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Fixing Up Dessert Imposters — Cook Along with Kids Baking Championship

by in Recipes, Shows, February 10th, 2015

Cheeseburger CakeNot everything is as it seems. That’s what the kids learned last night on Kids Baking Championship, when they found out they’d be baking fake-out foods, like burgers, tacos and pizza that are all actually desserts masquerading as savory foods. Most of the kids were excited by the prospects, but their baking assignments were drawn at random, leaving a few competitors with dishes they weren’t too happy with. In a twist of fate, the one kid who hated her assigned dish won, while the one who was happiest about his was sent packing. It just came down to execution and a sidekick dish that didn’t do the entire package justice.

These fake-out foods may look more difficult to make than they really are; broken down into steps, they become a fun and easy project to make on the weekend. We’ve compiled some of our favorite deceptively sweet treats that will leave you and your friends doing a second take. Let this roundup of recipes get your ideas flowing!

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Calling All Chocoholics: 5 Decadent Chocolate Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

by in Holidays, Recipes, February 9th, 2015

Warm Chocolate Cakes with BerriesThere are chocolate lovers — and then there are chocoholics, a term reserved for only the most-diehard chocolate fanatics, those who dream about sleeping on a bed of fluffy chocolate frosting and swimming in a vat of chocolate fondue. If you consider yourself a member of this super-sweet club, you’re in luck: FN Dish is here with five of the most-over-the-top chocolatey recipes that you’re sure to swoon over this Valentine’s Day.

Hot-from-the-oven chocolate cake on the outside with a pool of rich, creamy melted chocolate in the center: That’s the scene taking place when you make Giada De Laurentiis’ Warm Chocolate Cakes with Berries (pictured above). The beauty of Giada’s fuss-free cakes is that you can prepare them in the morning, then come back to bake them right before you’re ready to eat them, so you’re guaranteed a deliciously warm dessert. Follow Giada’s lead and add just a pinch of espresso powder to the batter; it will enhance the flavor of the chocolate without adding a coffee taste.

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Bean, Kale and Egg Stew — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, February 9th, 2015

Bean, Kale and Egg StewWhile traditional stew may conjure images of a meaty supper that requires hours of slow simmering to cook, it’s indeed possible to pull off a vegetarian version ideal for Meatless Monday — and in a hurry, too.

The key to making a satisfying and meat-free stew is replacing the beef with an equally hearty ingredient, and for our Food Network Kitchen, that’s plenty of kidney beans in its good-for-you recipe for Bean, Kale and Egg Stew (pictured above). Ready to eat in only 35 minutes, this easy dinner boasts layer upon layer of flavor, starting with a base of sweet sauteed red onions, protein-packed beans and a warming broth spiked with soy sauce. Once the kale is tender, it takes just a few minutes to thicken up the stew, which is best topped with a runny sunny-side up egg and served with a side of broiled cheesy bread for easy dunking. Do you prefer a bit of spice in your stew? If so, don’t forget the hot sauce for DIY heat.

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7 Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore Canned Tuna

by in Recipes, February 8th, 2015

Tuna CasseroleThose cans of tuna on the grocery store shelves — the ones that cost about $2 each? Don’t ignore them. You might want to because you don’t feel like another boring tuna salad sandwich, but don’t do it. Don’t ignore the cans. Think of them as inexpensive tins of protein, meal starters you can turn into dozens of inventive meals, shelf-stable little wonders you can stock up on and use later.

Here’s why you should fill your cart with canned tuna. OK, maybe not fill it, but stock up when it’s on sale and make tuna a permanent line item on your grocery list.

Because You Miss Mom’s Tuna Casserole (above)
Mom made it because it was inexpensive, easy and comforting. Shouldn’t you do the same? Mom might have used canned soup to thicken hers, but this version is made with a from-scratch creamy sauce, making it lighter and more delicious than the one you remember, but just as nostalgic and comforting. It’s also made with whole-wheat fettuccine and two (!) vegetables, broccoli and peas, so you can really feel good about it.

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Swoon Over Steak Dinner: 4 Meaty Meals to Make on Valentine’s Day

by in Holidays, Recipes, February 7th, 2015

Steak PizzaiolaValentine’s Day may be all about hearts, roses and chocolate, but when it comes to indulging in a fancy dinner on Feb. 14, look to a juicy, meaty steak to treat your sweetie. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, Katie Lee prepared the ultimate in beefy decadence: filet mignon. She opted for a filet cut of beef to guarantee soft, buttery meat, then she doctored up the dish with sides of golden-brown potatoes and simple asparagus studded with pine nuts. Read on below to find three other ways to serve a simple yet stunning steak supper for your valentine.

For a lighter alternative to the classic steak dinner, try Food Network Magazine’s Steak Pizzaiola (pictured above), ready to eat in only 35 minutes. This healthy recipe boasts seared sirloin steak simmered in a bold tomato sauce with bell peppers and onions, plus a pinch of red pepper flakes to offer welcome spice.

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