by Guest Blogger in Food Network Chef, Shows, January 23rd, 2013
by Maria Russo in Shows, January 22nd, 2013
Every Wednesday, Justin Warner, winner of Food Network Star, Season 8, is remixing the Chopped Champion baskets as seen in the episode the night before in pure Justin Warner style: edgy, intense, passionate and full of wit. If you’ve ever watched an episode and found yourself yelling at the TV that you would have made this or that instead, then these are the posts for you.
by Justin Warner
I’ll be frank: sometimes I don’t know everything. Sometimes I call it a steamer and you’ll call it a sloppy Joe. Sometimes I call it a clam and you’ll call it a steamer. Sometimes you don’t know what the heck is in the basket and you just have to taste it and roll along. Even the most complex things in the food world are made of simple things. It’s when you don’t know the simple things that you should be worried about what’s in the basket!
Appetizer basket: Fruit cake, shad roe sack, vodka and Tokyo scallions
Fruit cake — fahruit cake — fahhhruuit cake. Let’s face it: it’s sweetened bread. Salt and lemon will shut it up. It’s pre-made bread though, right? With caviar? And vodka? And onion? This is a gift basket if you ask me.
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, January 22nd, 2013
In an all-new season of Chopped Champions, 16 chefs, each with a previous Chopped win under his or her belt, are returning to the kitchen to face off for a second time in the ultimate multicourse cook-off. Although they’re no strangers to mystery baskets, these chefs are under more pressure than ever, as they’re competing not just for Chopped glory but also a spot in the finale where they can ultimately claim a $50,000 prize and the coveted title of Grand Champion.
Each week, four chefs will take their places in the kitchen and battle it out in the hopes of outlasting the chopping block once again. While three will crumble beneath the demands of Champions cooking, one will prove his or her culinary chops for a second time. Check in with FN Dish every Tuesday night after the episode to hear from the latest winner.
SPOILER ALERT: Find out who won
by FN Dish Editor in Shows, January 21st, 2013
On Sunday’s episode of Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off, the challenge had the celebrity contestants at Mel’s Drive-In on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. The goal was to reinvent three classic diner sandwiches: the tuna melt, the cheeseburger and the club sandwich. Unfortunately, not everyone lived up to the challenge. The diners found Dean’s and Chilli’s dishes from Team Guy their least favorite. In the end, Chilli was eliminated.
When you think about it, a diner sandwich makes a pretty darn good lunch, especially when you want to satisfy a craving for greasy spoon cuisine. Everyone has his or her favorite sandwich — you may even order the same one every time you visit a diner. FN Dish wants to know, What’s your favorite diner sandwich? Vote in the poll after the jump.
More From Rachael vs. Guy:
Episode 3 Recap (Video)
Watch the Full Episode (Video)
Episode 3 Highlights (Photos)
VOTE for your favorite diner sandwich
by Simon Majumdar in Drinks, Shows, January 21st, 2013
Three rounds, three different baskets and 12 out-of-this-world ingredients. Whether it’s Chopped Champions, All-Stars or regular-season episodes, that’s a lot of combinations to come up with.
So we’re asking this question: What would be included in your ultimate Chopped basket? Not something you’d want to receive, but something you’d give to a fellow competitor. Would there be two proteins? All sweets? Would you include one or two ingredients they’ve probably never heard of? It can be argued that the simplest ingredients like eggs, chicken, pasta and rice are sometimes the hardest.
Tell us what you’d choose in the comments below.
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, January 20th, 2013
As a very proud Englishman, I know that it is tea rather than blood that flows through my veins and that it’s a very rare day indeed when I don’t pop the kettle on the stove for a nice strong “cuppa” to fortify me through a long day of work.
Although I was disappointed not to be asked to judge this particular battle in Kitchen Stadium, I was just as keen as everyone else to see what magic Iron Chef Forgione and his challenger, Chef Kittichai could come up with to give inspiration on new ways to use one of my own kitchen essentials.
Here are 10 interesting facts that you might not know about tea:
1. The word tea comes from the Chinese T’e, which was the word in the Amoy dialect for the plant from which tea leaves came. In Mandarin, the word was ch’a, which is where the words char and chai are derived from.
by Simon Majumdar in Shows, January 19th, 2013
Every Sunday night, FN Dish gives you the exclusive exit interview with the latest castoff from Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off, the competition show that features celebrities cooking their way through challenges for a chance to win the title of Cook-Off Champion and $50,000 for their chosen charity. This season will have the celebrities facing real-life situations — far from the glamour of the red carpet — and will test more than just their cooking skills.
On tonight’s episode, the six remaining celebrities found themselves at Mel’s Drive-In. The challenge this time would be to create a full diner experience for the customers. One person from each team would be required to attend the front of the house while the remaining two cooked in the back. The goal was to test the celebrities’ adaptability in reinventing three classic diner dishes: the tuna melt, cheeseburger and club sandwich. Unfortunately, Team Guy was not allowed to choose who would make which sandwich, putting them at a disadvantage that landed them in the bottom again.
Find out which celebrity was eliminated
by Maria Russo in Shows, January 19th, 2013
Fans of Iron Chef America have probably noticed that there have been a couple of significant changes in the way that winners are selected in Kitchen Stadium recently.
No longer do the chefs get the benefit of a full hour of cooking before they are asked to present their first dish to the judges — the first dish is now expected in just 20 minutes. And to add to their discomfort, at some point during the 60-minute contest, the Chairman will also wheel out a small trolley to reveal a “Culinary Curveball” to be incorporated into the final presentation. Both of these new challenges carry with them significant points and how the chef performs can put them at a major advantage or disadvantage for the rest of the battle.
I can tell you that these changes have taken a bit of getting used to, both for the chefs and the judges. Now that I have taken part in a number of competitions under these new regulations, however, I can hold my hand up and say that I am a fan of the new format.
Get to know the new rules
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, January 18th, 2013
So often on Chopped we see chef contestants open their mystery baskets to find such odd, uncommon and downright scary ingredients — pre-cooked pig snout, pickled beef tongue or grasshoppers, anyone? — that it can seem nearly impossible for home cooks to put them to work in everyday meals. On other episodes, however, the ingredients are far less intimidating yet not quite familiar. That’s where we come in. Each week during the brand-new season of Chopped Champions, FN Dish will break down the whats, hows and whens of an approachable, family-friendly ingredient and share deliciously simple recipes for using it, so that you can show off your best culinary chops at home. Following last Tuesday’s round-1 competition, the focus is now on plantains, which made an appearance in the dessert round alongside spiral ham, water chestnuts and spiced rum.
A close cousin of the yellow banana, green plantains are similar in look and shape to the classic fruit, but instead of being peeled back and enjoyed raw at the breakfast table, they’re most often cooked so that they lose their signature tough, firm bite. Plantains aren’t quite as sweet as bananas, so they can be featured in savory dishes as well as sweet desserts, like they were on Champions, and they hold their shape well even when exposed to the high heat of the deep-fryer or grill. The key to successfully working with plantains at home is letting them take their time cooking. On Tuesday’s Chopped episode, Chef Sean Scotese explained, “Green plantains need a lot of love. They need to be fried or boiled until they’re soft and crispy.” Try your hand at plantains this weekend with easy recipes from Food Network Magazine below.
by FN Dish Editor in Shows, January 18th, 2013
This season of Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off takes the celebrity contestants to different places every challenge. In the first episode, the celebrities had it easy in the theater. The second episode had them far out of their element on a farm. But the third episode finds the contestants in a venue that’s pretty familiar for Guy.
In the above sneak-peek photo it appears Rachael and Guy are discussing the dishes in front of them, when all of a sudden they’re distracted by something. Whatever it is, it’s enough to draw a look from Guy and crack up Rachael. What did someone say to Rachael and Guy? What did Guy say in response? Will the teams be able to handle the challenge or will they give up?
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Whether they’re smiling, cringing, panicked about diminishing time on the clock or just stumped by a use of ingredient or technique, all nine of the Chopped judges have very telling faces.
Browse through a gallery of some of the best Chopped judge face-moments captured throughout the seasons.