Try a Tangy Cilantro-and-Mayonnaise Coating on Broiled Fish

by in Recipes, Shows, June 25th, 2014

Cilantro Crusted Arctic Char with Green BeansFor this week’s Chopped Dinner Challenge, the chefs of Food Network Kitchen chose to feature the basket ingredient Arctic char. A pink-fleshed fish similar in taste to salmon or trout, Arctic char works well in a variety of cooking methods. In this Cilantro-Crusted Arctic Char with Green Beans recipe, however, the fish is broiled with a coating of cilantro and mayonnaise, which shows mayonnaise isn’t just for baking chicken. Instead of a typical breadcrumb coating, chopped cilantro stems (an often discarded portion of the herb) help create a flavorful outer crust. With this recipe, dinner is just 20 minutes away.

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Alton Brown’s Best Bets for a Summer Bar

by in Drinks, Food Network Chef, June 25th, 2014

Alton's Best Bets for a Summer BarAlton Brown may be spending most of his time on the set of Food Network Star or Cutthroat Kitchen, but there’s always time for a cocktail. He gave us the low-down on his favorite drink for summer, told us which trends he is totally over and answered how you can best stock your at-home bar.

What cocktail trends are you over?
Alton Brown: I’m over anything that involves a cheese-stuffed olive because I don’t like cheese in my booze.

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How Much Would You Pay for That Dinner Reservation?

by in News, June 25th, 2014

How Much Would You Pay for That Dinner Reservation?It would probably be an overstatement to call the usual way of reserving a table at a hot restaurant at a prime time on a Saturday night an entirely democratic process. In theory, snagging a seat is simply a matter of dialing up the restaurant or booking online through a free website like OpenTable — equally accessible to all. In fact, it probably doesn’t hurt to know someone or be someone or, if conventional wisdom holds, be the kind of person who’s willing to slip a little cash someone’s way.

Now a new batch of fee-based apps is aiming to change the way tables at desirable restaurants are reserved. Whether these new apps, which claim to make hard-to-get reservations available to anyone willing to open their wallets, make the process more democratic is open to debate. Certainly they’ll make it more expensive.

Whether restaurants and diners will embrace the idea of paying for something that has always been free, if sometimes inaccessible, remains to be seen. In New York City, the market most of these new apps initially aims to serve, people are already used to paying a fee to book tickets to events — even to movies.

“But for restaurateurs — even those who demand $6 for a baked potato to accompany a $48 steak — charging patrons for reservations feels like touching the third rail,” Julia Moskin noted in a recent New York Times story about the new apps.

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How a Toothpick Can Save Lunchtime and 7 Other Secrets

by in Family, June 25th, 2014

How a Toothpick Can Save Lunchtime and 7 Other SecretsWhen it comes to gimmicks for getting kids interested in their food, I say, “Yes, please.” I have no shame when it comes to fun presentation, cute shapes or miniature anything, as long as it’s no more difficult than making a plain old version. With four kids at home — the oldest just turned 5 — these are my favorite tricks of the meal-making trade.

1. Sandwich Sushi: We call these “roly-polies” in our house, and the method couldn’t be simpler. Take a piece of bread and use a rolling pin to flatten it out (making the surface bigger too), then fill with your usual toppings like PB&J, turkey or whatever your kids like. Roll up and slice into 3 to 4 pieces.

2. Bunny and Bear Hard-Boiled Egg Molds: Our kids love eggs, but they actually cheer when I spend an extra 20 seconds creating bunnies or bears with these easy-to-use egg molds. Just press a peeled egg into the mold, close and wait a few seconds, then pop ‘em out.

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Tickets on Sale for the 2014 New York City Wine & Food Festival

by in Events, June 24th, 2014

2014 New York City Wine & Food FestivalTickets are on sale for the 2014 New York City Wine & Food Festival, an annual celebration of all things dining in New York City. For four days exclusively in October, (Oct. 16-19) food fans will get a chance to mingle with their favorite television stars, like Bobby Flay, Rachael Ray, the casts from The Kitchen and Chopped, and many more. The best part? Several events cost less than $100 this year. Get your tickets now.

Here are the events our editors will be covering throughout the festival — join us.

Thursday, Oct. 16

Cooking Channel presents Chicken Coupe hosted by Whoopi Goldberg
Ronzoni’s La Sagra Slices Read more

10 Fascinating Facts About Farms and Food

by in News, June 24th, 2014

10 Fascinating Facts About Farms and FoodFarming is as big a part of the American identity as baseball, hot dogs and apple pie, but it has nevertheless been a shrinking part of the American way of life for decades. It takes only a drive past malls and multiplexes rapidly rising on land formerly dedicated to agriculture to appreciate that fact firsthand.

In its “40 Maps That Explain Food in America,” Vox.com uses a collection of charts, graphs and maps to illustrate how food in the United States is produced and consumed. In addition to exploring hot topics like the rise in obesity, the spread of McDonald’s, and the correlation between Waffle Houses and hurricanes, the feature reveals a lot about the trajectory of farming in the United States

Here are 10 interesting facts about U.S. farming — its history and current status — to be gleaned from Vox.com’s “40 Maps …”:

1. Between 1840 and 2000, the percentage of the American labor force engaged in agriculture-related work plummeted from a robust 70 percent to a measly 2 percent.

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New Twists on Classic Iced Tea and Lemonade Recipes

by in Drinks, Recipes, June 24th, 2014

sts on Classic Iced Tea and Lemonade RecipesChange up your iced tea and lemonade routine this summer with a few cocktails and some kid-friendly drinks that’ll have you skipping the mix from now on.

1. Mule-ade
A traditional Moscow Mule calls for vodka mixed with lime, sugar and ginger beer. This version infuses even more ginger flavor by simmering ginger grounds with maple syrup (you can also make your own brown sugar syrup) before stirring in lemon juice and vodka. Top with club soda and garnish with a piece of fresh ginger.

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