An Inside Look at Damaris’ DIY Southern Wedding

by in Food Network Magazine, September 13th, 2015

Damaris Phillips' Wedding

Whether you’re planning your own wedding, are a hopeless romantic or love a good party (with great food), Damaris Phillips’ wedding pictures are a must-see. Food Network Magazine got the invite and talked with the beautiful bride about all the details of the big day. To see photos and learn more about the now-newlyweds’ inspiration for the quirky and unconventional reception, read the full article from the September issue below.

The challenge sounds like the final test on a cooking-show competition: Throw a wedding reception for 235 people in the middle of a city street with a different place setting for each guest, an all-vegetarian menu and a 10-cake dessert buffet baked exclusively by the bride and groom. Oh, and the forecast calls for thunderstorms. This is not, however, a cooking-show challenge; it’s Damaris Phillips’ real-life wedding day — and she’s pulling it all off without a hitch.

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How to Make Milk Bar’s Famous Birthday Cake

by in How-to, Restaurants, September 13th, 2015

Milk Bar was founded in 2008 by James Beard Outstanding Pastry Chef award-winner Christina Tosi; you may have heard of some of the bakery’s more popular items, like Cereal Milk ice cream, Compost Cookies and Crack Pie. With five locations in New York, one in Toronto and another opening in Washington, D.C., later this year, Milk Bar is becoming its own dessert empire. But it’s the eatery’s Birthday Cake that has won my heart and my stomach. It’s a modern take on the classic Funfetti cake, and it makes an appearance every year when it’s my birthday (and also when it’s not). The key to the moist cake layers in this towering treat? A soak of whole milk and clear vanilla extract. That’s right: It’s like a tres leches cake gone birthday bonkers, in the best way possible. We stopped by Milk Bar’s test kitchen location in Brooklyn to see how the masterpiece comes together.

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Q&A with Competitor Chris Soules — Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition

by in Shows, September 12th, 2015

Chris SoulesSeason 7 of Worst Cooks in America is a little bit more star-studded, as seven recruits from Tinseltown are joining the ranks of the culinarily challenged. Like in previous seasons, the recruits will be split into teams, but this time their coaches will be Anne Burrell and Rachael Ray. For one of these stars, getting through all six weeks of trying challenges will mean $50,000 for his or her charity and bragging rights for the star’s mentor.

It’s not every single guy’s or girl’s luck to appear on TV’s The Bachelor or The Bachelorette, but for Chris Soules, it has been twice. With humble beginnings growing up on a farm in Iowa, Chris was unknowingly entered into the reality-romance show by his sisters. Considering his degree from Iowa State University in agronomy and agriculture, you would never have imagined this farmer would end up in Hollywood, but that’s what happened. Chris also competed on the hit show Dancing with the Stars, landing in fifth place. Now back home on the farm and working in the family business, Chris is ready for the next chapter in his life.

Although Chris didn’t find lasting love on TV, he’s ready to learn some cooking skills so he can reel in and keep the next catch he finds. Watch the premiere of Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition on Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 9|8c.

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5 School Lunches You Can Make in 5 Minutes

by in Family, Recipes, September 12th, 2015

DIY Cucumber SandwichesSome parents meticulously pack their kids’ lunches the night before, ensuring a smooth start the next day. I am not one of them. My husband takes our kids to school every morning at 7:30 a.m. And every morning at 7:15 a.m. I start making lunch. “OK, we’re in the No Request Zone,” I’ll announce to all four small fry who are still eating breakfast, not yet even starting to wonder where their shoes are. But with a few handy strategies for banging out healthy lunches in a hurry, we rarely have a lunch-related disaster. (Getting all the kids out the door and buckled into their car seats, however, is another matter. See: shoes.) That’s thanks to this list of reliably quick lunch ideas:

DIY Cucumber Sandwiches: Think Lunchables with a fresh twist. Chop up a cucumber and put it in the lunchbox. Then set a small pile of turkey, ham and/or cheese next to it, and let the kids put together their own sandwiches at lunchtime.

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The Easiest Pasta Ever (Really)

by in Recipes, Shows, September 12th, 2015

Spaghetti Aglio e OlioWhile Spaghetti Aglio e Olio may not get any points for ease in pronunciation, it indeed takes the cake for simplest-ever pasta dinner: 15 minutes, five ingredients. Done.

Geoffrey Zakarian introduced the recipe for this go-to meal on this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen. From start to finish, the sauce — made with just olive oil, sliced garlic, red pepper flakes and fresh parsley — came together in the time it takes the pasta to cook, meaning it’s the ultimate in I-need-food-on-the-table-like-right-now cooking. The secret to GZ’s sauce is twofold: adding some of the pasta water to the oil and garlic, and, secondly, cooking the pasta only part of the way before tossing it in the pan with that watery-oil mixture. The noodles will finish cooking the sauce, and the sauce thickens naturally on its own, thanks to the starch in the water.

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Chefs’ Picks: Farmers Market Finds

by in Restaurants, September 12th, 2015

Pepper

Chefs’ Picks tracks down what the pros are eating and cooking from coast to coast.

As the school year kicks up, it’s also prime time for farmers market shopping across the country. Patrons have their pick of the bounty of late-summer fruit, like luscious stone fruit, and also the early fall favorites: apples, squash and a plethora of peppers. But where to begin? Market-loving chefs from coast to coast share with us their favorite current produce at the market, as well as their easy-to-replicate home recipes for it.

Local Peppers (Chef Annie Pettry, Decca, Louisville, KY) Read more

Q&A with Competitor Jenni “JWoww” Farley — Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition

by in Shows, September 11th, 2015

Jenni FarleySeason 7 of Worst Cooks in America is a little bit more star-studded, as seven recruits from Tinseltown are joining the ranks of the culinarily challenged. Like in previous seasons, the recruits will be split into teams, but this time their coaches will be Anne Burrell and Rachael Ray. For one of these stars, getting through all six weeks of trying challenges will mean $50,000 for his or her charity and bragging rights for the star’s mentor.

Jersey Shore will forever be considered a phenomenon, if only for making JWoww and Snooki household names. Although she now goes by Jenni, JWoww hit the reality television scene on MTV’s wildly successful show, which later spun off into Snooki and JWoww, featuring the adventures of the two best friends from Jersey. Since then Jenni’s appeared on Marriage Boot Camp. Her first book, The Rules According to JWoww, was released in 2012.

Get to know more about Jenni and her love for food, and why she signed up to be whipped into culinary shape in Boot Camp. Watch the premiere of Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition on Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 9|8c.

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Which Is Better: Eggnog or Hot Chocolate?

by in Food Network Magazine, Holidays, Polls, September 11th, 2015

Food Network Magazine needs your help for the December issue. It’s never too early to start daydreaming about the holidays. And channeling your holiday cheer prematurely might even make you feel better on a hot and sticky late-summer day.

The editors want to know which side you’re on for traditional holiday drinks. Vote in the poll below and tell FN Dish whether you prefer to sip hot cocoa or eggnog.

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6 Tips for Hosting Your Child’s Birthday Party Without Losing Your Mind

by in Entertaining, Family, September 11th, 2015

6 Tips for Hosting Your Child's Birthday Party Without Losing Your MindWe have four young kids and the oldest turned 6 this year. That means we’ve hosted 14 birthday parties — so far. With many, many more to go, we stick to these guidelines for fun parties without frazzled parents.

1. Invite a small number of kids. No one has fun at a party that feels like a mob. It’s loud. It’s chaotic. See above, it’s no fun. Remember that old rule about inviting as many friends as you are old? It’s perfect. Five, six or eight kids plus a parent each makes for plenty of revelers.

2. Create a simple theme or activity. Host a tea party. Or have everyone come in costume. This year our 4-year-old had a tea party where everyone wore costumes. Put together a scavenger hunt with hidden clues, a karaoke sing-along or outdoor Olympics based on simple games (like relay races, a water balloon shot put and so on). Pretend it’s 1988 and channel your mother; she put a Barbie doll in the middle of your cake and called it a day.

And by all means, put the birthday child to work. That same 6-year-old LOVED creating signs for her party, directing people where to go and telling people what to put where.

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A Tale of Two Tortillas, Thick and Thin

by in News, September 11th, 2015

A Tale of Two Tortillas, Thick and ThinThose of us who have only ever thought of flour tortillas as ultra-skinny discs, with little to nothing in the way of puff, have apparently been missing out on a whole other variety: thick, bready flour tortillas, a New Mexico regional specialty.

Author Tracie McMillan writes, on NPR’s The Salt, about the moment when, during a visit to a New Mexico restaurant, she first encountered and instantly flipped for these “thick, charmingly floppy tortillas, dotted with browned bubbles and closer in thickness to pancakes than the wan, flaccid discs” she — and the rest of us — are used to tossing in our carts at the local grocery.

Why, she wonders, had the “magic” thick tortillas — rendered puffy thanks to baking powder, perfect for soaking up regional stews, yet nearly impossible to find on the East Coast — never caught on, while the thin ones became ubiquitous? McMillan uncovers a few reasons:

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