by Lauren Miyashiro in Holidays, March 11th, 2015
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, March 11th, 2015
Don’t limit beer to drinking — especially on St. Patrick’s Day. A splash here and there adds complex flavor to stews and braises, and it tastes especially delicious in cheesy foods. You may have heard about adding vodka or vinegar to your pie dough, but what about beer? Just a touch helps yield flaky results in Food Network Magazine’s recipe for beef pot pies with cheddar crust (pictured above). Beer is also a valuable ingredient in desserts. Stout and chocolate are a popular pairing: The dark brew’s rich coffee notes taste heavenly with cocoa-heavy treats. And darker ales tend to have a toasted caramel taste.
Not a beer drinker? No problem. Cooking with beer doesn’t mean your meal will taste like a hoppy pint. Think of beer as a flavor enhancer. It adds a “wow” factor that most people won’t be able to identify — they’ll just be begging you for the recipe. So crack open a bottle and get cooking! These recipes are perfect for St. Patrick’s Day, or for any night when the craving for comfort food strikes.
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, March 11th, 2015
What Food Network’s new show All-Star Academy, Sundays 9|8c, does is transform eager home cooks into competitive machines. But all of these cooks had to start somewhere — in their home kitchens, where they honed their culinary skills on their friends and family before they were ready for the competition show. Seeing these competitors made us wonder: What makes a good home cook? What makes him or her ripe for competition? So we went straight to the mentors to find out.
Alex Guarnaschelli, Bobby Flay, Curtis Stone and Michael Symon reveal the traits a great home cook must have to put out impressive dishes. And these are skills that can easily translate to the competitive arena once learned and perfected through practice. The 10 individuals who came into the competition were ready to take on the challenge of All-Star Academy. Are you ready?
by Amy Reiter in News, March 11th, 2015
With the largest prize ever in Chopped history on the line, 16 culinary stars enter the hallowed kitchen for a fourth season of Chopped All-Stars, premiering Tuesday, April 28 at 10|9c. In each episode of the five-part series, four chefs go head to head in competition. Each one hopes to cook his or her way through to the end without getting chopped. The four winners then advance to the finale, where big bucks are at stake. One will walk away the All-Stars champion with $75,000 for his or her charity.
The caliber of chefs this season includes those who are very familiar to competition, having appeared in previous Chopped and Iron Chef America battles. Many are stepping into the Chopped kitchen for the first time. Find out who’ll be competing.
by Maria Russo in Entertaining, Food Network Chef, March 11th, 2015
As winter lingers — and lingers — way past the moment when many of us are ready for spring, you may find yourself turning to your favorite comfort foods for consolation. But you may not have tried turning to them all at once.
That’s where The Meatloaf Bakery, a Chicago purveyor of savory cupcake-shaped meatloaves, comes in. Among its many curious meatloaf offerings (a spicy-chicken-wing-inspired meatloaf and a salmon-based loaf topped with wasabi mashed potatoes and lemon-dill yogurt sauce, just to name two), you’ll find a genius pasta-meatloaf mash-up appropriately called the Loaf-a-Roma. The base combines beef and Italian sausage meatloaf with melted mozzarella cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, basil and a touch of red wine, and it’s topped with a tangle of angel hair pasta and marinara sauce.
by Amy Reiter in News, March 10th, 2015
When it comes to hosting a party at home, there are two groups of people: those who panic and those who prepare. If the mere thought of cooking for a crowd sends you into cold sweats, chances are you’re part of the first group, but it doesn’t have to be that way. All it takes to be prepared for your next big bash is having a plan for the meal, and for that, Rachael Ray likes the bar approach.
During a live demo with her husband at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival last month, Rachael dished on what she calls “a cheap and cheerful way to entertain.” She set up a bar of fixings for her chicken fajitas, like lettuce, radishes, cheese and crema, and explained that when re-creating the meal at home, each guest could be responsible for bringing just one portion of the spread. “Everybody can participate,” she said. That means that instead of all the pressures of the party — the shopping, the cooking, the plating (and the panic) — being put on you, the host, your friends can help out by contributing to the meal. And with everyone creating their own versions of their ultimate meal, like fajitas or tacos or pizza, you can be sure that each guest will get exactly what he or she wants.
by Foodlets in Family, March 10th, 2015
Fore! Jack Nicklaus is taking a big swing at a new venture: He’s launching his own line of premium ice cream.
The legendary professional golfer, now 75, has teamed up with Minnesota-based frozen food maker The Schwan Food Company to bring pints of Jack Nicklaus-branded ice cream to supermarket chains including Winn Dixie, Bi-Lo and Kroger. The ice cream, which sells for $2 and features the golfer’s smiling visage and a cute little gold bear on the label (a reference to Nicklaus’ nickname), will be available in seven flavors: Warm Spiced Butter Pecan, Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl, Salted Caramel Toffee, Strawberry Lemonade, Triple Chocolate, Coffee and Donuts, and Homemade Vanilla.
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, March 10th, 2015
If asparagus isn’t on your kids’ list of approved foods (it could be!), try a bridge ingredient to help them warm up to those in-season stalks. That means, serve asparagus with another favorite food or flavor, or prepare it using a technique you know they like. Find out how to pair asparagus with bacon, lemon, Parmesan cheese and more.
Ina Garten’s Roasted Asparagus (pictured above): Roasted vegetables are always a hit with my four kids, so it’s a no-brainer that we’d try Ina’s fan-favorite recipe for asparagus.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, March 10th, 2015
When it comes to the judges of Chopped, Tuesdays 10|9c, they definitely have their own distinctive personalities, and it’s most evident just by the way they deliver the bad news to unsuspecting chefs at the chopping block. If you’ve ever found yourself siding with one judge over the other — especially when there’s a heated disagreement pertaining to the correct use of a mystery basket ingredient — you’re not alone. You’ve probably thought to yourself you could easily hang with one of them. Well, now’s your chance to find out with whom you share the most in common.
Take the Quiz Now
by Allison Milam in Recipes, March 9th, 2015
Consider making that phrase — “when all else fails, make pasta” — your new life mantra. Easy to prepare, inexpensive and a staple in most people’s pantries, pasta is the ultimate oh-man-I-need-dinner-on-the-table-like-right-now meal, and it’s equally adored by kids and adults alike. Perhaps best of all, some of the most-classic sauces require only two or three ingredients, and many don’t even need to be cooked — only warmed with the heat of the pasta — so dinner can be on the table in as little time as it takes to boil a pot of water. Read on below for six pasta staples you’ll want to make again and again.
Make Ina Garten’s Marinara Sauce once, then commit the recipe to memory, because this workhorse of a sauce will save dinnertime over and over again. Simply prepared in one pan but boasting a rich, full flavor, thanks to a splash of red wine and fresh chopped herbs, this sauce will shine atop your family’s favorite noodle, ravioli or tortellini.
As the old saying goes, good things come to those who wait. Though fresh, hot meals are put on a pedestal, full-fledged meals beyond wine and cheese get better with age too. In fact, when braised meats, sumptuous stews and hearty casseroles are left to sit in the fridge and cool down for hours or even days, a little magic happens. Flavors meld together as individual ingredients mingle and achieve a more well-rounded flavor.
Before you scarf down an entire dish, slow your roll. These hearty recipes prove that some things are best taken as leftovers, whether you zap them in the microwave or sneak a bite out of the fridge cold.