Taste Test: Healthier Crackers

by in Uncategorized, June 21st, 2014

crackers
Have you  browsed the cracker aisle lately? In addition to stocking the classic varieties, shelves are overflowing with versions made from whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. But are these options really what they’re cracked up to be?

The ...

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Grilled Apple Cider Chicken — Down-Home Comfort

by in Recipes, June 20th, 2014

I actually put together my very first grill myself. It took all day and a good deal of patience and persistence. It was a pretty scary moment when I twisted the control on the tank and clicked the ignition. It all worked out and I didn’t blow myself to kingdom come. I love to grill throughout the year, but in the summer it’s just practical to keep the heat out of the kitchen. Burgers and brats are brilliant, and steaks and seafood are stupendous, but my absolute favorite is cheap and cheerful chicken. Read more

My Paris Kitchen — Off the Shelf

by in Books, June 20th, 2014

My Paris Kitchen CookbookThe delightful thing about David Lebovitz’s writing is his ability to make even the most-intimidating foreign cuisine seem approachable and familiar. French cuisine can be overwhelming, especially for home cooks. It’s renowned for its heritage of precision, its delicate balance of flavors and its unwavering high standards for taste and presentation. That’s great for a major holiday dinner, but who has time for fussy food in the middle of the week?

My Paris Kitchen took me by surprise with how unpretentious and inviting its recipes are. Crack open the book to any page and it’s not hard to imagine David taking you calmly by the elbow and strolling you down a Parisian street and into his favorite cheese shop, where you discover how fascinating (and delicious!) seasonal cheeses can be. His style of writing is relaxed, conversational and friendly. You’re just hanging out with a friend, chatting about adding ice to wine, the virtues of a good mortar and pestle, and the miracle that is a perfectly ripe cherry tomato.

The other little something special that sets My Paris Kitchen apart is the fact that some recipes are basic and other recipes will gently guide you outside your culinary comfort zone. David’s inviting writing is almost misleading, in that you’ll be halfway through a recipe you once thought to be way beyond your skill level before you realize how simple French cooking can be if you have the right teacher. And that’s the mark of an exceptional cookbook: It doesn’t just give you better recipes; it helps you become a better cook.

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NFL Players Show Off Big Appetites — for Practical Jokes

by in News, June 20th, 2014

NFL Players Show Off Big AppetitesNFL players have been known to live large and splash out some serious cash on food and drink, especially thanks to a questionable hazing tradition wherein veteran players stick team newbies with whopping dinner tabs.

For example, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant recently told Fox Sports he was forced to fork over $55,000 for dinner with teammates at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse in Texas during his rookie year. Despite the fact that Dez, a first-round pick in 2010, had signed a five-year deal worth $11.8 million, the pressure to pay for his fellow players’ excesses rubbed him the wrong way.

Earlier this month, Philadelphia Eagles offensive tackle Lane Johnson, who was a first-round draft pick in 2013, tweeted a dinner bill from Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House in Philadelphia with the caption “Rookie dinner.” The total damage indicated on that check was a modest-only-by-comparison $17,747 — much of it apparently on Remy Martin Louis XIII cognac ($4,525) and more than a few extremely pricey bottles of Cabernet (one bottle of 2005 Screaming Eagle Cabernet cost $3,495 alone), as well as steaks, seafood and sides. (The “auto gratuity” was calculated at $472.20 — but perhaps the players left some extra cash?)

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What to Watch: Travel with Guy to Find the Best Grilled Meats and Learn Steakhouse Secrets with Bobby

by in Shows, June 20th, 2014

Barbecue Addiction: Bobby's BasicsIt’s grilling season on Food Network, and your favorite hosts are getting ready for a summer of outdoor fun.

On Saturday, check out new episodes of Farmhouse Rules and The Kitchen. Nancy’s bringing in the food for bingo night at her community rec center, and the hosts of The Kitchen are cooking up some delicious rotisserie chicken. Next, Guy goes on a hunt to find the greatest grilled meats in the country on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

On Sunday, Bobby unveils his grilling secrets on a new series called Barbecue Addiction: Bobby’s Basics and Guy invites his pal Jimmy John to create a flavorful fried fish sandwich on Guy’s Big Bite. Next, tune in to three hours of all-new competition with Guy’s Grocery Games, Food Network Star and Cutthroat Kitchen.

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Is Alton’s Mango-Cutting Technique Better Than Yours?

by in Food Network Chef, Recipes, June 19th, 2014

In a YouTube video this week, Alton takes on the fruit that is seemingly impossible to cut — the mango. In a comedic parody (including a massive amount of faux blood), Alton walks food fans through two bad ways to cut this fruit, then he describes the best tactic: Remove all the peel from the mango except for two circles in the center of each cheek. Holding this skin for support, you can then slice the mango easily on each side of the seed. The skin will provide a tough grip so you don’t drop the mango and cut yourself.

Alton is of course no stranger to unique mango recipes. He gives mangoes an Indian twist in this Mango Chutney recipe, and he puts them in a tangy Fruit Salad with Vanilla Dressing. He stuffs a curried mango filling into his Pocket Pies, and he dries mangoes in this Dried Fruit recipe for a sweet and healthy snack. Below are five more ways you can incorporate this delectable fruit in your favorite recipes.

1. Give your favorite dip a fruity twist with this Mango Salsa recipe.
Mango Salsa

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The Judges and Host of Chopped Look Back on 20 Seasons of Memories

by in Shows, June 19th, 2014

Chopped judgesFor 20 seasons of Chopped, viewers have seen numerous winning chefs walk away with $10,000, a few grand tournament champions leave with $50,000 and many chefs walk the hallway of disappointment after being chopped on national television. And the Chopped judges have witnessed all these happenings in front of and behind the cameras. Now they share their most-memorable moments from the series, which goes into its 20th season this month.

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A Neon Tie-Dye Surprise Cake That Will Knock ‘Em Dead

by in News, June 19th, 2014

A Neon Tie-Dye Surprise Cake That Will Knock 'Em DeadPeace, love, understanding — and cake? If you’re baking for a Jerry Garcia fan, a preschooler who adores arts and crafts, or just someone who likes colorful surprises, you may find inspiration in this super-cool psychedelic, rainbow tie-dye cake with an unexpected twist, created for Tablespoon.com by Hungry Happenings blogger Beth Jackson Klosterboer. (Beth credits this tie-dye Peace Cake by Sandra Denneler, of Handmade Charlotte, as inspiration.)

The list of ingredients is pretty simple: four boxes of pound cake mix (it’s less susceptible to air bubbles than regular cake mix), eggs, butter, milk, neon food coloring, 28 ounces of fondant in whatever colors appeal to you, and store-bought frosting. And you’ll need two 6-inch x 6-inch x 2-inch baking pans, and a fair number of disposable pastry or Ziploc bags. (For the full tutorial, click here.)

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