Easy Pasta with No-Cook Sauce — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, August 25th, 2014

Mediterranean Summer Pasta with Salsa CrudaAside from boiling a pot of water for noodles, pasta doesn’t necessarily require the heat of the stove or oven, as sauces can come together with little more than some stirring or blending. And during the dog days of summer like these, that’s indeed welcome news, on account of the scorching temperatures outside. While pesto may be the most-common no-cook sauce, tomato sauces, too, can be served raw, especially at this time of year when tomatoes are at their ripest — and sweetest.

Melissa d’Arabian lets seasonal tomatoes shine in her recipe for light and fresh Mediterranean Summer Pasta with Salsa Cruda (pictured above). The star of this fuss-free supper is a simple yet bold combination of seeded tomatoes, briny olives, salty capers and fragrant mint; after incorporating these go-to ingredients with bright orange zest and olive oil, let their flavors marry for a bit, then top them with just-cooked noodles. The heat of the pasta will gently cook the salsa-like tomato mixture to create a warm, satisfying plate, finished with grated Parmesan for added flavor.

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In Search of the Healthiest Dish on the Menu? Help Is On the Way.

by , August 25th, 2014

chalkboard menu

You’re feeling hungry and hankering for some comfort food, so you slip into your local diner and scan the menu, looking for healthy options. You know they’re in there, hidden among the burgers and fries, shakes and floats, waffles and three-egg omelets loaded with cheese. A spinach salad? A fresh fruit plate? A low-cal veggie soup, not too heavy on the sodium? The trick is to find them.

Health-aware food marketing experts want to help, basically by using the things restaurants do to manipulate diners into ordering high-profit menu items for the greater good — or at least to boost our collective good health. In a study recently published in the International Journal of Hospitality Management, Cornell University professor Brian Wansink (the man credited with the 100-calorie snack pack) and co-author Katie Love found that people eating in restaurants tend to order descriptively named menu items more frequently than those with bland names. Renaming “seafood fillet” something like “Succulent Italian Seafood Fillet,” for example, boosted sales 28 percent.

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New App Foodmento Just May be the Holy Grail of Restaurant-based Time Wasting

by , August 25th, 2014

As you can probably tell by looking at all of the downward facing heads at any restaurant, food-based apps are kind of a big deal. You can snap pics of food and put it on your Instagram. You can offer scathing reviews of your not-so-favorite eateries on Yelp. You can let the whole world know you are about to consume a double cheeseburger on Foursquare. Until now, there has not been a single app that let you do all of these things. Introducing Foodmento.

Foodmento, a name which is going for ‘nostalgia’ but ends up just hitting ‘mint,’ is your all-in-one food-based smartphone app. First of all, it is dish based, meaning that you use the application to search for a particular dish. You can then find the best of said dish in your area. You can also check out the best rated dishes at a particular restaurant, which thankfully will take the guess work out of that whole deciding thing (overrated.) There is location-based social networking, just like Foursquare. There is also a heavy social component, with the app letting you know if a friend has tried out the same stuff you have. It’s pretty cool, even though society may have already hit critical mass with this stuff.

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6 Breakfast Picnic Ideas

by in Family, August 25th, 2014

6 Breakfast Picnic IdeasWhat better way to savor the last days of sunshine than packing up a breakfast picnic? There are two ways to do it: Go old school with a blanket in the yard, or head to the patio. Either way, just pack a thermos of coffee, another full of milk (doing double duty as a beverage for the kids, plus creamer for the java), then bring your breakfast out on a tray — it’s easier to handle than a basket. Now take your pick: We’ve got muffins, eggs and more, each of them to go.

1. Baked Scrambled Eggs (pictured above): You don’t need a bug-shaped pan to pull this off, but it’s sure fun. Beaten eggs plus milk and the toppings of your choice (cheese, ham, tomatoes and more) go into the oven for a sturdy egg dish that’s just as good at room (or outdoor) temperature as it is hot.

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“The Cute Factor” — Testing the Sabotages

by in Shows, August 24th, 2014

The mini kitchen is no stranger to Cutthroat Kitchen, as chefs have been asked to work in kid-size constraints challenge after challenge. But on tonight’s all-new episode, Alton Brown unveiled a different tiny tool capable of doling out similar great trials during the Round 3 chocolate cake test: the toy stand mixer. Would this kid-friendly apparatus consisting of little more than a short, hand-powered wooden whisk and a shallow plastic bowl be enough to serve as a chef’s sole means of mixing? After all, to make chocolate cake, a competitor would need to be able to incorporate both wet and dry ingredients.

Before Alton auctioned off this doozy of a sabotage, Cutthroat Kitchen’s culinary team tested on the mixer to make sure it was indeed possible to execute within the contest, and Chelsea, a food stylist on set, wondered, “Does the cute factor, you think, count as extra points for this challenge?”

Click the play button on the video above to see the test in action, and learn how the mixer earned an “approved” rating.

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Exclusive Interview with the Latest Food Truck Team to Exit the Race

by in Shows, August 24th, 2014

The Great Food Truck RaceOn this week’s episode of The Great Food Truck Race, the teams found themselves headed to Tucson, Ariz. Some hoped the change in location from California to the Southwest would be a seamless transition that wouldn’t require much modification in menu or strategy. A Truck Stop challenge of selling a local favorite, and later a Speed Bump that relocated the food trucks to a local festival, both tested the teams’ marketing abilities. But the challenges were easier for some more than for others. One team in particular wasn’t able to get out of the rut they had put themselves into in the previous city. FN Dish has the exclusive exit interview with the latest team cut from the race.

Find Out Which Team Was Eliminated

The World’s Best Combination: Cheesecake Brownies

by in Community, August 24th, 2014

Cheesecake Brownies - Most Popular Pin of the WeekYou would never guess that these marbled brownies combine two decadent treats, lightened up. The cheesecake layer is made with reduced-fat cream cheese while low-fat buttermilk keeps the brownie base moist and fudgy. You’ll quickly see why these brownies are this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week.

For more dessert recipe inspiration, visit Food Network’s Let’s Bake board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Cheesecake Brownies

6 Dill-icious Summer Dishes

by in Recipes, August 23rd, 2014

Dill doesn’t get included in nearly as many recipes as, say, thyme or basil. Sure, it’s a unique flavor, and a little dash can seriously alter the taste of a dish, but there are plenty of dishes that can benefit from a bit of the summery herb. It’s great for adding something extra to dressings, sauces, seafood and even tea. Besides its subtle sweet flavor, it also boasts some unexpected health benefits: It helps soothe the digestive system and has a calming effect that can be used as a sleep remedy. So try out some of these recipes and showcase your new favorite herb this summer.

Creamy Dijon-Dill Potato Salad
No summer gathering is complete without a good, creamy potato salad. This elevated version makes use of fresh dill along with Dijon mustard and lemon juice, giving it a sweet, salty, tangy taste that is the perfect complement to some smoky barbecue. Remember, for the best flavor and texture, it’s recommended that you make it a few hours in advance and keep it at room temperature.
Potato Salad

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Savor the Season: Your Guide to Canning Tomatoes

by in Recipes, August 23rd, 2014

Savor the Season: Your Guide to Canning TomatoesJust like the long days and high temperatures that are quintessential parts of summer, the time to enjoy the season’s fresh produce is limited. To preserve summer flavors as long as possible, many resort to pickling, jamming and jarring various fruits and vegetables, but when it comes to tomatoes, canning is the way to go. With just a few everyday tools, you can keep the juicy, fresh taste of sweet summer tomatoes alive all winter long, thanks to an easy-to-master canning process. Read on below to get the dish on canning tomatoes from Sean Timberlake, the founder of a DIY food site, then check out the details in his one-stop guide.

Tomato Picking: There are countless kinds of tomatoes on the market, but Sean recommends plum and San Marzano. “You’ll want to choose a tomato variety with ample meat … and you’ll want them just ripe.”

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