FN Dish caught up with Bobby, Giada, Guy, Jeff, Justin and the entire cast of Chopped judges at the 2013 New York City Wine & Food Festival
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to relive the biggest events and most memorable moments featuring your favorite Food Network stars.
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While the sabotages dealt to chefs on Cutthroat Kitchen
may be downright devious and may cause the competitors to rethink their culinary approaches, the dishes they’re tasked to cook are, in fact, straightforward. Common plates like tacos, cupcakes, fried chicken and burritos have made appearances in the past, and all Alton asks of the contestants is that they create these meals for the judge. It sounds easy enough — until he reveals unknown curve balls, like mandatory ingredients and inferior cooking utensils, of course. It’s these challenging sabotages that cause — or, perhaps, force — the chefs to abandon all aspects of simplicity and ultimately reinvent the dishes as next-level versions.
Although this week’s battle indeed featured its share of sabotages, judge Antonia Lofaso told Alton Brown on the host’s After-Showthat the chefs’ culinary offerings could have been stronger, if only they had not tried to make the dishes complicated and too unlike the originals. In Round 2, one chef was given leftover fried rice to feature in jambalaya, and rather than merely steam it to outfit it with the proper texture, he or she turned it into rice patties, but the rice wasn’t apparent. “You would have been starting with a product that you can have control over,” Antonia told Alton. “[The chef] could have just resuscitated it, but instead [the competitor] ground it into a paste,” Alton added. “I would have simply just used it.”
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Tacos are having a moment in New York City right now, and it was on full display at Bobby Flay‘s fourth annual Tacos & Tequila party. This can’t-miss event has become a Saturday night staple of the New York City Wine & Food Festival. This year, nearly 30 of Bobby’s NYC chef “brothers and sisters” served up their tastiest tacos, and there were even stations from a few out-of-town friends.
Pier 92 was packed with taco-loving fans — including Food Network stars like Giada De Laurentiis, Chopped judge Aarón Sánchez and newly minted Star winner Damaris Phillips — eager to sample the offerings and sip Olmeca Altos margaritas.
FN Dish asked Bobby what makes up his perfect taco. “The perfect taco should be spicy, sweet, sour and crispy,” the event host told us, as he manned his Bar Americain station and chatted with hundreds of fans. Bobby’s own taco certainly met his criteria: He served a pork, pineapple and pomegranate taco wrapped in a crisp radicchio leaf for a refreshing flavor-packed bite.
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Who knew that Guy Fieri was such a Broadway enthusiast? Turns out that the host of Guy’s Grocery Games (Sundays 8pm/7c) is a theatergoer after all, and on Saturday he celebrated his love of the live stage by hosting a party inspired by one of his favorite shows, Rock of Ages, during the New York City Wine & Food Festival.
Standing tall atop the second-floor bar at his restaurant, Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar, Guy told the packed crowd that he and his family have seen the musical and enjoy its ’80-style jams, so it was only fitting for him to invite the cast to belt out some of their signature tunes right then and there, as the show’s theater is located just steps away from his Times Square eatery. It didn’t take long for the scene soon to turn into a dance party when Guy manned the microphone on stage and added his own rock-and-roll twist to the cast’s performance.
If you’re looking to lighten up dinner, the search is over. This week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week is actually many pins — more than 75 of Food Network’s most-requested healthy dinner recipes. They include mouth-watering tacos, scampi, burgers and classic Italian dishes like spaghetti and meatballs. Pictured above is an eye-catching plate of Oven-Baked Salmon.
This salmon dinner couldn’t be simpler. Season the fish with salt and pepper, and then pop it in the oven to bake to perfection in 15 minutes. An easy-to-make parsley and almond salsa goes on top.
For more everyday recipe inspiration, visit Food Network’s Let’s Get Healthy board on Pinterest.
Get the recipes: Healthy Weeknight Dinners
When it comes to sandwiches, no one knows or respects the intricacies of this timeless favorite quite like Food Network’s own Sandwich King, Jeff Mauro. At Saturday’s Soup’er Sandwich event during the 2013 New York City Wine & Food Festival, Jeff gathered more than two dozen of his fellow sandwich enthusiasts at Manhattan’s Hudson Hotel, and together they celebrated all things meaty, cheesy and saucy between bread, as well as the ultimate accompaniment to sandwiches: soup.
Not one to stick with ordinary PB&Js or the everyday ham-and-cheese, Jeff offered the crowd of guests a dinnerlike sandwich, The Sloppy Greek (pictured left). FN Dish caught up with the host at his station, and he broke down each component of his signature sandwich: “Ground lamb, slowly seared and cooked with red wine, a bunch of spices [and] garlic, homemade feta tzatziki sauce with a little mint in there [and] cucumber-banana pepper relish served on a Martin’s potato roll.” What resulted was a bold, flavorful “Greek-inspired spin on a sloppy joe,” according to Jeff. “It’s delicious,” he added, and his fans surely agreed, given that he ran out of bread not long into the afternoon.
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These one-dish wonders are a perfect meal any night of the week. But loads of creamy canned soup, butter and cheese tend to sabotage most casseroles. Here’s how to make the comfort-food favorites with healthier ingredients.
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Hundreds gathered at this year’s New York City Wine & Food Festival‘s Blue Moon Burger Bash on Pier 92 to taste 27 different iterations of burgers, ranging from the classic to the over-the-top. But for the first time in the Burger Bash’s history, two chefs shared the most coveted prize of People’s Choice: Guy Fieri and Josh Capon. Judges’ Favorite went to Paul Denamiel of Le Rivage for his French Onion Soup Burger. Guy’s burger was a multi-layered comfort food smorgasbord that Guy himself claimed contained 22 ingredients. It drew a never-ending line of patrons who ultimately voted it as their top pick.
FN Dish was at the event to take in all the sights, sounds and aromas. Watch the video above to see what went down and read on for more details on Guy’s and Josh’s winning burgers and ones from Bobby Flay and Marc Murphy.
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Vegan recipes may seem daunting, but a few simple ingredient swaps are all it takes to make a delectable dessert without any dairy or eggs.
Vegan Vanilla Bean Cupcakes
¾ cup maple syrup
¼ cup canola oil
¼ cup unsweetened apple...
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For kids — and kids at heart — Halloween may mean just one thing: candy. But beyond all things chocolate-covered and caramel-filled there lies an entire array of savory eats and drinks to celebrate this spooky holiday. Whether you’re hosting a fright night bash with friends or simply entertaining fellow moms and dads before trick-or-treating begins, opt for Halloween-inspired bites to set the theme. Check out a few of Food Network’s favorite party-ready recipes below, then tell FN Dish in the comments what you’re serving at your Halloween party.
Just as the party’s starting, put out a platter of Ghostinis with Bloody Murder Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade (pictured above) from Food Network Kitchens. Just like traditional crostini, these toasts are served with a blend of sun-dried tomatoes, kalamata olives and capers, but the bread is cut into ghosts to achieve an eerie effect. This fuss-free appetizer can be eaten with your hands, so it guarantees a relaxed, mingle-friendly atmosphere all night long.
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