Crispy Business: How to Make Parmesan Crisps

by in Food Network Magazine, March 3rd, 2013

Parmesan crisps

Parmesan crisps (frico in Italian) look fancy, but they’re actually just cheese and crackers for the lazy. You get the crunch of a cracker plus big cheese flavor in one — and they’re super easy to make. Toss 1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan with 1 tablespoon flour, then flavor with 1 to 2 teaspoons minced herbs, spices and/or citrus zest. Form the cheese mixture into 12 mounds (2 tablespoons each) and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment and coated with cooking spray; then flatten into 4-inch rounds. Bake at 375 degrees F until golden, 8 to 10 minutes. While hot, gently remove them from the sheet with a thin spatula and let cool completely.

Clockwise from top left: Lemon zest, Pepper, Curry-coriander, Smoked paprika and Scallion

(Photograph by Kang Kim)

Best 5 French Onion Soup Recipes

by in Recipes, March 2nd, 2013

French Onion Soup Topped French Bread Pizzas and Salad With Dijon VinaigretteWinter comfort food at its finest, French onion soup is a hearty, complete meal in bowl that needs no adornments other than a generous blanket of rich, creamy cheese and perhaps a slice of crusty bread. The key to making any French onion soup is properly cooking the onions. Instead of quickly sauteing them until browned, it’s important to cook them over low heat for a long period of time until they’re soft, boasting a deliciously sweet taste and deep golden, caramelized color. Check out Food Network’s top-five French onion soup recipes below to find out how your favorite chefs and stars put their signature spins on this crave-worthy seasonal soup.

5. Rachael’s French Onion Soup-Topped French Bread Pizzas and Salad With Dijon Vinaigrette (pictured above) — Rachael takes the classic ingredients of French onion soup out of a bowl and turns them into an eat-with-your-hands meal by piling sherry-spiked onions and a duo of decadent cheeses atop French bread and then baking.

4. Anne’s French Onion Soup — “Caramelized onions are very sweet and require a fair amount of salt,” Anne says of her simple-to-make soup, which is why she strongly recommends tasting the broth before serving.

Get the top three recipes

Reset Your Resolution

by , March 2nd, 2013

new years resolution
We’re more than a few weeks into the New Year — have you kept up with your resolution?  If not, no need to feel guilty and sabotage future health goals. Unattainable health goals only lead to a sense of failure which in turn becomes lac...

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DIY Dinners: Ingredient Bars to Please the Whole Family

by in Family, Recipes, March 2nd, 2013

All American Beef TacosPicture this: It’s about 5:00 in the evening and you ask your family what they want for dinner. Your spouse responds with one dish — but it’s not what you’re craving — and what your kids answer with isn’t appealing to the grownups in the house. Sound familiar?

It can be downright impossible to please everyone at the dinner table with a single meal, but that doesn’t mean you have to cook multiple recipes to guarantee everyone enjoys what they’re eating. The trick is to pick a single base dish and let each person customize it to his or her own tastes with their favorite ingredients. Family-friendly picks like pizza, tacos and baked potatoes are blank-slate recipes that can be prepped to a certain point, then finished by each person with preferred additions depending on if they are a vegetarian or diehard carnivore, or have a picky palate or simple distaste for certain foods. To serve these make-it-yourself dinners, set up an ingredient bar with toppings, condiments and more to which your family can help themselves; they’ll be able to choose how much of each component they want, plus the interactive element of mealtime will go a long way in getting little ones excited about their food.

For a traditional taco preparation, stick with Alton’s All-American Beef Taco (pictured above). He sautes ground beef with Taco Potion #19 — his signature blend of spices — and serves it in freshly fried tortilla shells before filling each with optional add-ons like crumbled panela cheese, pickled jalapeno, cool lettuce and cilantro.

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Ice Cream Meltdowns — Worst Cooks in America Caption It

by in Shows, March 1st, 2013

Chefs Anne Burrell and Bobby FlayJust when the recruits are starting to adjust to the stresses of Worst Cooks in America Boot Camp and the expectations that come with each Skill Drill and Main Dish Challenge, Chefs Anne Burrell and Bobby Flay are ready to throw a twist into their list of already tricky demands. On Sunday, for the first time, the mentors will leave the kitchen during the Skill Drill while the recruits prep homemade gelato, which will be subject to a blind tasting. This means that the competitors will be wholly alone in their efforts this week, as they won’t have the security of nearby coaches or the opportunity to defend their dishes as they’re tasted.

Given the sneak-peek image above from Sunday’s all-new episode, it seems as though both Chefs Anne and Bobby are left stunned — and not in a good way — with what chilly treats their team members have scooped for them. Here, both mentors look with confusion and perhaps pure horror at the icy concoction before them, but since it’s a blind tasting, they can’t tell whose recruit is responsible for this dessert meltdown. Do you think the chefs will be able to guess based on flavor and presentation who prepared this plate, and if so, who’s most likely to have crafted this unsuccessful confection?

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Crispy Zucchini and Potato Pancakes — The Weekender

by in Holidays, Recipes, March 1st, 2013

Crispy Zucchini and Potato Pancakes - The WeekenderWhen I was in high school, I went through a period where nothing I ate sat right with me. My parents took me to our family doctor, trying to figure out what was the matter. I was tested for celiac disease, IBS, Crohn’s and other illnesses that can sometimes cause digestive distress and they all came back negative. It wasn’t until a family friend who was also a naturopathic doctor suggested I take a break from eating wheat-based foods that things began to improve.

This was back in the mid-’90s, before everyone was eating wheat-free and gluten-free. The available rice pasta was terrible and the spelt bread sold at our local co-op was dry and crumbly. I ate a lot of my mom’s homemade granola and gave up a lot of the things I most liked to eat for a time.

Happily, I found that it was enough for me to take occasional breaks from wheat to keep my belly happy and so every couple months, I’d take a week or two off from bread, pasta, cookies and anything else with wheat in the ingredient list.

Over this past weekend, I realized that it was time for another such wheat-free period. I did a little meal planning and made a shopping list of things that would ease the shift (though it’s so much easier to do these days than it was nearly 20 years ago).

Before you start cooking, read these tips