Skillet Lasagna with Butternut Squash — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, January 19th, 2015

Skillet Lasagna with Butternut SquashGone are the days when making lasagna was a weekend-only activity that required hours of preparation. With the help of a stove-to-oven pan, Food Network Magazine’s quick-fix Skillet Lasagna with Butternut Squash (pictured above) is a go-to dinner you can reach for on even the busiest of weeknights.

The secret to making this recipe in a hurry is taking advantage of welcome timesavers. Start with your favorite jar of marinara and a package of frozen butternut squash, and opt for no-boil noodles (flat-shaped lasagna noodles that become tender by absorbing sauce) to save yourself from cooking traditional pasta separately. Once you’ve made a creamy cheesy mixture studded with the squash, it all comes down to layering: first the sauce, then the noodles and finally the cheeses before repeating the process. Top with a final blanket of gooey mozzarella and a sprinkle of nutty Parmesan for added decadence before baking. It’s a good idea to let the skillet rest for a few minutes before serving; this will help prevent the cheeses from oozing out when you cut into the lasagna.

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When a Side Dish Saves the Day — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, January 19th, 2015

So often in the Cutthroat Kitchen arena, chefs split their focus between the challenge dish and a side dish or two to round out their offerings for the judge, only to find out later that the sides did more harm than good, perhaps detracting from the primary dish or suffering a flaw that the judge cannot ignore. But on tonight’s all-new episode, it turns out that the side dish saved the day for one competitor and ultimately clinched his win.

It was up to judge Simon Majumdar to decide which of two chefs’ granola bars was worthy of the prize, and while Chef Julio’s plate indeed featured a bar, Simon noted of the taste during the After-Show, “It wasn’t the best granola.” That prestige was awarded to Chef John’s dish, as Simon explained, “John’s was really good granola, but it wasn’t a bar.” Therein lies the problem. “The fact that both of them had real problems — one didn’t have a bar and one didn’t have great granola — meant I had to judge the dish as a whole,” Simon said, “and [Chef Julio’s] pineapple dish was really great.” While such a judgment doesn’t happen regularly on Cutthroat, Alton Brown told Simon, “In that case, it was the side item that sealed the victory.”

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One-on-One with the Latest Recruit Eliminated from the Red Team — Worst Cooks in America

by in Shows, January 19th, 2015

Michael MuldoonThis season on Worst Cooks in America, 14 new helpless home cooks have joined the ranks to be mentored by chefs Tyler Florence and Anne Burrell. Split into the Blue and Red teams, they’ll face new cooking challenges every week, honing their skills until just two finalists (one from each team) remain to face off in one final cook-off, the winner of which will walk away with $25,000 in cash, along with bragging rights for his or her mentor. Unfortunately, however, every week the two lowest-scoring recruits will be kicked out of Boot Camp, losing the chance to win the prize money, but leaving with new skills they’ve learned from their mentors.

FN Dish has the exclusive interviews with the eliminated recruits from the Red Team and the Blue Team.

Find out who on the Red Team went home

One-on-One with the Latest Recruit Eliminated from the Blue Team — Worst Cooks in America

by in Shows, January 19th, 2015

Mike KennedyThis season on Worst Cooks in America, 14 new helpless home cooks have joined the ranks to be mentored by chefs Tyler Florence and Anne Burrell. Split into the Blue and Red teams, they’ll face new cooking challenges every week, honing their skills until just two finalists (one from each team) remain to face off in one final cook-off, the winner of which will walk away with $25,000 in cash, along with bragging rights for his or her mentor. Unfortunately, however, every week the two lowest-scoring recruits will be kicked out of Boot Camp, losing the chance to win the prize money, but leaving with new skills they’ve learned from their mentors.

FN Dish has the exclusive interviews with the eliminated recruits from the Red Team and the Blue Team.

Find out who on the Blue Team went home

Speak Up, Fans: Where Do You Eat the Best Breakfast Ever?

by in Shows, January 19th, 2015

Best. Breakfast. Ever.While barbecue and pizza may conjure images of a specific plate — smoky, saucy meats or a crust with sauce on it — the rules of breakfast are far more lenient. After all, a morning meal can range from the sweetest sugar-rolled doughnuts and creamiest cups of oatmeal to the heartiest platters of steak and eggs and towering piles of fluffy flapjacks.

Your favorite Food Network chefs and stars are set to reveal their picks for the ultimate morning indulgence on tonight’s brand-new episode of Best. Breakfast. Ever. (at 10|9c), but before you tune in, FN Dish wants to hear about your breakfast picks. What are some of your local breakfast hot spots, and what do you order? Are you a fan of the diner on the corner for its classic egg scramble and bacon, a bagel shop specializing in fresh lox or a fancier eatery with gourmet French toast? Leave a comment below, tell us on Food Network’s Facebook page or Food Network’s Google+ page, or tweet @FoodNetwork using #BestBreakfastEver to tell us your local restaurant picks and share your version of the ultimate breakfast. FN Dish will round up your answers and reveal your top selections on Thursday.

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Chia Seed Pudding — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, January 18th, 2015

Chia Seed PuddingWhen it comes to your morning meal, there’s no reason to settle for boring — even when you’re in a hurry. In this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week recipe, Giada De Laurentiis lets chia seeds work their magic overnight in thickening maple-laced Greek yogurt before helping you wake up to a ready-to-eat treat full of texture. Just top the pudding with fruit and sliced almonds for added crunch for a quick-fix dish.

For more lightened-up meal ideas, check out Food Network’s Let’s Get Healthy board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Chia Seed Pudding (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine

2015 Calendars That Look Good Enough to Eat

by in Product Reviews, January 18th, 2015

Lou PaperIf you haven’t already, it’s time to get a 2015 calendar in your hands (or on your wall)! Of course, most of us have one on our computer or phone, but these good-enough-to-eat options (like the one pictured above from Lou Paper) will will convince you that the paper variety still reigns supreme.

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There’s a Plastic-Eating Fungus Among Us

by in News, January 17th, 2015

Plastic-Eating MushroomsThat classic scene from the movie The Graduate was all too true. There is a great future in plastics. The problem, though, is that future may be devastatingly long – in fact, no one really knows quite how long conventional plastics take to break down. It could be hundreds upon hundreds of years, and even when they break down, they never really go away completely. And that’s not great for our planet.

Now, science may have an answer. One word: mushrooms.

Austrian designers Katharina Unger and Julia Kaisinger, co-founders of the collaborative design firm LIVIN Studio, have teamed up with researchers at Utrecht University to devise a fungi food product they hope is capable of solving two global problems at once: too much plastic waste and too little food.

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How to Eat Better on a Budget

by in Recipes, January 17th, 2015

Penne with Roasted Tomatoes, Garlic and White BeansOn this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts kicked off their Waste Not … episode with a look at new ways to stretch your dinner dollar and take advantage of your freezer and pantry for budget-friendly fixings. While your New Year’s resolution for healthier eating in 2015 may have led you to the grocery store for seemingly necessary specialty ingredients, believe it or not, you don’t have to spend a lot to prepare lighter recipes. It all comes down to stocking your kitchen with good-to-have staples like a mix of whole grains and canned beans. Check out Food Network’s 14 Musts for a Budget Pantry, then read on below for some of Food Network’s favorite healthy dinners that won’t break the bank.

Made with only a handful of ingredients, this recipe for easy-to-prepare Penne with Roasted Tomatoes, Garlic and White Beans (pictured above) suggests roasting tomatoes and garlic until soft and sweet, and letting them shine in place of a traditional tomato sauce. For extra heft, Ellie Krieger adds cannellini beans to the pasta, plus sprinkles of fresh basil and nutty Parmesan cheese for flavor.

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Warm Up with Winter-Ready Oatmeal for Breakfast

by in Recipes, January 17th, 2015

With a heartiness that’ll keep you going long past breakfast and a warmth that’ll keep you cozy on the coldest of winter mornings, oatmeal is perfect for your first meal of the day. These healthful whole-grains can be cooked on the stove, sauteed in a skillet, baked in the oven and even prepared overnight in the fridge. So no matter how you cook your oats and whichever way you serve them, this versatile grain is sure to make it into your weekly rotation.

Steel-Cut Oatmeal (pictured above)
Alton sautes steel-cut oats (or pinhead oats, as they’re referred to in England) in butter so the natural sugar in the oats will caramelize and develop a toasty taste. Keep an eye on the pan, though, so it doesn’t burn.

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