Alex Eats: Herbs

by in How-to, August 9th, 2011

herbs
alex guarnaschelliEvery week, Alex Guarnaschelli, host of Alex’s Day Off, shares with readers what she’s eating — whether it’s from the farmers’ market or fresh off the boat, she’ll have you craving everything from comfort food to seasonal produce.

“Never put parsley on green beans,” one of my mentors whispered ominously to me one night in his kitchen. A young cook at the time, I dutifully heeded his advice. Years later, I was absent-mindedly sprinkling chopped chives on some green beans when I realized it was actually chopped parsley. A chill crept up my spine. Parsley with green beans. Help! I looked around to see if anyone was watching. The coast was clear. I tasted it. Delicious. It occurred to me I had never even asked why parsley and green beans don’t make a good match. The truth is, whatever you like is all that matters.

Read her suggestions for basil, dill, sage and tarragon »

Recipe of the Day: French Toast Panini With Grilled Bananas

by in Recipes, August 9th, 2011

french toast panini with grilled bananas
Instead of topping your French toast with fruit, try sandwiching caramelized bananas between two pieces of bread to create a portable breakfast treat that has a hint of orange and is topped with real maple syrup.

Get the recipe: French Toast Panini With Grilled Bananas

Browse more of Food Network’s breakfast recipes.

Humidity and Cookies — Fix My Dish

by in How-to, August 8th, 2011

chocolate chip cookies
Twice a month, we’re giving readers a chance to ask Food Network Kitchens’ advice about an issue they’re having with a dish. They can’t reformulate a recipe for you, but they’re happy to help improve it. For example, this week’s question is directly related to the intense summer heat we’ve been having.

Question: “With all this humidity, my freshly-baked cookies got stale. How can I crisp them up again?” — Debby D.

Answer: Moisture may be good for your plants or your skin, but not for your cookies. Summer, though welcomed for the sun and fun, also brings humidity that makes your cookies limp — not so fun. Keep those cookies crisp by storing them in an airtight container. Some people toss a piece of bread in with the cookies to help absorb any excess moisture. You could also re-crisp them by baking on a wire rack in a 300 degree F oven for a few minutes.

Have a question for the Kitchens? Leave a comment below and they’ll answer a select number of them in the coming weeks.

Taco Night — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, August 8th, 2011

tofu tacos
Take a break from meat tacos and try swapping it for crunchy cubes of tofu. Pile it into whole-wheat tortillas alongside Greek yogurt sauce and crunchy, tangy slaw for a weeknight meal that screams summer.

Pair these tacos with a tomato salad that has a hidden crunch — cheese crisps — to complete this family-friendly Meatless Monday meal.

Get the recipe: Tofu Tacos

Meatless Monday, an international movement, encourages people everywhere to cut meat one day a week for personal and planetary health. Browse more Meatless Monday recipes.

Recipe of the Day: Grilled Mac and Cheese With Pulled Pork

by in Recipes, August 8th, 2011

grilled mac and cheese with pulled pork
Three ultimate comfort foods all in one sandwich: grilled cheese, macaroni and cheese and pulled pork come together to form a cheesy pork sandwich that will be a special treat for you and your family. Don’t worry about making the pulled pork from scratch — if you have some leftover from a recent barbecue, feel free to use that or store-bought.

Get the recipe: Grilled Mac and Cheese With Pulled Pork

Browse more of Food Network’s comfort food recipes.

Pie Thickeners — FN Kitchens

by in How-to, August 5th, 2011

peach pie cherry pie recipe
There’s no doubt that apple and pumpkin are among some of the most popular pie varieties, but nothing beats a fresh berry or peach pie, especially when the fruits are at their peak. Now, imagine cleaning handfuls of fresh cherries, drying them off and taking time to prepare the filling mixture. You’ve rolled out the crust, baked off the pie and let it cool. The vanilla ice cream is ready and you cut the first piece, only to see your filling run around the pie plate, creating a mushy crust. How can you keep your pie from running and what pie thickeners are appropriate? We asked Food Network Kitchens for their expertise.

The “juiciness” that happens when fruit cooks in a pie is most copious with fruits like berries and peaches, fruits that have a lot of juice, especially during the summer. We use thickeners to add body to these juices so that they can stay inside the pie — or at least close to it — so when we cut into it, the crust stays crisp and the whole thing is more fun to eat.

Find out how to make the perfect pie filling »

Off the Beaten Aisle: Rainbow Chard

by in Recipes, August 5th, 2011

rainbow chard quiche
It’s a beet, minus the root.

Which doesn’t make sense. Except it does. Because it’s chard, one of a growing number of common yet often overlooked greens lurking at your grocer.

Chard — sometimes called Swiss chard or rainbow chard (when it sports brightly colored stalks) — really is a relative of the beet.

But unlike traditional beets — which put their energy into producing finger-staining roots, chard instead produces big, tender leaves and crunchy stalks.

Chard has been around for thousands of years and likely originated in the Mediterranean, where it was in heavy culinary rotation until spinach came along.

Find out what to do with rainbow chard »

Beat the Heat With Frozen Treats

by in Recipes, August 5th, 2011

Welcome to the dog days of summer. Hot, humid, sticky and sweaty, the month of August practically forces us to seek solace amongst chilly air conditioners, deep swimming pools and the coldest of foods. Stay cool and refreshed with these frozen summertime sweet recipes below. Featuring classic and creative ingredients, these tasty delights are practically melting with flavor.

Perfect for kids (and kids at heart), Food Network Magazine’s Coconut Pops (pictured above) are hand-held treats bursting with cool, piña colada-inspired flavors. Made with rich coconut milk, these creamy pops can easily be frozen in small paper cups instead of plastic popsicle molds.

More frozen treats after the jump »