Penne With Roasted Vegetables and Prosciutto — The Weekender

by in Recipes, June 29th, 2012

penne with roasted vegetables the weekender
My parents are avid vegetable and herb gardeners. My dad is responsible for digging, planting and watering, while my mom tackles the harvesting, cooking and preserving. It’s a fairly equitable division of labor for most of the season. The only time my mom complains about her end of the bargain is when the garden begins belching forth many pounds of zucchini, yellow crookneck squash and flying saucer-shaped pattypans.

Whether you’re a home gardener, CSA member or a regular farmers’ market shopper, keeping up with the flow of summer squash during its high season can easily become a full-time cooking job. I find that I am constantly looking for ways to cook it down, use it up and transform it from a rapidly reproducing raw ingredient into breakfast, lunch and dinner options.

To that end, I grate it into baked goods, cook it down into sandwich spreads and puree it into soup with tomatoes, eggplant, onions and plenty of Parmesan cheese. I also like to grill or roast it into submission and then toss it into pasta salads. Topped with a bit of cold chicken or crumbled feta, it makes for an easy dinner or potluck contribution.

Before you heat your pasta water, read these tips

Caption It: Shopping Woes

by , June 29th, 2012

On Sunday night the eight remaining finalists leave their home-away-from-home in the Big Apple and head south for the sunny skies of Miami. This trip, however, won’t exactly be a tropical vacation — they’re challenged to cook for and present i...

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Chef Wanted: Mucho Ultima Update

by in Shows, June 28th, 2012

Chef Wanted

At Mucho Ultima in Manhattan Beach, Calif., owner Scott Linquist needed a new executive chef to help turn his business into a dining destination. Anne Burrell arrived with four candidates lined up, confident that one would be the right fit for the modern Mexican restaurant. After two tough cooking tests and an intense dinner service, Scott hired Bryon Freeze. We checked in with Scott to see how Chef Bryon and the restaurant are doing.

Six weeks after Bryon joined the team, Mucho Ultima is back on the right track. “We are ecstatic!” says Scott. “Bryon’s energy and passion are exactly what we saw from him during the show.” Scott and Bryon have both worked many long days since the taping and Bryon “comes in here pumped and ready to attack every day and never once has complained about the workload.”

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Fighting Summer Stains: Fruits and Berries

by in How-to, June 28th, 2012

summer berries
When we think of summer desserts, our minds turn to grilled plums, peach cobblers, fruit-filled pies and bowls of fresh blueberries and raspberries. The fruits of summer are ripe, sweet and juicy. They’re also pesky stain makers. As Tre Mitchell Wright, a fabric-care expert at Whirlpool Institute of Fabric Science, points out, “Fruits were some of the original dyes; the longer they sit, especially on natural fabrics like cotton, the harder they’ll be to get out.”

Your best tactic for combating stains from fruits (both cooked and raw) is to first scrape any excess fruit off of the garment. If the garment is labeled “dry clean only,” don’t try to treat the stain. If washable, run the fabric under cold water to flush the stain out. Wring out the excess water and apply plain white vinegar to the stained area. Next work a laundry pretreatment or liquid detergent into the fabric with your hands and let it do its work for at least 10 minutes before laundering the piece using the warmest water the care label allows. If the discoloration remains after washing, try soaking the garment in a solution of color-safe bleach and then laundering it again.

Watch out for watermelon! Find out why

On the Blogs: Duff’s New Cake Shop, Beer Foam and Remembering Nora Ephron

by in Community, June 28th, 2012

ace of cakes duff goldmanThe Sun-Times: “You can build a bear, bottle your own wine, paint pottery — and now, decorate your own television-worthy cake.” Ace of Cakes star Duff Goldman has opened Duff’s Cakemix, a make-your-own-cake shop in Los Angeles.

Diner’s Journal: The world will miss screenwriter (Julie & Julia and When Harry Met Sally…), feminist, journalist and foodie Nora Ephron.

Fast Company: Want fresh local produce, but the convenience of a supermarket? The company BrightFarms is working to oversee the installation of hydroponic greenhouses on store rooftops.

Eat Boutique: Learn how to plant, harvest, store and enjoy radishes with this beautiful illustrated guide.

The Salt: Cool off this summer with an ice-cold beer, topped with frozen foam. It won’t water down your beverage and will help keep it cool for an additional 30 minutes.


Season the Rim: How to Make Flavored Salts

by in Behind the Scenes, Food Network Magazine, June 28th, 2012

Perfect Margarita
Dress up your margaritas with flavored salt. A bold flavor on the rim is a fun, easy way to gussy up a classic. In a recent issue of Food Network Magazine you’ll find three awesome variations, but I wanted to share one more favorite that we didn’t have room for this time around: a mixed-berry salt.

The tartness of the freeze-dried fruit goes perfectly with a margarita. And of course, feel free to experiment with whatever fruits you like!

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7 Tips for Feeding Picky Kids

by , June 28th, 2012
picky eater

Will your child ever love spinach as much as you do?

Getting kids to eat healthy has become the Mount Everest of parenthood. Every day is a rocky, uphill battle with daily obstacles thwarting parents’ best intentions: bake sales, kiddie menus, birt...

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Chef Wanted: Anne Burrell Talks About Potential Candidates and Her Own Job Interviews

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, June 27th, 2012

anne burrell
This Thursday night on Food Network (10pm/9c), Anne Burrell will be putting her mentor hat back on as she helps top restaurants find an executive chef — the critical employee who can make or break a restaurant — on Chef Wanted. Each week, Anne Burrell will put four candidates through the toughest job interview of their lives, testing everything from their culinary mettle to business acumen. It all ends with the biggest test of all: running the restaurant.

We recently chatted with Anne about being a mentor: identifying red flags on resumes, the hard questions she has to ask and even her own toughest job interview.

What is the best question to ask a potential candidate?

AB: There are a few questions I always ask. The first really important question is why do you want this job? This is to see if they’re looking for any job or if they’re actually interested in this particular job. Second, why did you get into cooking? I want to find out if this is their passion or just a job to them.

Get more from Anne Burrell