by Sara Levine in View All Posts, October 8th, 2010
by Michelle Buffardi in Behind the Scenes, October 8th, 2010
- The crowd at Chelsea Market After Dark is psyched to party with Alton
A star-studded, food-filled weekend of festivities officially kicked off last night with numerous events around New York City. Along with hundreds of fans, we noshed, sipped and chatted with Alton Brown after hours at Chelsea Market—which happens to be Food Network’s headquarters.
by Grant Dudley in Shows, October 8th, 2010
- Cupcake Wars' Candace Nelson; Aarti Sequeira from Aarti Party; Marcela Valladolid, host of Mexican Made Easy; Maile Carpenter, Editor in Chief of Food Network Magazine; Sunny Anderson, host of Cooking for Real and Vicky Wellington, publisher of Food Network Magazine
The stars are all in town for the New York City Wine and Food Festival, and several of them stopped by Food Network Magazine’s lounge party on Wednesday night at Thalassa restaurant. Sunny Anderson, Candace Nelson, Marcela Valladolid, Aarti Sequeira and Melissa d’Arabian all came by, and party-goers drank champagne and snacked on panini inspired by the October issue’s 50 panini booklet, as well as cupcakes decorated with the magazine’s logo.
- Sweet party treats
To celebrate the magazine’s second anniversary, we asked the stars about their favorite features in the mag:
Marcela’s favorite section of the magazine is He Made/She Made, where two chefs each put their own spin on a favorite dish (Marcela and Chris Cosentino battled over nachos in this month’s issue). If she were throwing a similar cook-off, Marcela says she would pit Bobby Flay against Ming Tsai to see who makes the best traditional Mexican mole sauce.
- Melissa d'Arabian, host of Ten Dollar Dinners, and Marcela Valladolid, host of Mexican Made Easy
by Kelsey Vala in View All Posts, October 7th, 2010
Don’t pretend that you’re above it – none of us are immune. Even though we’re mature adults working in the real world, there is still that potential to have a “big man on campus” or experience “cheerleader envy” with coworkers. Is there someone winning the popularity contest at your workplace? I like to think I’m winning at Food Network’s offices.
Now, with that mindset, let’s look at the chefs competing this season in The Next Iron Chef. Who do you want to win this thing? I don’t want you to vote based on who has the better credentials and who can best give Bobby and Morimoto a run for their money – that’s what Michael, Donatella and Simon are there for. I want you to go back to your high school days when nothing else mattered but who was the coolest, who had the best personality and hair, and OK, for this particular vote, maybe who poses best holding a knife. (Oh, I’ve just noticed Chef Forgione has no knife in his picture. But still, he has a mohawk and that alone is enough to get my vote.)
- Yes, they all have talent. But, who is the most popular?
If the chefs themselves were voting, clearly Chef Tsai would be their prom king. He seems to have everyone a bit intimidated.
Vote now, then tell me who you voted for below (and the silly reason why you chose your chef).
Be sure and watch Episode 2 this Sunday at 9pm/8c (then vote even more). Like high school (and the workplace), who is popular and who is not can change from day to day (or episode to episode).
by Guest Blogger in Shows, October 7th, 2010
- The Michelin Guide, 2011
Highly coveted Michelin Stars for 2011 were recently awarded to a group of amazing New York City restaurants, including the highest three-star rating for Daniel, Le Bernardin, Masa, Per Se, and Jean-Georges. Originally started in France in 1900, the Michelin Guide sets the worldwide restaurant standards. The 2011 Michelin Guides covers U.S. restaurants in New York, San Francisco and, for the first time, Chicago.
by akagan in View All Posts, October 6th, 2010
- The enzymes in pineapple were responsible for Chef Estes' mushy pork, says our resident food science guru Alton Brown
Before our 10 rivals landed in L.A. to compete on The Next Iron Chef, each was asked what ingredient they couldn’t live without on a desert island. And what do you know? The chefs’ answers (ranging from corn and limes to chicken and whole pigs) determined their secret ingredient in the very first episode.
While Chef Duskie Estes had done so well in the first round, winning the sandwich challenge, her elimination-round meal landed her in the bottom three. Instead of utilizing the whole pig she received, she ended up preparing only a few cubes of skewered pork loin for her suckling pig surf-and-turf dish. While all the judges loved the broth and seafood components of her dish, even pork-obsessed Iron Chef Michael Symon said he thought the dish would be better without the pork, which tasted mushy—a secret ingredient failure.
What was the problem? Alton Brown mentioned the effect of the enzymes in pineapple on meats. Chef Estes said she thought the pineapple would make a good marinade, and she wasn’t entirely wrong. Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain, which actually breaks down proteins and can have great tenderizing properties. She selected the pork loin because it was the fastest-cooking cut of meat on the pig, but didn’t take into consideration that it was also the leanest, most tender, and most likely to completely break down from the pineapple’s enzymes.
Had Chef Estes chosen a tougher cut of meat, the pineapple may have worked better as the tenderizing marinade she envisioned. Fortunately for Duskie, this “fundamental flaw,” as the judges called it, did not send her home this round.
Don’t let Chef Estes’ mushy pork scare you off from cooking with pineapple. Try one of these five-star recipes that showcase the fruit in delicious ways:
Check out all the rivals’ dishes in our behind-the-scenes photo gallery from Episode One.
Which rival chef do you think will get foiled this Sunday? Don’t miss The Next Iron Chef at 9pm/8c.
by Julia Simon in View All Posts, October 5th, 2010
- Next Food Network Star finalist Aria Kagan and her dad
Two years ago I lost my father—my best friend and someone who represented all that is good in the world—to cancer. Since then I’ve set out to celebrate his life however I can. When I came upon Fred’s Team and the New York City Marathon, I knew it was a perfect fit! Fred’s Team and its dedicated runners raise money for Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. With the money that is raised, MSKCC continues to work on finding better treatments, research and hope for a world without cancer.
I had never run a marathon before, but I felt it was an amazing challenge with a fabulous purpose. Training for a marathon takes a lot of dedication. I figured if my father could endure three years of chemo, radiation and multiple surgeries, I could totally run 26.2 miles. And so I did.
This year, I will be running in the 2010 NYC Marathon again with Fred’s Team (check out my Fred’s Team Page). I decided this year instead of just asking people to donate money, I wanted to do something to bring everyone together and celebrate the beauty of life.
by Simon Majumdar in Shows, October 4th, 2010
- Bacon-Wrapped Everything: So Last Year?
Bye Bye Bacon? The Wall Street Journal traces the popularity of bacon from an everyday breakfast food to a cooking super-trend, and one that’s about to sizzle out fast. “It’s been overplayed so much and my taste buds are tired of it,” Boston chef Ken Oringer tells the WSJ. So he, alongside a growing number of other cooks, has started replacing beloved cured pork for new flavor boosters, like smoked salt, Indian spices and shitake mushrooms. Just how seriously are some taking the self-imposed bacon ban? Oringer reportedly ordered a pastry chef to melt down her bacon bon bons into mole sauce for the staff only. [Wall Street Journal via eater.com]
Gardens are the New Bacon: According to a survey by the National Restaurant Association, the latest trend in the food industry is restaurant gardens. NPR reports that more and more spots are growing their own goodies in an attempt to control the quality of food and what ends up on the menu. And as for patrons? “It’s a benefit knowing the food you’re eating is grown 20 feet from the kitchen without pesticides or artificial fertilizers,” one Michigan restaurant-goer told NPR. “The scene, the beautiful colors when everything is ripe, and the way the gardens are laid out — [there’s] a beauty [to] it.” [NPR via eatocracy.cnn.com]
New Blog Favorite: Who doesn’t love a good illustrated book? And what about cookbooks? The best! So here’s where things get awesome: theydrawandcook.com combines recipes and imaginative artwork into one culinary fairytale. From a mojito infographic to an apple cider comic to a cartoony Yorkshire pudding, the recipes are as varied as their accompanying illustrations, and you can even submit your own pretty recipe renderings. [theydrawandcook.com]
The Way We Eat Now: Newsweek.com lists the 10 monumental things that account for Americans’ eating habits, tracking the evolution from early immigration through organic farming. Sandwiched in between are Julia Child, 750-pound microwaves, food-focused television programming (hey, that’s us!), and a spoonful of other easy-to-digest nuggets from history. Anything missing? [newsweek.com]
Here’s our round-up of food news, trends and happenings across the web. Check back for more, and tell us what else you’re loving in the comments.
by admin in Shows, October 4th, 2010
- Simon Majumdar (second from right) enjoys a break from the seriousness of his first day as a judge on The Next Iron Chef.
Next Iron Chef judge Simon Majumdar joins us on the FN Dish each week to share his insider’s take on what went down Sunday night.
The task that lay ahead of the judges became apparent the moment the contestants for Season Three of The Next Iron Chef were introduced. All were serious players and every one had a chance of making it to Kitchen Stadium.
The first challenge gave the chefs a chance to show us their chops, or indeed their corn, limes, fish or whatever ingredient they had offered up when asked what their desert island “must have” would be. Some might have regretted their enthusiasm once they knew they had only an hour to show their chosen item to its best effect while battling blowing sand and the encroaching waves.
The end results caused much discussion amongst the judges. Chef Tsai was a unanimous winner, but who was to be eliminated provided a more heated argument. Iron Chef Symon finally gave Chef Pagan a pass for having sand in his dish and he survived. So too did Chef Estes, but only by the skin of her teeth, and very possibly because we were already a bit scared of her.
That left Chef Andrew Kirschner, whose food I admire, to be the first to hear the dreaded words “You will not be the next Iron Chef.” A great shame, but that’s what you get for serving fatty duck and trying to blow Donatella’s head off with a hot pepper.
Look inside Chef Kirschner’s Next Iron Chef journal and flip through our behind-the-scenes gallery from Episode 1.
More about Simon Majumdar:
Simon’s book, Eat My Globe
Follow @SimonMajumdar on Twitter
- Chef Andrew Kirschner's advice to future Next Iron Chef rivals: "Have fun; you’re on television."
I have to admit that doing The Next Iron Chef was nerve-racking, but I took away great friendships and an experience I’ll always remember. Cooking can be so subjective and culinary arts have never been a competitive sport for me; this was different from anything I’d ever done.
I felt confident about my dish, Grilled Duck Breast with Green Papaya and Mango. It was familiar and comfortable, and represented one aspect of my cooking style. In retrospect, I could have made something more intricate, with a higher level of skill to impress, but my strategy for the first challenge was to rely more on technique and stay within my comfort zone.
We cooked on a grill out on the beach. Too bad, because I was pleased overall with the dish, and think it would have been a total success if I had more control over my equipment.
I would tell any chef wanting to get into this that they will benefit from the challenge of the show, but at the same time I would warn them to not take themselves too seriously. Enjoy the wonderful relationships you’ll make with other chefs from around the country. And have fun; you’re on television. I just wish I’d been able to compete longer so people could have really gotten to know me, both personally and professionally. Having said that, I hope people will come to Wilshire Restaurant and sample my goods!
–Chef Andrew Kirschner
Look inside Chef Kirschner’s Next Iron Chef journal and flip through our behind-the-scenes gallery from Episode 1.
More about Chef Kirschner:
Wilshire Restaurant on Facebook
Follow @wilshirerest on Twitter