Diving In, Pig’s Feet First — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, January 21st, 2014

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Not every ingredient is a delight in the Chopped Kitchen — some are more difficult than others and contestants must deal with them as best they can. What Chopped judges look for in those cases is a dish that expertly combines a less-desirable ingredient with the rest of the basket ingredients. Facing the same appetizer basket as the contestants from Chopped: Hoofin’ It, judges Marc, Maneet and Aarón took up spots in the Chopped Kitchen for an After Hours competition where they cooked with butter beans, sweet potato chips, coleslaw mix and pickled pig’s feet.

On the show, the chef competitors did their best with the baskets they were dealt, but some didn’t transform every single ingredient to its full potential. Marc, Maneet and Aarón immediately jumped into the cooking, diving right into working with the pig’s feet, which required the most care to transform. The goal was to incorporate the pig’s feet while also disguising any of the ingredient’s negative attributes.

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The Kitchen from Marcela’s Point of View — with Photos!

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, January 21st, 2014

Behind the Scenes on The Kitchen, Episode 3by Marcela Valladolid

It’s my turn this week to take you behind the scenes of our new show, The Kitchen. On behalf of Geoffrey, Katie, Jeff and Sunny, I’d like to tell you how absolutely grateful we are for the feedback, ideas, photos, recipes and love you’ve sent our way. All five of us, along with what has to be one of the best production crews I’ve ever worked with, are constantly looking for and debating what topics, recipes and ideas you would find most interesting.

Personally, I want you to walk away from each show feeling like you have learned something — like it was worth sharing your hour with us. We all have very different perspectives on food and cooking, and, I think, that’s what’s so great about The Kitchen; at one point or another, someone is going to say something that you connect with.

I’m injecting this show with two syringes: la mom and, because it’s in my DNA, la Mexican. It’s remarkable how even though I’ve dedicated my life to food, I’m still stumped every once in a while about what to put on the table for Fau (aka Fausto, my son). Anybody can buy a rotisserie chicken and make some tacos (often dinner at this casa), but what if you don’t even have time to go to the grocery store and get the darn chicken? What if, more than once a week, it’s like a Chopped episode and you just open up the pantry praying that you’ve got enough in there to whip up something good and nutritious for your family?

Behind-the-scenes photos

Party-Ready Punch Recipes

by in Drinks, January 21st, 2014

Big-batch drink recipes are great for serving your game-day crowd. Inspired by classic cocktails that are normally mixed in a shaker a few at a time, these punches are a great make-ahead solution for your party.

1. Hurricane Passion Punch (pictured above)

This New Orleans classic is a crowd-pleaser no matter what city you’re cheering from or which team you’re rooting for. The key to the fruit juice-filled cocktail’s nutty undertones? Almond extract. Garnish individual glasses with an orange wedge and a maraschino cherry.

More punch recipes

Dessert of the Month: Date and Oat Squares

by in Uncategorized, January 21st, 2014

date bars

When it comes to sweet treats, I often find myself craving something with a chewy texture, a mild sweetness and a little nuttiness. These squares have plenty of body from the toasted oats plus all of the aforementioned flavors — along with a g...

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Star Marketing in the Supermarket — Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off

by in Shows, January 21st, 2014

Tiffany and judgesOn last night’s episode of Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off, the celebrities entered Fairway Market in Woodland Park, N.J., for a challenge that involved cooking and creating their own food product to market to shoppers. The goal of the challenge, as Rachael and Guy emphasized, was for each celebrity to turn out a product that best represented his or her own personality. Once the celebrities were ready to serve, they handed out samples and vied for votes from shoppers, using any sales tactic that would work: Judy cracked Jewish mother jokes. Jake broke out the dance moves. Tiffany turned up the ’80s flair. And Penn talked up his food product like a pro salesman.

For the first time this season, an MVP was chosen from each team and a $2,500 donation awarded to each winner’s charity. Penn was named the MVP of Team Rachael and Herschel was named MVP for Team Guy. But unfortunately, that still meant one celebrity had to be sent home.

Find out who went home and vote for your favorite

15-Minute Burrito — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, January 20th, 2014

Brown Rice and Bean Burrito
“It’s like eating a hidden salad,” Food Network Kitchens chefs say of their healthy, fuss-free Brown Rice and Bean Burrito (pictured above). “Burritos are a great way to introduce vegetables and salads to your kids.” The quick-fix recipe, ready to eat in only 15 minutes, is rolled full of better-for-you brown rice and protein-packed black beans, plus cheddar, creamy avocado and fresh carrots, so it’s every bit as hearty as meat-filled burritos, but lighter and fresher than the classic variety. If you’ve struggled with rolling burritos or sandwich wraps before, know that the process goes smoothly here, thanks to the avocado, which is gently mashed with zesty lime juice and will act like glue.

This recipe makes enough for just one burrito, so it’s a go-to option when prepping an after-school snack for your child or packing a lunchbox for yourself, but you can also increase the amount of each ingredient and feed a family. Let your kids have a hand in mealtime by rolling their ultimate burrito. Just set up a fillings bar complete with the prepared ingredients, and allow them to add what they’d like to the tortilla and roll it up.

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Cook with Tea

by in Food Network Magazine, January 20th, 2014

Cook With TeaTo add flavor without extra calories, turn to your favorite tea: Steep a bag in water and use that for boiling vegetables, cooking grains or poaching chicken and fish (like in Food Network Magazine‘s Green Tea Salmon). Try all kinds of tea, such as black, mint, chai, chamomile or spice. Just don’t steep the tea bag for too long; the flavor can become bitter.