Drawing on Inspiration: Holiday Recipes as Art

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 1st, 2010
Artist Alison Kolesar of Williamstown, Massachusetts, warms us up with minted cocoa. Click the image to expand it.

They Draw & Cook The Dish is teaming up with Nate Padavick and Salli Swindell, founders of They Draw and Cook, all December to share holiday recipes rendered by artists and inspiring all sorts of seasonal cooking with Food Network chefs. Each day, stop by the Dish for a new drawing and Nate and Salli’s liner notes about the illustrations and the artists. Tell us which you like and why. A dollop of this, a dash of that and some talent add up to interesting ideas in the kitchen. Visit theydrawandcook.com for more info.

This is a really great design to kick off a month’s worth of wonderful holiday recipe illustrations. At They Draw and Cook, we think this is such a fun and festive collage. It captures everything we love to see in an illustrated recipe: a nice layout, interesting typography, good color palettes, creative approaches to illustration, a bit of a story and, of course, a great recipe! The artist whose work is shown here, Alison Kolesar, is an awesome illustrator – she has the best handwriting, and her whimsy is simply magical.

See more warm and toasty holiday drink ideas today on They Draw and Cook, or riff on your favorite Food Network chefs’ hot cocoa creations:

—Nate Padavick & Salli Swindell from They Draw and Cook.

12 Days of Cookies: Barefoot Contessa’s Coconut Macaroons

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 1st, 2010
You need just five ingredients to make Ina's classic macaroons.

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, FoodNetwork.com’s annual cookie swap. Each day visit us here on the Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give – or keep – from favorite Food Network chefs. Then visit Cooking Channel’s blog for great takes on holiday baking from Cooking Channel chefs and Food People alike – cookies by the dozen to celebrate all season.

Crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside—those are the qualities of a perfect Coconut Macaroon, and Ina Garten’s recipe will guarantee you get celebratory results every time. All you have to do is pull together a mere five ingredients and bake them until their frilly tops are kissed with gold. Then arrange them on a pretty plate and pass them around.

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Hanukkah Latke Cook-Off: Duff vs. Nigella

by in Holidays, December 1st, 2010
"My great-grandmother Mamo made the best latkes in the whole world!" says Duff.

Tonight’s the first night of Hanukkah, and naturally, potato latkes are on the menu. These fried potato pancakes are a Hanukkah tradition—in addition to lighting the candles, fried foods are eaten to celebrate the oil that burned for eight nights. This year, Food Network Magazine challenged Duff Goldman and Nigella Lawson to a cook-off to see who could fry up the best batch.

"These are sweet, gorgeous fritters to be eaten straight from the pan and drenched with maple syrup," says Nigella.

Duff went traditional, “slightly” adapting his great-grandmother’s classic recipe, while Nigella took a sweet route, grating apples into her latkes and drizzling them with maple syrup. It’s a tough call…good thing Hanukkah lasts eight nights, so there’s plenty of time to try both!

Let us know which latkes get your vote! And for lots more Hanukkah recipes, check out FoodNetwork.com/Hanukkah.

Side Dish: More Food on the Web

by in View All Posts, November 30th, 2010
Imagine Eating Nothing But These for Two Months

The Potato Non-Famine: Chris Voigt, executive director of the Washington State Potato Commission, announced last October that he was going to eat nothing but potatoes for 60 days. His reason? “It seemed as if the potato was being blamed for the obesity crisis, for diabetes, that it was the scourge of the earth,” Voigt explained to the Seattle Times. WIth the two-month mission just about up — which resulted in him pounding down 20 potatoes a day and dropping almost as many pounds — Voigt has every reason to be pleased. [seattletimes.com]

A Few Reasons Why One Should Never Make Ketchup: If you’ve ever thought about concocting that sweet tomato condiment at home, read on as humor rag McSweeny‘s throws a rotten tomato at the idea. “You need mustard to make this ketchup?” the writer asks on more than one occasion. “Give up now.” [mcsweenys.net]

One-Item Menu Restaurant Trend: In urban areas, it’s not uncommon to find restaurants that serve one thing and one thing only. Whether the niche item is mac & cheese, meatballs or rice pudding, these hot spots are succeeding with featured dishes that spark a nostalgic response from the patron. “Fried chicken is comforting because it has an emotional touch point, but it’s also cravable,” Elizabeth Karmel, chef at NYC’s Hill Country, told the New York Times. “We had no idea just how desperate people would be to eat fried chicken.” [nytimes.com]

Red Bees Swarm Brooklyn: Bees living in urban environments have, evidently, lots of distractions from foliage. In Brooklyn, Dell’s Maraschino Cherries Company is calling to the little guys with promises of sweet (and Red Dye No. 40-colored) nectar. When the bees return to the hive, their honey is turning out red and metallic tasting. But not all’s lost, according to one Brooklyn beekeeper, David Selig. “When the sun is a bit down, they glow red in the evenings,” Selig told the New York Times. “They were slightly fluorescent. And it was beautiful.” [nytimes.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.

12 Days of Cookies: Aarti’s Spiced Chocolate Gingerbread

by in Holidays, News, Recipes, November 30th, 2010
Garam Masala-Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies
Our newest star spices up holiday gingerbread with gentle Indian flavor.

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, FoodNetwork.com’s annual cookie swap. Each day visit us here on the Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give – or keep – from favorite Food Network chefs. Then stop by Cooking Channel’s blog for great takes on holiday baking from Cooking Channel chefs and Food People alike – cookies by the dozen to celebrate all season.

Ginger and garam masala are a natural fit in savory Indian cooking, so why not in a cookie? And any sweet decked with chocolate is sure to be a hit (just ask Ms. Deen about Day 1′s cookie).

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12 Days of Cookies: Paula’s Gooey Chocolate Butter Cookies

by in Holidays, November 29th, 2010
Our fans love Paula's gooey, buttery cookies: The five-star recipe has close to 700 reviews! Make a batch and add yours.

12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, FoodNetwork.com’s annual cookie swap. Each day visit us here on the Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give – or keep – from favorite Food Network chefs. Then visit Cooking Channel’s blog for great takes on holiday baking from Cooking Channel chefs and Food People alike – cookies by the dozen to celebrate all season.

Who better than the Queen of Butter to kick off FoodNetwork.com’s annual cookie party, y’all? Paula Deen’s Chocolate Gooey Butter Cookies are chocolate-kissed snowballs that’ll melt in your mouth faster than you can say, “Hand me another one!”–which believe me, you will. Thanks to a combination of chocolate cake mix (shh! it’s a super shortcut) and cream cheese, these cookies stay moist and tender after baking. Dusted with a sprinkling of powdered sugar, they’re rich, sumptuous and a dessert unto themselves, no ice cream needed. But if you wanted to add a scoop….

Get Paula’s recipe and check out dozens and dozens of batches in 12 Days of Cookies for more sweet ideas. Then tell us what you’re baking.


Easy Cookie Swap

by in View All Posts, November 29th, 2010
Gingerbread Cookies from FoodNetwork.com

Are you having visions of sugarplums dancing or hallucinations from too much turkey? There’s no denying that the holiday season is already in full swing. Make this year easier with a cookie swap—a great way to try new recipes without having to bake them all yourself. We’ve chosen some of our favorite recipes for cookie-swapping and invite you to gather some friends and share the fun.

Animal crackers began as edible ornaments, sold in Philadelphia in the late 19th century. Giada’s simple Animal Sugar Cookies are probably quite a bit tastier and definitely more colorful. Appease your flock with a batch: They’re perfect to eat, share or hang on the tree.

Believe it or not, Paula Deen has put a healthy twist on classic Peanut Butter Cookies, just in time for those sugar-free cookie lovers on your list. And for a treat less traditional, try the winning recipe from Emeril’s Cookie Contest, Chris’ Kicked Up Spicy Walnut Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies. This cookie literally has something for everyone.

If baking is not your thing, Cooking Channel’s Michael Chiarello has you covered with No Bake Chocolate Amaretto Cookies.  Or, visit Food.com for No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies. Both recipes come together in a matter of minutes and set in the refrigerator.

For a sweet adult treat, whip up some Limoncello Cheesecake Squares or Boozy Blondies from Food2.com to share. There’s nothing like a cookie to melt away the stress of all that holiday shopping.

Sign up for the Food Network’s 12 Days of Cookies newsletter and get a baker’s dozen new cookie recipes, one per day starting today.

Turkeyed Out? Black Friday, Red (Sauce) Alert

by in Recipes, November 26th, 2010

Bedeviled by holiday shopping and too much turkey? Eggs in purgatory are heaven.

At a random moment tucked between November 10 and November 17 I started dreaming beyond turkey. The buildup of birds every which way, and sides upon sides all homey and comforting, simply got to be too much of a cornucopia. So Black Friday for me is Red Sauce Friday.

While everyone else is grabbing leftoverssandwiches, chili and soups, grab a jar of tomato sauce. There are tons of recipes to make with it with nary a shopping trip. Indeed, the day after Thanksgiving, I am grateful for Food Network Magazine’s 50 Things to Make with a Jar of Tomato Sauce, specifically the Eggs in Purgatory, Mussels Marinara and those Pizza Potatoes, chockful of a different sort of stuffing.

Let the wild holiday rumpus begin–after you’re sated with something saucy.

Check out Cooking From the Pantry, filled with skip-the-lines-eat-now ideas.

Thanksgiving Side of the Day: Giada’s Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta

by in Holidays, November 24th, 2010

brussels sprouts with pancetta
The clock is ticking ever closer on the Thanksgiving countdown, but we’re still featuring different side dishes to inspire your harvest spread right up until the big day itself.  We’ve covered the basics – stuffing, cranberry sauce, and mashed and sweet potato options – but if you’ve been waiting for something a little fresher, your time has come. Giada’s Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta should be able to win over even your pickiest eaters – simmered in chicken broth and tossed with crisp, garlicky pancetta and shallots they’re both a refreshingly light companion to Thanksgiving’s heartier fare without being any less indulgent.

Browse 50+ Thanksgiving side dishes to fill out your menu. And, for hundreds more ideas, recipes and menus for your feast, check out FoodNetwork.com/Thanksgiving.

Behind the Scenes in Food Network Kitchens: Deep-Fried Turkey

by in Behind the Scenes, Holidays, November 24th, 2010
Recipe tester Leah Brickley (cautiously!) experiments with indoor turkey-frying in Food Network Kitchens.

Sometimes being married to a kitchen gadget geek has its perks. For our November issue of Food Network Magazine, we had to test Cat Cora’s deep-fried turkey recipe. Deep-fried turkeys have become really popular over the past few years and Cat’s is rubbed with a delicious Cajun spice blend. The turkey comes out crispy and really flavorful.

Our test kitchen is located in New York City’s Chelsea Market building, and the outdoor green space available to set up a vat of boiling oil is very limited to non-existent. Luckily, my husband, Paul, had a rather interesting solution to my deep-fryer problems: Why not fry it indoors? At first I thought he was crazy, but then he told me about this new (and safe) indoor turkey fryer made by MasterBuilt. It sits right on your counter, uses about half the amount the oil and has a safety magnetic break-away cord.

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