Crème Fraiche — Off the Beaten Aisle

by in How-to, Recipes, January 12th, 2012

croque monsieur
Not sure what crème fraiche is or why you should care?

Consider it a relative of sour cream. Except that while both are white, thick and creamy, crème fraiche is the richer, sexier and more talented relative.

Here’s the deal. Like yogurt, sour cream and crème fraiche are dairy products produced thanks to the miracle of beneficial bacteria.

But while yogurt is made by adding those bacteria to milk, sour cream and crème fraiche are made from cream.

So what’s the difference? Sour cream is made from cream that is 20 percent fat; crème fraiche sports an even more succulent 30 percent. That may not sound like a big difference, but it matters in both taste and versatility. That extra fat turns crème fraiche into a kitchen workhorse.

But first, taste. While sour cream tastes, well, sour, crème fraiche is rich and tart. And as a byproduct of the bacteria added to produce it, crème fraiche tends to make other foods taste buttery. But unlike yogurt, crème fraiche isn’t particularly acidic (so it’s not great for marinades).

Get the recipe for Croque Monsieur »

Dine & Dash — A Year in Fun Races

by in Events, Food Network Magazine, January 12th, 2012

doughman challenge
Food Network Magazine found a year’s worth of wacky races that test your endurance — and your appetite.

JANUARY

Go Nut Donut Run, Greenville, S.C.

If you think running four miles is tough, try doing it after eating six glazed doughnuts at the two-mile mark. This event, held for the first time last January, was designed as a training run for the 2011 Krispy Kreme Challenge in Raleigh, N.C. (Competitors at that famous seven-year-old February race have to eat a dozen doughnuts at the halfway point.) But the warm-up run was such a hit last year that organizers are making it an annual event. January 15; malonecoaching.net

FEBRUARY

International Pancake Day RaceLiberal, Kan.

While people in New Orleans are celebrating Fat Tuesday, locals in this Kansas town partake in a different Shrove Tuesday tradition: a pancake race. Since 1950, women in Liberal have been competing against a team in Olney, England, to see who will be the fastest to flip a pancake in a pan, run 415 yards on an S-shaped course while holding the pan and then flip the pancake again near the end. Right now, the score stands at 36 wins for Liberal and 25 for Olney — but who knows what will happen this year? February 21; pancakeday.net

More Dine & Dash races »

Chatting With the Latest Celebrity Cook-Off Exile

by in Shows, January 11th, 2012

alyssa campanella
Every Sunday, two of Food Network’s most popular personalities, Rachael Ray and Guy Fieri, go head-to-head in Rachael vs. Guy Celebrity Cook-Off. Divided into Team Rachael and Team Guy, the celebrity contestants face intense weekly challenges that have them racing against the clock to prepare elaborate meals for up to 150 guests. The winning and losing teams are chosen by guest diners and after six episodes, the last celebrity standing will win a cash donation to his or her favorite charity.

Every week, FN Dish brings you exclusive exit interviews with the latest Celebrity Cook-Off exile to get the boot.

This week, Alyssa Campanella, winner of the 2011 Miss USA Pageant said goodbye.

Find out what Alyssa had to say »

The Big Waste — Reaction From Fans on Facebook and Twitter

by in Community, Shows, January 11th, 2012

the big waste
Did you know about 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is never eaten? For every American, 200 pounds of perfectly edible food ends up in the trash each year — that’s enough waste to fill a football stadium every single day, according to Food Network’s The Big Waste, a food-waste special, which aired Sunday night.

The show brought to light just how much food America’s convenience stores, restaurants and supermarkets throw out every year: about 27 million tons. Chefs Bobby Flay, Michael Symon, Anne Burrell and Alex Guarnaschelli were given 48 hours to create a multi-course gourmet banquet using only food destined for the trash heap.

Scouring grocery aisles, produce farms, orchard lines and garbage piles on the streets of New York City, the chefs were astounded at the things people discarded.

They weren’t the only ones shocked. The show created quite a buzz on Twitter and Facebook when we asked fans “Tell us: What is one thing you will do to cut down on food waste?”

The reaction from fans on Facebook and Twitter »

Paula Deen’s Recipes Get Healthy, Y’All

by in Shows, January 11th, 2012
Bobby and Paula Deen
Bobby is putting his mother Paula Deen's recipes on a diet.

Staying slim with celebrated Southern chef Paula Deen in the kitchen? It ain’t easy, y’all.  But that’s what Paula’s son Bobby has managed to do. His secret? Remaking his mama’s most crave-worthy recipes so they’re lighter, leaner and still just as delicious.

In Bobby’s new show, Not My Mama’s Meals, he slims down Paula’s most indulgent dishes to match his lifestyle. Tonight at 9pm ET on Cooking Channel, Bobby remakes Paula’s famous Pimento Cheese spread into a delicious grilled cheese sandwich, that’s just a little lighter. But you’re still gonna love it…

Read more

Best 5 Chicken Soup Recipes

by in Recipes, January 11th, 2012


The ultimate bowl of piping-hot comfort food, chicken soup is family-friendly fare at its best. Instead of resorting to the red and white soup can for a quick meal, try Food Network’s top five chicken soup recipes that are both easy to prepare and classically flavored. Serve up a bowl of our best today and bring a little warmth to these chilly winter nights.

5. Hearty Italian Chicken and Vegetable Soup — Simmer the broth with a Parmesan cheese rind to add a subtle salty, nutty flavor to this veggie-packed soup (pictured above).

4. Thai Chicken Soup — Made with coconut milk and green curry paste, this Asian-inspired dish boasts a burst of color, thanks to sliced red bell peppers.

Get the top three recipes »

Guy Talks Celebrity Cook-Off on Twitter and Facebook

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, January 10th, 2012

guy fieri
Two of Food Network’s most popular personalities, Rachael Ray and Guy Fieri, are going head-to-head in a new series, Rachael vs. Guy Celebrity Cook-Off. Both Rachael and Guy serve as coaches and mentors to eight multi-talented celebrities, ranging from an Olympic gold medalist to Grammy-winning artists to a Golden Globe-nominated actor — contestants who are all passionate about food and cooking.

Food Network recently caught up with Guy to talk about the show and Team Guy on Twitter and Facebook.

@Rbrittenham: What are you going to do to make your team stand out? What will set you apart?
GF: I want them to be individually creative and do their best.

@jcaonguyen: Which celebrity had no cooking experience at all prior to being on the show?
GF: All had some sort of experience, but I can’t give away insider info. You’ll be surprised just how strong they really are.

More from Facebook and Twitter »

‘Smile,’ There’s a New Girl Scout Cookie — Taste Test

by in Product Reviews, January 10th, 2012

girl scout cookie savannah smile
Make space in your freezer and clear out the shelves in the pantry: It’s time to load up on Girl Scout cookie favorites like Thin Mints, Tagalongs and Trefoils. Leave room for a new favorite this year, though, as Savannah Smiles are added to the 2012 Girl Scout Cookie list. The Girl Scouts certainly have lots to smile about this year as they celebrate the organization’s 100th anniversary.

The new lemon wedge cookie is fresh and just the perfect size. Covered in powdered sugar and shaped like a smile, you can’t help but grin as you pop these cookies into your mouth one by one. The sugar coating can get a bit messy, but there’s no shame in licking your fingers clean. With each bite you’ll be transported to a cool fall day in Georgia, curled up on a porch swing with a cup of tea and these addictive lemon cookies. Sounds like a mighty fine afternoon to us.

To order cookies, find a local council near you.

Vote for your favorite Girl Scout cookie »

Recipe for a Lasting Resolution — Simple Scratch Suppers

by in Family, Recipes, January 10th, 2012

macaroni and cheese
It’s a new year and headlines tell us it’s time for a “new you,” too. That’s easier said than done, as any mom will tell you. The responsibilities of parenthood don’t magically disappear with the change of the calendar year.

After a month of eating on the run, lots of baking, and perhaps lots of snacking, it’s hard to find the motivation to break up with those bad habits. Throw in a few major personal curve balls and well I found myself really down on my ability to find my way out, so to speak. What I realized while making a simple recipe for muesli the other day is that I need to be as kind and gentle with myself as I am with others.

How does any of this apply to getting the three meals plus snacks ready we need for our families each day? For starters, don’t try to change everything at once in terms of how you cook. Just because you know whole-grain flours are better for you, doesn’t mean you have to start using it in every recipe immediately. Give yourself time to learn how it works in your favorite dishes, and time to find new recipes you like using it in. Take a cue from your kids here, and learn how to walk before you leap right in.

Read more

Sweet or Savory?

by in Community, Recipes, January 9th, 2012

Giada's Roman-Style Chicken
Nearly 1,400 Food Network Facebook fans responded when we asked the simple question: “Sweet or savory?” Many of you said savory, but even more of you said both. Find inspiration for your next meal in these highly rated recipes from your Food Network favorites.

Savory Recipes
Keep your New Year’s resolution on track by cooking up Giada’s Roman-Style Chicken (pictured above). Hearty diced tomatoes, prosciutto and bell peppers give this dish tons of flavor without a ton of calories. (One serving is only 266 calories!)

Try Ellie’s Three Bean and Beef Chili to warm up on a cold January day. Quick and easy, don’t be surprised if this becomes your go-to chili recipe.

Get more savory and sweet recipes »