Bobby Flay and Food Network are Looking for Food Entrepreneurs

by in Community, March 7th, 2012

 bobby flay
Think you’ve got what it takes to open a restaurant? Food Network’s own Bobby Flay is lending a helping hand to first-time restaurateurs. In an exciting new series, Bobby helps people with no previous culinary experience overcome the obstacles and inherent pitfalls in opening a successful eatery.

Are you a passionate self-starter who has dropped everything, traded careers or invested it all in the cutthroat restaurant industry? Do you want Bobby Flay to help make sure the doors don’t close before they even open?

Series shooting now until June 8.

Email FNDish@foodnetwork.com now with your story.

Enter for a Chance to Win a Copy of The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier

by in Books, Contests, March 7th, 2012

The Pioneer Woman Cooks Food From My Frontier
Ree Drummond, city girl turned rancher’s wife turned food blogger turned Food Network host, has another cookbook to add to her long list of accomplishments. The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier is a collection of recipes in constant rotation at Ree’s Oklahoma ranch.

Cowgirl Quiche, Sloppy Joes, Chicken Tortilla Soup and Fancy Mac and Cheese are just a few of Ree’s step-by-step recipes perfect for any occasion. Planning something special? Ree has recipes for that, too: Osso Buco, Honey-Plum-Soy Chicken or even Rib-Eye Steak With Onion-Blue Cheese Sauce. Don’t forget sinfully easy desserts like Strawberry Shortcake Cake and Apple Brown Betty.

You can order a copy right now, but we’d like to give you a chance to win one that Ree has autographed. All you have to do is comment on this post by telling us which one of Ree Drummond’s recipes is your favorite and why. We’re giving away five signed copies of her cookbook to randomly selected and very lucky commenters.

Find out how to win

Collecting Treasures in the Belly and the Hand

by in Events, March 7th, 2012

knivesIt’s interesting to hear what people collect during their travels. From postcards to original artwork, the choice of what to carry home reveals an intimate peek into the traveler’s life. As a food professional, it’s not surprising I hanker for edible souvenirs. Unfortunately, they don’t last any longer than the time it takes to eat a sausage sandwich on the cobbled streets of a German village, or lick the buttery crumbs off my fingers from an unbelievably good French croissant. A bottle of Italian olive oil might make it out of the country, but its lifespan is only as long as the number of home-cooked dinners it lasts for. Although the foods may be long gone, the memory lives on.

What do you collect when you travel?

March Food Festivals

by in Events, March 6th, 2012

strawberries
As late winter looks toward spring, this month’s food festivals head outdoors, to the woods and to the shore for sugar highs, creamy mirth and moveable feasts.

Florida Strawberry Festival, Plant City, Fla., March 1–11: The state fair has nothing on the Sunshine State’s Strawberry Festival. The sweet bonanza of fruit-related diversion and traditional food-fair merriment, including a royal court, draws hordes of hungry and smiling Floridians, not to mention snowbirds. All are eager for the simple pleasure of strawberries and cream, after which they can try their hand at carnie games on the midway or test their stomachs on a thrill ride. The Neighborhood Village displays homemade, local food and crafts. Competitions aren’t relegated to only the edible variety. Baking and preserving contests share schedule space with needlepoint and scrapbooking. Of course, there’s also pig racing, ideally paired with strawberry-topped funnel cake.

Cincinnati Wine Festival, Cincinnati, Ohio, March 8–10: Cincinnati is an underappreciated world-class city with a magnificent skyline (it’s important!), so it’s no surprise that the riverside urban center hosts a jam-packed oenophile fiesta, complete with dinners, sampling and an auction. The weekend affair is uncorked with a series of elegant wine dinners, followed the next day by hours of access to the tasting room. Ticket prices for seven sips begin at $40. Chin-chin, Cincy.

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Oreo Turns 100 Today

by in News, March 6th, 2012

birthday cake oreo
I open my Oreo cookie, carefully, then eat the cream out of the center before crunching into each cookie half. Today is another great excuse to tear into a package of Oreos and get all the creamy centers I can: The cookie is turning 100 years old. That’s right — this black-and-white favorite has been around since 1912.

Back when it was called the Oreo Biscuit, production of the Oreo by the National Biscuit Company (NBC) was right here in the current home of Food Network, Chelsea Market. Susan Watson, a Manager in Kraft Foods archive, explained that even though there were hundreds of National Biscuit Company cookie products, Oreo became one of their most popular items. Ads dating back to the 1920s show the cookies being pulled apart to reveal their creamy white center. Today, there are more than 21 bakeries around the world cranking out the cookies.

How are you celebrating Oreo’s 100th?

Everyday Banana Bread — Simple Scratch Cooking

by in Family, March 6th, 2012

banana bread
Every week I find myself flooded with overripe bananas since everyone in the house prefers to eat firm, barely ripe ones. The first sign of a brown spot, and they’re left to languish on the counter, eventually becoming so ripe the only purpose they serve is as incentive to bake some banana bread. I know, this doesn’t seem like a problem. Banana bread has a lot going for it. It’s easy to make because it’s a quick bread — it uses baking powder to rise, not yeast. It’s also the ultimate “waste not, want not” use of ingredients past their prime. But best of all, it can be a breakfast on the go, a tasty snack for school lunch and even play a pinch hitter come dessert time.

The real problem with having too many overripe bananas is I feel guilty making my favorite banana bread recipe twice a week. The recipe is great, but with one stick of butter in it, I decided my weekly banana bread infatuation needed some lightening up. The Brown Butter Bourbon Pecan Banana Bread has been relegated to a once a month treat. What I needed was an “everyday” banana bread recipe, one I could feel better about making, and eating on a regular basis.

Get the recipe

Parmigiano-Reggiano — Iron Chef America Ingredients

by in Shows, March 5th, 2012

parmigiano reggiano iron chef america
I am positive that just about everyone reading this post will have bought packs labeled “Parmesan” from their local supermarket. I am also sure that just about everyone will have used said Parmesan in their cooking, whether it was as the basis for a sauce or simply grated over a bowl of steaming pasta.

Unfortunately, much of what is on sale in the U.S. is mass-produced, a pale imitation of true Parmigiano-Reggiano from Northern Italy, and lacks the texture and deliciously nutty flavor of the genuine article. The good stuff may be pricey, but it is worth every penny and I really hope that Battle Parmigiano will inspire everyone to go out in search of the real deal.

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