If your idea of a perfect day involves food at just about every turn, then you’re in for a treat this weekend on Food Network. On Saturday watch new episodes of The Pioneer Woman, Barefoot Contessa and Giada at Home, all of which involve a day filled with comfort foods and sweet treats. Then it’s competition time on Sunday, with a Hawaii-themed episode of Cupcake Wars (pictured above) and an episode of Worst Cooks in America that has the Boot Campers facing their biggest fear — serving food to others. Finish Sunday evening with a life-changing transformation on Restaurant: Impossible.
Ola restaurant is located at Turtle Bay Resort on the north shore of Oahu, Hawaii. Chef/owner Fred DeAngelo opened the restaurant eight years ago with his wife, Cheryl. Fred was looking for an executive chef who could relieve some of the pressure from his workload, as he has a new restaurant to run. His hope was to find a chef who could expertly work with the local island ingredients and who shares his philosophy for the restaurant, which is reflected in the name Ola, meaning “life.” Anne Burrell and the Chef Wanted team were called in to help with the search. After two tests and two dinner services, an offer was extended to Chef Casey Barnes.
Casey is an unemployed chef from Los Angeles — he actually quit his job with a Michelin-rated chef just to interview at Ola. He recently got engaged to his girlfriend and is ready to move to Hawaii to start fresh with this new job.
Having already conquered the professional kitchen as the chef-owner of two New York City restaurants — The Lamb’s Club and The National — and Kitchen Stadium as a member of the Chairman’s elite team of Iron Chefs, Geoffrey Zakarian is setting out to take over the radio airwaves, if only for just one night.
From 8pm-9pm EST tomorrow evening, Friday, March 15, Geoffrey can be heard on the SiriusXM Satellite Radio Stars Channel 107 chatting with an impressive roster of chefs, including Guy Fieri, Anne Burrell, Sunny Anderson, Andrew Zimmern, fellow Chopped judges Scott Conant and Marc Murphy, and more. These industry A-listers came together in Miami, Fla., during last month’s South Beach Wine & Food Festival, and FN Dish was on hand as the show was recorded live, poolside from The James Royal Palm Hotel.
Spring is right around the corner, and spring cleaning is synonymous with the season. If you’re starting with your kitchen, don’t forget to organize your knives, gadgets and more to keep them in tip top shape. One way to do this is to organize them in a knife block or on a magnetic knife strip. Don’t have either around? FN Dish is giving one lucky reader a chance to win a knife block.
This 17-slot Battle Station Block (pictured above) organizes all your knives and tools, and it stores them within hands reach on your counter — not in a cluttered drawer. The bottom comes equipped with five nonslip rubber feet for a sure grip on any surface.
Battle Station Block offers:
- 5 kitchen knife slots
- 8 steak knife slots
- 1 slot for a sharpener
- 1 slot for scissors
- 1 slot for a grater/peeler
- 1 slot for a meat thermometer
Instead of looking to rich, indulgent dips to pair with chips or vegetables, try making better-for-you hummus, a traditionally no-cook mixture of ground chickpeas and extra-virgin olive oil. This smooth, creamy combination takes just minutes to prepare in a blender or food processor and can be easily featured alongside salty pretzels, crispy pita wedges and fresh crudité alike. Not just for appetizers or simple snacking, however, hummus also transforms everyday sandwiches, salads and pizzas into next-level meals with little effort or time. Spread it onto bread, mix it into dressings or use it in place of sauce on pizza for a creative twist to traditional dishes. Check out Food Network’s top-five hummus recipes below for a varied roundup of classic and inspired versions of this no-fail favorite.
5. Buffalo Wing Hummus — Enjoy the flavors of Buffalo-style chicken wings without the meaty bones in this lookalike dip, boasting a combination of barbecue and hot sauces, plus a pinch of paprika for subtle spice.
4. Edamame Hummus — A key ingredient in Food Network Kitchens’ hummus is tahini, a soft sesame-seed paste that adds unbeatable silkiness to the easy recipe, ready to eat in mere minutes, thanks to timesaving frozen edamame.
What’s the next best thing you never ate?
Carob molasses. I know what you are thinking, but it’s not that weird health food chocolate substitute that made trail mixes depressing. Carob molasses is something completely different and worth seeking out. We’ve even put the molasses in baskets on Chopped. You get carob molasses from cooking the fruit of the carob pod with water, then straining and reducing it down to a crazy delicious syrup. It’s a Middle Eastern product, so if you want it, head to your nearest Middle Eastern market or look online.
Although mother-daughter duo Diane Emery and Robin Gordon had no previous experience in the restaurant industry, together they purchased Caseyville Cafe in Caseyville, Ill., more than three years ago. At one point their eatery was making enough money to simply break even with its costs, but it soon turned into a failing venture, with more than $6,000 being lost every month. Just months away from shutting down their business entirely, the ladies looked to Robert Irvine for a complete Restaurant: Impossible overhaul. It soon became clear to Robert that this “dirty, dysfunctional” space was in need of not simply an aesthetic transformation, but also vast changes to its menu and management. In two days and with only $10,000, he worked with Diane and Robin to revamp all aspects of Caseyville Cafe, which ultimately reopened with crowd-pleasing food and a roomful of satisfied customers. We checked in with Robin a few months after Robert left to find out how her business is doing today.
Since its Restaurant: Impossible debut, Caseyville Cafe has had an increase in business. Although they’re still working to manage supply costs, Robin and Diane are slowly minimizing their debt.
In the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, beer takes the kitchen spotlight each March. Even if you’re not much of a beer drinker, this sudsy ingredient adds a wonderful depth of flavor without overpowering a recipe. I love the idea of adding a splash to Corned Beef or Irish Stew, but this year my mind was set on cupcakes.
I enjoy a light lager on game day or a crisp IPA with my Friday night pizza, but, to me, stout is the ultimate treat. I’ve never been to Ireland, and I am no connoisseur when it comes to how to pour the perfect pint, but I can appreciate its deliciousness all the same. With its smooth chocolate and coffee notes, stout will be your next secret weapon in baking.
Dave Lieberman’s Chocolate Stout Cupcakes are the perfect treats to please a party crowd. The taste of stout beer is subtle but becomes delectably more noticeable with each bite. Even if you can’t distinguish the actual beer flavor, it enhances the chocolate and makes for a rich, not-too-sweet cupcake. Top it off with velvety cream cheese icing and you’ve found your pot of gold.