Susie’s vlog response to your Episode 7 questions is now posted! Go to: Susie’s Answers – Episode 7
Want to know what Susie really thought about The Next Food Network Star, Episode 7? Now you can ask her!
Susie will pick a few of the best questions entered in the comment section of this post and answer you directly via vlog next Friday, July 24.
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 1
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 2
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 3
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 4
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 5
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 6
- Watch Susie’s Answers – Episode 7
It’s road trip time! We happened to get our paws on some tickets and hotel accommodations to The Food Network Southern Food & Wine Festival at Gaylord Opryland in Nashville, TN. So enter our “Photo Caption This” contest here on FNDish.com, and get together a road trip for July 31/August 1 (or if you live in or around Nashville, TN then you’re already good to go)!
Photo Caption THIS:
Here’s how you play:
Take a long, hard look at the picture above. Write an original and creative photo caption for the image, and enter it in the comments section of this post. A little humor doesn’t hurt either! We’ll pick one (1) winner next Thursday, July 23 (at which point we’ll ask you to fill out an entry form). You are eligible if you: a) can travel to Nashville, TN on either July 31st or August 1st AND b) are 21 years of age or older. (See full contest rules here).
Here’s the PRIZE PACKAGE:
One (1) night accommodations (double occupancy) at Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, TN, on July 31 or August 1, 2009
Two (2) tickets to a cooking seminar with Bobby and Jamie Deen (Friday, 7/31) or The Neelys (Saturday, 8/1)
Two (2) tickets to the festival exhibit hall featuring food and wine vendors, food samplings, cooking competitions, kids’ area, wine tastings and more!
By submitting a comment on this post you agree to these contest rules.
Year after year, cucumbers have been the most dependable and prolific plants in my garden, making them an easy sell for me each spring. This year, I got so carried away with tomatoes and peppers, I almost forgot them, until my friends from Teich Garden Systems (who build our Good Food Gardens) gave me an heirloom pickling cucumber plant. I almost forgot them again until this morning, when I found the plant cleverly creeping up the legs of an old-cast-iron trellis, with two chubby cucumbers hanging heavily from its vines. These first cucumbers mark the glorious beginning of weeks upon weeks of green, as well as meals and menus inspired by their vibrant green skin.
Best picked when evenly green, firm and crisp, cucumbers should be eaten as soon after picking as possible, when their cells are bursting with water. It’s that crisp edge that makes them so refreshing raw, dipped in hummus, tossed into a Greek salad, or sliced (any size, skin on) with lemons in ice water, a spa trick that’s easy to adopt at home.
They are also the inspiration behind three of my favorite summer foods: chilled cucumber soup; pickles; and tzatziki, a garlicky yogurt-based cucumber dip that’s perfect with pita and as a topping for lamb burgers, gyros, or kebabs.
And if you happen to have a garden bursting with green, or a good farmers’ market nearby, take the color and run with it with a summer supper made of tzatziki with grilled flatbread, pesto stuffed into grilled arctic char, a summer squash carpaccio, and a peppermint and lime herb refresher. Bon Appetit!
Sarah Copeland, Recipe Developer and Good Food Gardens spokesperson
P.S. If you didn’t get your cucumber plants in yet, it’s okay to plant some now for a fall harvest. Cucumbers grow quickly and like lots of space, sun, and water, so give them room to grow either out (at least two feet apart) or up (they work well when trellised or allowed to creep up a link fence) and keep the soil moist.
You guys really went all out for our Bobby Flay limerick contest! We recieved over 300 entries on FNDish.com and Facebook.com/FoodNetwork. It was a hard choice, but below are the three submissions that stood out to us:
#1 – Jeremy found our FN Dish contest on Facebook and submitted this witty limerick:
There once was a cow who was stricken
With the need to make us eat more chicken
But one fateful day
The cow met Bobby Flay
And now she thinks beef’s finger-lickin’!
#2 – We felt that Karen captured the soul of Bobby’s burger outlook:
“A burgers just a burger” you’ll say
Until you’ve found Bobby Flay.
The meat you’ll be grilling
And the fixins’ make them thrilling
“A burgers just a burger? – Not Today!”
#3 – Ah, the Sherwood family. Their full-family participation (mother, father and daughter) really impressed us. Here are four of the twenty limericks they submitted, starting with Sherwood Father, Terry, after he apparently realized his wife was spending all day coming up with limericks for our contest:
There once was a blogger named Rose,
Who obsessively tried to compose,
Five limericks a day
About Bobby Flay,
Will she win only Food Network knows!
My husband thinks he’s the grill master,
But Bobby Flay cooks so much faster.
He grills meat with heat
And his burgers are treats.
My spouse is becoming a true bastard.
There once was a husband and wife
Who sat up all night in strife.
With no time to play,
It was limericks All Day!
Obviously, they had no life.
- Laira (Sherwood Daughter)
Thank you FN for all of the fun.
We’ve played the game and had a good run.
It’s Bobby’s last wish
That we should finish.
Flay’s burgers have certainly won!
- Terry and Rose
Hope everyone had as much fun writing these limericks as we did reading them. Should we do more contests like this? Shout out your suggestions!
In promos, sometimes our chefs share the spotlight with surprising co-stars: the graphics. The Viva Daisy! spot is no exception, as we’re hoping you’ve already seen on-air. I casually stalked Senior Designer Christopher Clarke and Writer/Producer Steve Tardio paparazzi-style from start to finish as they collaborated and created this promotional piece. Now I am excited to share my roomy front-row seat with you…
Christopher and Steve first brainstorm graphics ideas while reading over the script. The overall concept they developed highlights Daisy’s “spice” and “flourish” through the dynamic movement of the camera, as it twists and turns through Daisy’s world. Christopher creates the graphics portion of the promo, and Steve pulls show footage from Viva Daisy! to incorporate into the spot.
Between this video from the NYTimes (embedding is needlessly difficult, but I promise it’s worth the click-through) and the ongoing confirmation hearings, I’m starting to realize that Otto von Bismarck was right.
Then again, the last time that happened, things didn’t end terribly well…
Rupa Bhattacharya, Culinary Writer
Media-wise, it’s been a rough couple of weeks for the organics industry. Earlier this month a prominent LA Times food journalist confessed, “I don’t believe in organic,” arguing that flavor–most reliably found in farmers’ markets–should trump all other considerations for conscientious food shoppers. Fair enough perhaps. And in and of itself, the article is of limited significance. But its timing is telling and, to my mind, reflective of the declining status of organics in general and of the federal organic label in particular. My sense of this was solidified a few days later when the Washington Post ran a front page report raising questions about the integrity of the federal organics program, which oversees the federal organic labels.
The report depicts the program as a mire of lobbyist-friendly administrators, eroding standards, and lax oversight. Specifically, it details friction between the National Organic Standards Board, which controls decisions on which synthetics are permitted under the organic label, and the National Organic Program, which administers the standards. In recent years, according to the WaPo, the Program has taken it upon itself do some standard-setting of its own and to selectively enforce standards established by the Board.
Critics charge that the Program has been all too easily swayed by industry lobbyists who’ve pushed to loosen regulations by expanding the list of allowable synthetics in processed organics. Federal administrators counter they’re removing obstacles to the growth of the organics industry.
Is any of this really news? Certainly, as Samuel Fromartz, author of ‘Organics, Inc.,’ points out in a thought-provoking blog post, a fundamental tension ‘between those who have always sought to expand the industry and those who seek a more purist vision’ has underlain the entire history of efforts to standardize and enshrine organics into law.
But there is a definite sense that, under the pressure of explosive growth, this tension is building, perhaps toward a breaking point–something recognized by the standards board’s chairman, Jeff Moyer, who observes, “As the organic industry matures, it is becoming increasingly more difficult to find a balance between the integrity of the word ‘organic’ and the desire for the industry to grow.”
Fromartz seems to believe that the real story is the question of what happens to organics after this breaking point is reached. As he sees it two outcomes are likely, both dead-ends of a sort:
“If synthetics are taken out, even over a sunset period…organic processed foods would fade off the shelves. Maybe that’s not a bad thing, but the organic industry would be a lot smaller. If, on the other hand, too many synthetics are let in, and we start getting more organic junk food with a long list of unpronounceable ingredients, that will spell the end of organics too.”
The odds of the latter strike me as vastly more likely. The organic industry has been so thoroughly integrated into (some argue co-opted by) the larger food industry that it now has tremendous weight to throw around in Washington. If the industry wants to loosen definitions of ‘organic,’ chances are definitions will loosen. If, on the other hand, the industry fails to get its desired changes, chances are it will find a work-around by creating cheaper alternatives that siphon off organic’s cache without being constrained by organic regulations–Horizon Organics’ recent introduction of a ‘Natural’ line suggests this process is now under way. Both courses of action carry tremendous risks for the industry in terms of diminishing the value of the organic label in the eyes of consumers. The LATimes article, among other things, seems symptomatic of this spreading sense of diminished value. If Fromartz is right, organics may well be approaching a tipping point.
Jonathan Milder, Research Librarian