“This Is a Make-or-Break Moment” — Testing the Cutthroat Kitchen Sabotages

by in Shows, June 21st, 2015

“You want your flour, you want your leavener and a little bit of salt.” Those three things are what Cutthroat Kitchen food stylist Jamie Peterson says are needed in order to concoct the usual dry-ingredient mixture for waffle batter. On tonight’s all-new episode, one chef was forced to make waffles not with these traditional ingredients but with a platter of junk food, including butter crackers, gummy candies and potato chips; sure enough, those three items weren’t guaranteed. Before Alton Brown could auction off this diabolical challenge to the competitors, the culinary team had to test it, and what Jamie found was shocking.

Tackling the flour component was easy enough for Jamie — just grinding the butter cookies with butter powder. But making a leavener is far trickier. “I’m going to take the egg white powder and reconstitute it into egg whites, and then try to whip it into a meringue to make it become the leavening agent we need,” he explained. “This is a make-or-break moment.” Sure enough, it worked, and he achieved stiff peaks after just a bit of whisking. “You’re a waffle! I made you from nothing,” Jamie jokingly and excitedly told the waffle after lifting the top of the waffle machine to reveal an ideally formed waffle. He took a bite and was quick to boast, “First of all, that’s delicious.”

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6 Ways to Fill Up on Watermelon

by in Recipes, June 21st, 2015

Watermelon Breakfast PopsNothing says summer like biting into a ripe, juicy slice of watermelon, particularly when it’s fresh off the rind. Though the purists may say there’s no better way to eat watermelon, we’d argue that it’s time to get your fill of this in-season fruit by incorporating it into all of your meals. Consider this your personal watermelon bucket list: six recipes for anytime of day.

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Pin of the Week — Blueberry Cheesecake Galette

by in Community, June 21st, 2015

Blueberry Cheesecake GaletteCheesecake or blueberry pie? In this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, Food Network Magazine solves the question. A mash-up of those two classic desserts, this rustic tart is a summer go-to because it features seasonal fruit. Start by making dough in the food processor by combining dry ingredients and diced butter — just as you would for a pie. While the dough chills and firms up, make a quick filling with plenty of blueberries and a cream cheese mixture that gets a hint of warmth from fresh nutmeg. Layer the cream cheese and filling in the dough, and then fold the edges over the filling. Brush the sides with a beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse sugar to achieve a gorgeous, lightly golden color when baked.

For more summer recipes, check out Food Network’s Let’s Get Seasonal: Summer! board on Pinterest.

Get the recipe: Blueberry Cheesecake Galette (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine

New Barbecue Wisdom: Rest Is Best

by in News, June 21st, 2015

New Barbecue Wisdom: Rest Is BestShh … don’t wake the barbecue. It’s resting.

While the conventional wisdom used to be that the ideal time to enjoy the smoky goodness of barbecued meat was right when it came off the pit — avoiding the mushiness or drying that could result from various methods of “holding” it — there’s a new theory gaining traction among pitmasters. NPR reports that allowing barbecued meat to “rest,” if done correctly, actually improves its flavor.

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Google Is Coming to Count the Calories in Your Instagram Food Pics

by in News, June 20th, 2015

Google Is Coming to Count the Calories in Your Instagram Food PicsYour days of sharing and gaping at food photos on social media while remaining blissfully unaware of how many calories are lurking in those beautiful meals may be numbered. Google is working on an artificial intelligence tool that will analyze your food pictures and estimate how many calories are being served up on your plate.

The tool, Im2Calories, which was unveiled at a “deep learning” summit in Boston last month, will cast an eyeball (or whatever the high-tech AI equivalent of an eyeball is) over that grainy Instagram photo (high-res not required) of your burger, breakfast or baked good — along with accompanying sides — and use algorithms to calculate the number of calories you’re about to enthusiastically consume, Popular Science reports.

Terrifying, perhaps, but that may be part of the point. Im2Calories’ creator, Google research scientist Kevin Murphy, says his aim is not to shame people, but rather to inform them so they can make decisions about the foods they eat (and feel compelled to share on social media) with complete caloric information.

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Simple Snacking: 3 New Ways to Crush the Chip Game

by in Recipes, Shows, June 20th, 2015

Buffalo Potato ChipsIn the spirit of Father’s Day this weekend, The Kitchen co-hosts shined a light on one of Dad’s all-time favorite pastimes — snacking — on this morning’s episode. While bags of cheese-flavored chips and salty pretzels are surely tried-and-true classics, you can easily dress up these go-to bites and turn them into all-new munchies.

You know Dad loves Buffalo chicken wings, so he’ll surely be wowed by these Buffalo Potato Chips too. The secret ingredient? A mild hot sauce drizzle, which clings to ruffled potato chips. For an extra level of flavor, add blue cheese for a welcome bite.

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6 Slab Pies to Save Your Cookout Quandaries

by in Recipes, June 20th, 2015

There’s nothing quite like a sweet, juicy fruit pie in the summertime when an abundance of berries, stone fruits (see: Peach Streusel Slab Pie, above) and melons are at their peak. And slab pies are great for feeding a crowd — or at least a crowd of eight. If you’re entertaining a larger group, dessert can quickly become an afterthought, what with all the appetizers, side dishes, drinks and grilled mains to coordinate.

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Designer Creates Unusual Art from Everyday Foods

by in News, June 19th, 2015

Designer Creates Unusual Art from Everyday FoodsBroccoli can be beautiful and sweet. An orange can be lovely and reassuring. In the hands of Danling Xiao, foods like these are all that and more: Two small florets become a couple of hedgehogs hanging out. A simple citrus yields a doorway that opens onto a floating peel staircase and becomes a lesson in unrushed romance.

For the past three years, Xiao, a Sydney-based designer and digital strategist, has been transforming food into art and posting photos of her charming creations on Instagram. She calls her project Mundane Matters, but the images of, just for instance, a bench crafted from a zucchini, a cauliflower sheep and a toaster made of bread (how meta) are really anything but mundane.

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