by FN Dish Editor in View All Posts, December 24th, 2008
by Operation Foodie in View All Posts, December 23rd, 2008
My dreams of a respite from work and a day of baking were both answered on Thursday with an invitation from the FN Kitchens to help them prepare for FN’s holiday cookie party!
Sarah Copeland, the kitchens’ very own recipe developer, led a group of us away from our computer monitors in the interactive department and into a gingerbread and sugar cookie extravaganza in which used our keyboard-weary hands to mix, flour, roll and bake over 1000 cookies.
Along the way we learned some handy tips from the pros, like how the use of a triggered cookie scoop promises even sized cookies along with even baking times, ensuring that all of your cookies will turn out looking professionally made. Sarah also taught us cookie decorating 101, from which the most important takeaway is that with decorating, less is more.
We had a blast, and today the cookies were devoured eagerly by the staff here at FN Chelsea as a holiday gift from the Kitchens. I can’t wait for the next invite upstairs!
Warmest wishes and happy baking!
by FN Dish Editor in View All Posts, December 23rd, 2008
New York during the holidays has always been a delectable time of year for me. Windows sparkle with lights and ornaments, fancy mulled drinks line bar menus, and working at the Food Network is the cream cheese topping on the Red Velvet cake!
Walking through the Chelsea Market every morning, you are welcomed with the scent of freshly baked pastries, breads and cakes. While in the studio, I have the pleasure of hanging around some of the best entrees being prepared by our wonderful hosts and food stylists. The gigantic room fills with whatever is cooking and it’s heaven!
A few Saturday’s ago I was working on a new special with Tyler Florence (HINT: think Football). To my surprise he approached me with a warm bowl of his special chili!! It was in a festive green dish and garnished with care. ‘What a lucky young woman!’, I thought and thanked him up hill and down. It warmed me right up – slow cooked pork with Mexican flavors. One word: Delicious.
At the end of the long, fun day, I passed by one of my favorite wine shops. I was greeted by my friend, Vladi (the general manager), and invited in for a glass of Bordeaux he had just opened. The perfect ending to yet another exciting day at the FN Studios (regardless of it being the weekend). It just goes to show you that even if the hours are long, it is worth every simmering second!
Kendra, Operation Foodie
by FN Dish Editor in View All Posts, View Video Only, December 22nd, 2008
Wendy recently shared a bold tablescape which prompted:
Every year something goes horribly wrong and I’m left with a mis-mash of clutter on my table. You mentioned bold colors (which I LOVE) but my walls are bright yellow and orange. Is it over the top to incorporate more bold colors in my tablescape or should I go subtle? I don’t want my guests to need sunglasses but I don’t want it to look blah! ~ Robin
Here’s what Wendy shared:
While table settings should connect to the immediate environ, it’s the type of gathering that determines the “flavor” of color…
- High energy: If it’s a lively event with spicy foods and fun music, go bold!!! A tropical “bamboo” green would also be a great choice in your setting, Robyn.
- Down to earth: Neutrals or creamy textures are great for a more conversational, daytime mood.
- Tryouts: Test how your color vision works with your table and the rest of the room. Paint swatches are helpful. Or in a pinch, try book jackets, colorful clothes like sweaters and scarves, or simple objects around your home to achieve that preview.
- Start small: Still unsure? Use a touch of bold color via napkins or a table runner for a color splash with impact.
by Secretary Confidential in View All Posts, December 19th, 2008
Food Network stars tell The FN Dish what’s on their holiday wish lists!
by Food Network Kitchens in View All Posts, December 17th, 2008
Today, I weaseled my way into one of the edit rooms. “Just pretend I’m not here,” I told editor and producer extraordinaires, Jim and Jenny. They’re working on Anne Burrell’s Secrets of a Restaurant Chef. No spoiler here, but come January 17th , you’re in for a treat. Chef Burrell’s grilled pizza episode is sizzling. No major gaffes, other than the overuse of “lovely,” and a few “ums,” which probably won’t make their way to your screens.
The color coordination—all pastels with pink spoon AND rolling pin — is so sweet; you’ll get a rush before she whips out the pizza dough. However, the girly décor doesn’t keep Anne from doing the tough stuff, like opening a bottle of oil with her teeth — or actually, removing the bottle wrapper (that part might get cut).
I dug for dirt on the snappy blonde from my new peeps. I learned about Anne’s sous chef, who’s on Top Chef now, and heard big praise for the steak recipe. Evidently, Anne’s brown sugar-coated steak is pleasing to carnivores and dessert-ivores alike. So nice — Jim’s made it twice.
Before I go, a shout out for Tyler. Saw you the other day in the elevator, Mr. Florence, bundled and sniffly. You’re a trooper!
Until next time, when I visit my new BFF’s editing Sunny on Cooking for Real.
by Angela Moore in View All Posts, December 17th, 2008
Yes, that is a platinum-coated pie pan. No, you can’t bake in it.
(via the NYT)
Rupa Bhattacharya, Culinary Writer
by FN Dish Editor in View All Posts, December 17th, 2008
I know Thanksgiving 2008 is way over, but I can’t stop dreaming of the three new side dishes I cooked. They were so fabulous that I’m planning on making them again for Christmas.
I grew up in San Antonio and had two cousins from Austin visiting me in NYC this year, so I chose a menu that reflected the foods we loved on Turkey Day when we were kids in South Texas. When it came to the turkey itself, I admit I cheated. The big bird I bought from a local BBQ joint tasted just like my dad’s version, only no one had to get up at 4am to start smoking it over mesquite in the back yard. It paired perfectly with the two types of BBQ sauce I forced my cousins to smuggle from home, and it freed up my tiny Manhattan oven.
The sides were the real winners, though. I chose these three easy but truly tasty recipes.
Fennel Orange Cranberry Sauce from Dave Lieberman
I opted to grind my fennel seeds a bit with a mortar and pestle, but I wished I hadn’t. The rush of fennel when you bite into a seed is part of this recipe’s appeal, and the flavor works so well with turkey.
Twice Baked Potatoes from the FN Test Kitchens
I ran the cooked and scooped-out potatoes through my ricer to make the filling extra fluffy and smooth. Then I snuck in some extra butter and sour cream since my taters were jumbo-sized. I also trashed the tops and served them open-faced like my grandma always did.
Creamed Collard Greens from The Neelys
Follow the instructions and let the cream reduce by half. I got impatient/hungry, so the dish was a little too runny. Mea culpa.
Remember: We’ve got your back (and your sides) here at FN.com.
by Fay in View All Posts, December 17th, 2008
When people visit Food Network, they are often surprised, and I’ll venture to say disappointed, that they don’t find delicious heaps of food for the taking by our offices. I guess one can rightfully assume that one of Giada’s awesome, mouth-watering plates would just be waiting for them in a grand buffet line. Alas, this is not the case. [We do have coffee though.]
Unfortunately, we must whip up these plates of heaven on our own. And speaking of an amazing Giada plate, give her Sea Bass alla Fiorentina a try…
Full confession: I am by no means gifted in the kitchen. New husband will happily attest to this. But I recently tried out Giada’s Florentine-take on sea bass and I cannot tell a lie — it was unbelievably good. You have to try it! It’s so easy and I am now one with the beauty of canned tomatoes…and the magic of flour; a little dusting and the fish tasted just right.
Next, I’m attempting Tyler’s Ultimate Holiday meal….
Have you taken on any amazing plates lately?
~ Kristen, Programming Coordinator
PS — Wish me luck with Tyler.
by Food Network Kitchens in View All Posts, December 16th, 2008
The people populating your typical set for a Food Network show generally wouldn’t be winning a lot of fashion awards. The crew has a lot of running around to do, and let’s be honest, we didn’t get into this line of work to wear suits and skirts every day. But one notable exception to this rule could be found on the set of Ask Aida Season 2: Executive Producer Irene Wong. It doesn’t matter that the set is an obstacle course of fat cables, Irene will be wearing heels. Tall heels. I rarely seen her in pants, let alone jeans. Fabulous dresses, killer boots, hair perfectly in place. In short, Irene brings the style and puts the rest of us to shame (she’s the Susie Fogelson of the set).
As an example contrast this pic of Irene on set (pic on the left) with with a shot of a more typical wardrobe choice (pic on the right)…
Personally, I think the sneaker selections of Executive Producer Bob Larson and myself are pretty sharp and certainly practical, but I think Irene made us all feel pretty slobby that day.
The following article, about the salt cod industry in Portugal, has so many spectacular pullquotes it’s hard to choose just one.
“The greatest friend of Portugal is bacalhau,” said Fernando Santos, an officer of the Friends of Bacalhau, a club that has 46 chapters around the world, hosts salt cod lunches and distributes cod-decorated neckties, pins, baseball caps, T-shirts and flags.
Any friend of bacalhau is a friend of mine, sure. But then, a little further down, you come to this:
“Look at those loins!” Mr. Guedes Vaz said. “We do this much better than you can do it at home. We have total control.”
To prove it, Mr. Guedes Vaz has set up a small corporate dining room, where Isabel Santos, a chef with no formal training but a lot of loyalty, prepares the company’s premier frozen brand, Sr. Bacalhau (Mr. Cod), in half a dozen different ways.
“I used to make bacalhau the old-fashioned way, but since I discovered Senhor Bacalhau here, I am faithful only to him,” she said.
And it honestly just keeps getting better.
Rupa Bhattacharya, Culinary Writer