Side Dish: More Food on the Web

by in View All Posts, January 11th, 2011
Know Your Cheeses

That’s The Cheddar: Since everything tastes better with cheese, spread the word about how these 8 popular cheeses got their names. [mentalfloss.com via eatocracy.cnn.com]

Food Pyramid Controversy: A nonprofit doctors’ group is suing the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health for failing to recognize a vegetarian alternative to the traditional food pyramid. The organization claims that the pyramid “recommends meat and dairy products despite overwhelming evidence that these foods are unnecessary and unhealthy.” [latimes.com via newyork.grubstreet.com]

Really Really Old Wine Discovered: What’s thought to be the earliest example of a wine-producing facility has been found in Armenia, the BBC reports. Scientists found grapes and dozens of dried vines from 6,000 years ago in one of cave, as well as a basin where workers could stomp the grapes with their feet. [bbc.co.uk]

What All Restaurant Websites Share: Is this the real reason we get so excited to go out to eat? And here we thought it was because it meant no cleanup. [mcsweenys.net]

Here’s our round-up of food news, trends and happenings across the web. Check back for more, and tell us what else you’re loving in the comments.

Worst Cooks Exit Interview: Anthony Scinto

by in Shows, January 10th, 2011

After his elimination in the second episode, Anthony went home and practiced his omelets.

Why do you need or want to be on Worst Cooks in America?
The inability, lack of confidence/knowledge, and creativity to make anything that I or anyone I know would want to eat makes me the worst cook.

What was the most valuable tip or piece of advice that you learned from Chef Anne?
Knife techniques.

Will you continue to work on your culinary skills?
I will and need to.

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Worst Cooks, Episode 2: He Said, She Said

by in Shows, January 10th, 2011

Anne and Robert are happy to be on the farm...but not so excited to taste the recruits' omelets.

After each elimination on Worst Cooks in America this season, chefs Anne Burrell and Robert Irvine share their candid impressions of the booted recruits with the FN Dish. This week, they bid farewell to Jeff from Robert’s Team and Anthony from Anne’s Team.

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Worst Cooks Exit Interview: Jeff Longcor

by in Shows, January 10th, 2011
After the first Skill Drill, Jeff quickly became known as the guy who tore chicken with his hands.

Why did you need or want to be on Worst Cooks in America?
My last girlfriend stormed out when I tried to serve her pasta for the sixth night in a row. Eventually she started making me do all the dishes and clean the floors instead of making meals. When I go on outdoor trips, my friends will actually starve themselves instead of eating my food. I mean, that’s just dangerous, when starving people won’t eat your food even when their life depends on it. I owe it to them to learn how to cook a decent meal and I owe it to myself to improve enough to avoid embarrassing myself in front of friends, family members, coworkers, and cute girls.

What was the most valuable tip/piece of advice that you learned from Chef Robert?
The chefs forced us to prepare everything in advance to make sure all the ingredients were ready before we needed them. This high level of forethought and preparation is a great strategy for approaching any challenge in life.

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Happy Birthday, Elvis!

by in View All Posts, January 8th, 2011
Happy Birthday, Elvis!
Elvis Waffles - Image Courtesy Food Network Magazine

Happy Birthday, Elvis! The groundbreaking crooner would be 76 today. To celebrate, we’re breaking out the sideburns, some records and a few of his favorite foods. Serve these meals fit for the King of Rock and Roll all day long.

Breakfast: A Classic Combo
It’s no secret that Elvis loved what’s now a classic combo: peanut butter and bananas!  Aaron McCargo, Jr turns the classic sandwich into breakfast fare with these Elvis Pancakes: two buckwheat pancakes filled with…well, you know.   Or, make these snack-perfect Elvis Waffles from Food Network Magazine (pictured above.)

Elvis Waffles
Aaron McCargo, Jr's Elvis Pancakes

Lunch and Dinner: Southern Fare
As a good Southern boy, Elvis loved down-home classics, like this straight-from-Graceland recipe for Country Fried Steak and Gravy.  And don’t forget the barbecue  — Memphis-style, of course.  Pat and Gina Neely know a thing or two about Tennessee barbecue; make their tried-and-true recipe for Hickory-Smoked Ribs tonight.

Neelys Ribs
The Neelys' Hickory-Smoked Beef and Pork Ribs

Sweet Tooth: Elvis-Themed Desserts
Don’t forget dessert! These banana-flavored cupcakes from a Cupcake Wars winner are decked out with chocolate and peanut butter frosting. Top each one with a mini-electric guitar and get ready to start humming. Or, mix up a decadent chocolate-banana milkshake.

The King of Cupcakes
The King of Cupcakes

Here’s hoping Elvis’s favorite foods get your friends and family, ahem, all shook up!  What are you making to commemorate the King?

Sandra’s Saturday Savings: Choose Wisely

by in Shows, January 8th, 2011

Sandra Lee Every Saturday morning in January, Sandra Lee teams up with the FN Dish to bring you budget-friendly tips for creating delicious dishes and meals for your family. From the supermarket to the stove, she’ll help you stretch every dollar and minute.

This week, Sandra shares five surprising grocery store swaps that will save you money and time.

1. 80% lean beef costs nearly half the price of 93% lean beef.

2. Using spicy brown mustard instead of Dijon will save you 53%.

3. Use conventional brown rice over instant brown rice and save 82%.

4. Canola oil is 70% less expensive than peanut oil, so try that for frying.

5. Buy sliced mushrooms. They cost the same as whole mushrooms and you save time by not slicing.

Want more tips? Sandra’s shows are full of ‘em. Catch Money Saving Meals on Saturdays at 9am/8c and Semi-Homemade Cooking on Sundays at 11:30am/10:30c.

Healthy Inspiration: Weekend TV Preview

by in View All Posts, January 7th, 2011
Crispy Baked Fried Chicken
Cat Cora's Baked "Fried" Chicken

We’re one full week into the new year, and at Food Network, that means that our chefs are ready to show you how to cook up light, healthy and still-flavorful dishes that will have you eating better all year long. (Start now with Cat Cora’s Baked “Fried” Chicken, pictured above.)

All day Saturday and Sunday, tune in for a get-healthy block of your favorite cooking shows. Here’s a preview of the mouthwatering, better-for-you shows, and a few recipes to tide you over.

Healthy how-to highlights »

Twitter Recap: What Foods Do You Want to Learn to Cook in 2011?

by in News, Recipes, View All Posts, January 7th, 2011
Tweet, tweet! Let us know what you're thinking, we are listening!

The new year brings a fresh start and new challenges — especially in the kitchen. We asked you via Twitter what recipes you wanted to learn to cook this year, and there were a few common themes. Perhaps you’ve stumbled on some 2011 cooking trends — could 2011 be the year of Pad Thai? Risotto? Here are a few of our favorite tweets, and some recipes to get started on your culinary goals. Read more

Get Healthy in 2011 With Bobby’s Help

by in View All Posts, January 5th, 2011
Get Healthy With Bobby Flay
Get Healthy With Bobby's Tips

You know the drill: New year, new you.  But why go to extremes in January, then leave your goals in the dust before Valentine’s Day? This year, make small changes instead of over-the-top resolutions to stay healthy all year long. We chatted with Bobby Flay about how he changed his habits to lose weight and feel better.  Get his start-the-year-right advice, then check back here and on our Healthy Eats blog for new tips every Wednesday.

Why did you decide to change your eating habits?

I just felt like I could be in better shape. While I wasn’t overweight, I felt like I needed to get my body back into shape and to be healthier. I knew that when I had been healthier in the past, I felt better about myself and about my day-to-day.  It helped my day-to-day happiness.

How did you accomplish your fitness goals?

A couple ways. Hard work at the gym, and on the road, so to speak, you know, running. And then just making some smart choices when it came to eating. They’re both important and you need to do both. Anybody will tell you the same thing, to exercise and eat well. It sounds like a cliche, but if everybody did that, we’d have a much healthier country.

What’s your personal philosophy on healthy eating?

It’s more about what not to do as opposed to what to do. Here’s what I do from day to day:

  • Avoid processed foods. I don’t eat fast foods or processed foods, when I can help it.  Instead, I eat things that have been prepared by hand.  Even if it’s in a diner, I know what it’s something that has been prepared by a person as opposed to a machine.
  • Nix huge portions. I don’t eat as much as I used to.  I try to eat about 2/3 of what’s in front of me when I go to a restaurant, and about the same amount at home.
  • Make every calorie count. I don’t eat just to eat things. If something doesn’t taste really good, I won’t eat it. I want my calories to count.

What are some techniques and tips for making healthy meals that are full of flavor?

You know, fat is always tasty. Cream, butter, all of that tastes good. So without those ingredients, you have to use great sources of flavor.  I use a lot of chipotles, a lot of Mediterranean ingredients, fresh herbs, dried spices, and savory things like onions and garlic that have lots of flavor but very little fat. See Bobby’s top-5 healthy ingredients >>

For hundreds more healthy appetizers, weeknight meals, desserts and healthy tips from Bobby, Giada, Alton and more, visit FoodNetwork.com/Health.

Cupcake Wars: Tree Tripping

by in Shows, January 5th, 2011
Candace and her fellow judges are ready to taste some cupcakes. After lots of hiccups this week, one baker hit his stride.

Cupcake Wars judge Candace Nelson is the founder and pastry chef of Sprinkles Cupcakes, the world’s first cupcake bakery. She joins us on the FN Dish each week to recap all the sweet details of the competition from her seat at the judges’ table. Here’s what she had to say about last night’s episode, Tree People.

Wow, this week’s Tree People episode tripped a lot of people up! From Sara’s broken batter to Stephen’s mixed up frostings, there was upset after upset.

Let’s start with Tonnie. He was the first to go in round one, but felt very confident that he had the best tasting cupcake. And guess what? He was right! Tonnie’s carrot cupcake was delicious, but we couldn’t find a single one of the challenge ingredients! And he wasn’t alone…no one was immune to the missing flavors. All three of the remaining contestants’ cupcakes had no maple flavor!

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