One Recipe, Two Meals: Southwest-Style Chili

by in Family, Recipes, February 2nd, 2016

One Recipe, Two Meals: Southwest-Style ChiliOnce a month Bev Weidner, of Bev Cooks fame and the mom of adorable twin littles, stops by to share an easy, one-two approach to dinner to keep everyone happy: Start by making one classic recipe for the kids in the house, then dress up that same dish with bold flavors for the adults.

You hardly hear anyone say, “I love this time of year!” in regard to winter. Especially that dreadful stint from January to March when you feel Old Man Winter won’t ever pack his stupid bags and leave you the heck alone. And I’ll tell you, I’m in that boat. I usually loathe the wintertime. But I’m trying to be better about my grumpy bump winter ‘tude and suck it up. Because you know what? CHILI.

You can’t go wrong with a good ol’ chili, ya know? While there are 15 million versions of chili out there, I wanted to keep this one classic on the flavor front, but give it a little twist for the adults. Think spicier. Definitely spicier.

The chili starts off the same for everyone: browned seasoned beef, a dose of veggies, black beans, tomatoes and a little bit of tomato sauce (to thicken). At this point the kids’ version is ready! It’s chunky and simple. Serve it with cornbread and a mountain of shredded cheddar. I’m almost sure your littles will praise your name for the rest of ever.

Now, to up the ante for the adults, I added a bit of beer, beef stock, more chili powder, a minced jalapeno and brown sugar to round it out. It’s got a KICK, yo. And it’s a bit soupier than the kids’ version, but I prefer that in a chili. I like the beans to swim a little — practice their backstroke. Do you? That’s right, you do.

We’re kind of liking this time of year now, aren’t we?

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The All-Nachos Restaurant You Never Knew You Needed

by in News, Restaurants, February 1st, 2016

The All-Nachos Restaurant You Never Knew You NeededEvery so often the world brings you something that satisfies a deep need you had no idea you had. Like, for instance, delivering fabulous, easily returnable shoes to your door. Or, perhaps, providing you with a restaurant exclusively devoted to nachos.

Actually, we can thank the same man for both of those things. Nick Swinmurn, the guy who launched Zappos — and then left his job as the shoe e-tailer’s CEO in 2006, three years before the company was sold to Amazon for $1.2 billion — has just opened an all-nacho restaurant in California, with an eye toward rolling it out to other regions, should the idea prove successful.

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Winter Layered Salad with Beets and Brussels Sprouts — Meatless Monday

by in Recipes, February 1st, 2016

Winter Layered Salad with Beets and Brussels SproutsTake it from the chefs in Food Network Kitchen: When it comes to salad, “Layered is the new chopped.” And when it comes to building a satisfying bowl of greens, it’s all about keeping you interested in what’s on your plate — or, in this case, what’s in the bowl. Think beyond lettuce and dressing — but don’t lose sight of them — and add bright pops of colorful ingredients, add-ins with plenty of texture, and a mix of fruit and vegetables. To keep the visual appeal in play, try layering all of the ingredients to show off each one’s distinct look.

Stacked with a whopping seven ingredients, not including the Dijon-laced vinaigrette, Food Network Kitchen’s Winter Layered Salad with Beets and Brussels Sprouts offers the best in seasonal fare, including juicy pink grapefruits, as well as hearty pearled barley to keep you full. “We love the tender-chewy barley, but it can be swapped out for your favorite whole grain, like brown rice or quinoa,” the chefs in Food Network Kitchen note. They add, however, “Don’t skip the walnuts — the toasty-nutty little guys are our favorite part.”

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Arnold’s Guide to Creating “Love Bug” Moments at Home

by in Entertaining, Holidays, February 1st, 2016

Arnold’s Guide to Creating A handful of holidays require pulling out all the stops — elaborate menus, fabulous tablescapes, special gifts and wearing your good suit. And though I normally encourage playing with your food and exploring new culinary adventures, sometimes during these special times, like Valentine’s Day, a few practical tips and help from outside sources can calm the nerves, relieve the pressure, and allow you to stop and smell the roses.

I’m not trying to keep you from busting out the souffle pan, roasting rack and Chateau Lafite. If you are an ambitious domestic diva who enjoys the thrill of a party-hosting challenge, by all means, go for broke. But if not, it’s totally OK. Working within your technical and financial means with a few subtle personal touches will do the trick, especially on this heart-filled day. Here are a few creative and approachable Valentine’s Day ideas that are sure to spark a romantic “love bug” moment.

Private Party of Two
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Ted Allen Is Working Late on Cutthroat Kitchen — Alton’s After-Show

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, January 31st, 2016

Fresh off the chopping block, Ted Allen joined the ranks of eviliciousness tonight when he stopped by for his first-ever turn as a Cutthroat Kitchen guest judge. The Chopped judge is used to watching chef competitors try their hands at downright oddball ingredients in their mystery baskets, but on Cutthroat Kitchen, he had no knowledge of chefs’ struggles with sabotages — until he experienced them for himself on the After-Show.

Alton Brown and Ted faced off in prepping — what else but — a chopped salad, which was the Round 1 dish of the day. And in true evilicious fashion, they could use only garden tools for their utensils. “Oh, no. Oh, no,” Ted said as he learned of the sabotage. He ultimately chose to work with the weed whacker in his mini battle with Alton, who was left to use a tiller to prep his salad. “Look at that. That’s gorgeous,” Ted proclaimed after successfully shredding lettuce with the weed whacker, though he found out later that the device “doesn’t work as well on the cucumber.” He admitted, “I don’t think I’m going to get an A+ in weed-whacker knife skills on that one.” Though Alton appeared to struggle a bit when it came time to chop a red pepper, he managed to serve a completed salad to a Bob, all while Ted was still working his way through ingredients.

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One-on-One with the Latest Recruit Eliminated from the Blue Team — Worst Cooks in America

by in Shows, January 31st, 2016

Blue TeamThis season on Worst Cooks in America, 14 new hapless home cooks have joined the ranks to be mentored by chefs Tyler Florence and Anne Burrell. Split into the Blue Team and the Red Team, the recruits face new cooking challenges every week, gathering new cooking skills until just two finalists remain to face off in the last cook-off. That winner will walk away with $25,000 in cash, and his or her mentor will win bragging rights. Unfortunately, every week the two lowest-scoring recruits will be kicked out of Boot Camp. They lose the chance to win the prize money, but they leave with new skills learned from their mentors.

Every Sunday night, FN Dish has the exclusive interviews with the eliminated recruits, one from the Red Team and one from the Blue Team.

Find out who on the Blue Team went home

One-on-One with the Latest Recruit Eliminated from the Red Team — Worst Cooks in America

by in Shows, January 31st, 2016

Red TeamThis season on Worst Cooks in America, 14 new hapless home cooks have joined the ranks to be mentored by chefs Tyler Florence and Anne Burrell. Split into the Blue Team and the Red Team, the recruits face new cooking challenges every week, gathering new cooking skills until just two finalists remain to face off in the last cook-off. That winner will walk away with $25,000 in cash, and his or her mentor will win bragging rights. Unfortunately, every week the two lowest-scoring recruits will be kicked out of Boot Camp. They lose the chance to win the prize money, but they leave with new skills learned from their mentors.

Every Sunday night, FN Dish has the exclusive interviews with the eliminated recruits, one from the Red Team and one from the Blue Team.

Find out who on the Red Team went home

Brownie Tart — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, January 31st, 2016

Brownie TartLove it or hate it, Valentine’s Day is just a few weeks away, which can mean one of two things, depending on how you feel about this day devoted to romance. Either you’re smitten with the idea of spoiling your significant other, in which case you’ll want to make him or her this over-the-top-decadent Pin of the Week, or you’re determined to look the other way about this holiday and focus on something else, like this Pin of the Week. Ina Garten’s top-rated dessert is ideal both as an extra-special treat for your sweetie — and as an indulgent treat to gift yourself. This gooey, rich showstopper boasts all the fudginess of a brownie but the thickness and shape of a tart.

For more sweet-tooth-satisfying recipes, visit Food Network’s Let’s Celebrate: Valentine’s Day board on Pinterest. Check out these past fan-favorite pins for more recipe inspiration.

Get the Recipe: Brownie Tart

Chefs’ Picks: Favorite Big-Game Snacks

by in Restaurants, January 30th, 2016

harissa wings

There’s no bigger American sporting event — or advertising bonanza — than that big, star-studded extravaganza at the end of football season. Watching so much on-the-field action, viewers need proper sustenance. So we turned to five top chefs to dish on their personal Super Bowl food favorites. Read more

The Busy Parents’ Guide to Cooking with Kids

by in Family, Recipes, January 30th, 2016

Taco PocketsOne of the most-important life skills I’ll ever teach my kids will be about food: how to prepare fresh dishes that nourish their bodies and, with any luck, taste good too! And since cooking with kids (like any task) takes longer than doing it by yourself, we’ve put together these basic recipes complete with starter tasks designated by age. Building confidence in the kitchen can turn into a lifelong habit that will serve everyone well … especially if the kids start making meals themselves! Let’s get started.

Taco Pockets (pictured above)
One part burger, one part taco, Rachael Ray’s 5-star recipe delivers a hearty dinner with all the Mexican flavors kids love.

Kids: Fry turkey patties, cook tortillas
Preschoolers and Toddlers: Measure out spices, assemble lettuce, tomatoes and cheese on “pockets”

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