Whole Roast Chicken with Lemon and Herbs — Down-Home Comfort

by in Recipes, August 15th, 2014

Whole Roast Chicken with Lemon and HerbsA rotisserie chicken picked up on the way home from work in a mad dash into the grocery store spells convenience. It’s dinner on the table in a hurry. You can even get all-organic chickens with all-natural ingredients in some better markets. It’s good stuff. However, a home-cooked Whole Roast Chicken with Lemon and Herbs spells real down-home comfort. For all practical purposes, they are the same dish, same bird, same concept, but face it — it’s just not really the same thing. A bird in a bag is a heck of a lot better than a fast-food burger and fries, but it’s like comparing the proverbial apples and oranges — both fruit and round, but that’s about it.

There is little more that satisfies me personally than roast chicken. I love the mouthwatering aroma that fills the house, the sound of the sizzle of the juices in the pan when you open the door to baste the meat, the crackle of the golden-brown skin when the bird is carved. When I go to a world-class restaurant and I really want to see what the chef can do, I don’t order the sous vide signature dish christened with foam or the fancy-pants dish studded with truffles; I order simple, humble roast chicken.

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Could You Pick Your Favorite Beer Out of a Lineup?

by in News, August 15th, 2014

Could You Pick Your Favorite Beer Out of a Lineup?Are you particular about your beer? Loyal to a specific lager? Convinced your fave brand of beer is better than the other bottles or cans crowding the cooler? Many of us are. But do you think you could pick your preferred beer out of a lineup?

No problem, right? Don’t be so sure. A recent study showed that, in blind taste tests, consumers actually have a hard time telling apart different brands of European pale lager, the most-commonly consumed style of beer around the world.

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The Soda Fountain — Off the Shelf

by in Books, August 15th, 2014

The Soda Fountain CookbookOpening The Soda Fountain by Gia Giasullo and Peter Freeman is like taking a step back in American culinary history. The book takes you on a fascinating tour of the American soda fountain, a traditional establishment that has roots far deeper than a lot of the cola drinkers and ice cream lovers of today realize. It hits the mark of being “a slice of history with a double scoop of how-to.”

The Soda Fountain is divided into two primary sections, Stories and Recipes. The Stories chapters take you through the evolution of the soda fountain as an American culinary institution, from its first days as a pharmacy staple (yes, you read that right) through its Golden Age and into the Great Depression, right on to its second coming in small shops around the country. The stories are fun and charming, featuring tales of jazz and Prohibition. You get the sense as you flip through the pages that Giasullo and Freeman love and respect American food history as much as they appreciate a well-made ice cream float.

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World’s First Cruise for Chocoholics About to Set Sail

by , August 15th, 2014

Themed cruises have become something of a trend as of late. Ever wanted to hang out with the guy from Sugar Ray? There’s a cruise for that. Want to explore the open sea with an openly naked body? There’s a cruise for that. Now, finally, there is a cruise with the dessert fiend in mind. Introducing the world’s first chocolate-themed cruise.

Chocolate Journeys is being brought to us via a partnership between Princess Cruises and Norman Love Confections — and both companies have pulled out all the stops. Voyagers receive a chocolate pop when they board the ship, an endless supply of chocolate desserts, chocolate cocktails, lessons on how to cook with chocolate and, of course, a chocolate spa. That’s right. You can bathe in chocolate.

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What to Watch: Kid-Friendly Menus with Giada and the Season Premiere of Rachael vs. Guy: Kids Cook-Off

by in Shows, August 15th, 2014

Rachael vs. GuyIt’s a kid-friendly extravaganza this weekend on Food Network, with shows to appeal to kids of all ages, including burgeoning young chefs.

First, join Ree Drummond on The Pioneer Woman as she prepares a feast for her boys before she leaves for a trip. Next, learn how to cook with your kids from The Kitchen co-hosts.

On Sunday, Ina Garten’s planning a cheese-themed menu on Barefoot Contessa and Giada De Laurentiis is creating several recipes for her daughter, Jade, and her friends. Bobby Flay elevates standard burgers and milkshakes on Barbecue Addiction: Bobby’s Basics. Next, tune into all-new competition with the season premieres of Rachael vs. Guy: Kids Cook-Off and The Great Food Truck Race, and a new episode of Cutthroat Kitchen.

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How to Brighten Up Your Summer Party Punch

by in How-to, View All Posts, August 14th, 2014

Here’s a fun (and probably healthier) way to use mini doughnut molds. To get through these dog days of August, make pretty individual ice rings to cool down and brighten up glasses of punch at summer parties. Read more

Returning Chopped Champions Compete in First-Ever Ultimate Champions Tournament

by in Shows, August 14th, 2014

Chopped Ultimate Champions CompetingAn all-new tournament comes to Chopped, which will test a group of top former champions in a high-stakes battle. What makes this competition so interesting is that groups of professional chefs, amateur home cooks, heroes and celebrities will be competing. But the playing field is completely leveled when it comes to the Chopped kitchen, where anything can come out of those mystery baskets, oftentimes confounding the most-consummate professional. The winners of the four preliminary rounds will go on to the grand finale, where only one competitor will walk away as the grand champion and the winner of the biggest prize in Chopped history, $50,000 and a brand-new car.

Find out the rounds and who will be competing

This Birthday Cupcake Cost $900

by in News, August 14th, 2014

This Birthday Cupcake Cost $900There are all sorts of ways to show your love. One customer at Toronto’s Le Dolci bakery showed it with a $900 cupcake, presenting it to his wife in honor of her 40th birthday. Talk about sweet!

The extravagant confection was made to order, featuring some of the wife’s favorite foods and flavors. The bakery worked closely with the customer in order to get the finished product just right. The result? A gilded masterpiece featuring Kona Blue Mountain Coffee in the chocolate buttercream, sea salt from Camargue, France, organic cane sugar, Valrhona cocoa powder and Tahitian vanilla beans. The pastry cream was made with Krug Collection Brut champagne ($500-$1,500 a bottle, depending on the vintage), Rosewood Estates honey and an essence of Tahitian vanilla beans.

The butter in the frosting wasn’t just a stick from the supermarket, of course, but rather Normandy butter “made by a historic French butter cooperative,” Le Dolci owner Lisa Sanguedolce tells FN Dish. It was combined with 70 percent Amedei Italian-made chocolate, which, she says, “delivers undertones of honey, caramel, lavender, vanilla, banana and orange blossom.”

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Take Out Your Blender for 10 Refreshing Summer Soups — Summer Soiree

by in Recipes, August 14th, 2014

10 Refreshing Summer SoupsWe would never, in good conscience, recommend that you stand within 50 feet of a bowl of hot soup during the summer months. Sometimes we wouldn’t even suggest you kick on the stove at all. But that doesn’t mean the soup category is off-limits altogether. This summer, it’s all about cold soups — and we’re not just talking about trusty gazpacho, either. Use the month of August as a time for experimentation, and transform 10 types of summer produce into cool, refreshing summer soups.

1. Avocado: Creamy without cream, Chilled Avocado Soup (pictured above) is the most luxuriously velvety blend to meet your spoon, with ingredients reminiscent of guacamole, like cilantro, chiles and citrus.

2. Cucumber: Make your summer soups cool as a cucumber, with two recipes that play off the vegetable’s ultra-refreshing qualities. Chilled Cucumber Soup by Food Network Magazine incorporates yellow tomatoes and yellow peppers, while Chilled Creamy Cucumber Soup gets extra body from a helping of plain yogurt.

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