Testing the Cutthroat Sabotages: From Cooking Station to Shopping Cart

by in Shows, April 13th, 2014


With one swift auction and a bit of bad luck, Cutthroat Kitchen competitors could have all of their seemingly necessary tools and food products taken away from them and replaced with inferior items. From salt and knives to the stove and pans, nothing is safe in Cutthroat Kitchen, including the chefs’ workstations. On tonight’s all-new episode, contestants bid on a game-changing sabotage in Round 2′s enchilada challenge that forces one person to abandon his or her standard setup and fashion another one using a stocked toolbox. The catch? The workspace, heat source and cooktop must be built in and confined to a shopping cart. Was this challenge taking the competition too far and asking too much of one person during a 30-minute challenge? It turns out that the answer is no, as Food Network’s culinary team vetted and approved this sabotage prior to air.

Click the play button on the video above to watch the test unfold and see how one grocery store staple became a fully equipped cook space.
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Chilled Peanut Chicken Noodle Salad — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, April 13th, 2014

Chilled Peanut Chicken Noodle SaladOne single ingredient, peanut butter, does double duty in this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week: It goes into the chicken’s poaching liquid, which then gets boiled down and chilled to create the dressing for this refreshing salad hearty enough for a main dish.

For more recipes inspired by Chopped, visit Food Network’s Let’s Watch: Chopped board on Pinterest, and for even more, browse through a selection of recipes from The Chopped Cookbook.

Get the Recipe: Chilled Peanut Chicken Noodle Salad

Ted Allen, Host of America’s Best Cook, Reveals His Take on the New Series

by in View All Posts, April 12th, 2014

Ted AllenFN Dish is counting down until the premiere of America’s Best Cook on Sunday at 9|8c. On the new show, four Food Network chefs representing the four regions of the United States mentor teams of exceptional home cooks in a competition to find America’s best cook. The winner walks away with the title and $50,000 in prize money. But which region will that winner be from? It could be North, South, East or West. The final result will be a testament to the mentor who coached the winner. Ahead of the premiere, FN Dish spoke with the show’s host, Ted Allen, to find out his take on the competition.

As the host of Chopped, Ted Allen gets to see professional chefs enter the heat of the competition, but on America’s Best Cooks, it’s all about the home cooks. Amateurs who have proven they’re the best home cooks in the nation will enter the competition for a chance to be chosen and mentored by one of four Food Network chefs. According to Ted, each team will show a different dynamic and each mentor will have a strategy — some similar, some a bit different. As the host, he has a unique point of view: He gets to see everything that happens on all four teams.

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5 Deliciously Unleavened Passover Desserts

by in Recipes, View All Posts, April 12th, 2014

Aside from the old reliables — always-addictive chocolate matzo brittle, from-scratch coconut macaroons and flourless chocolate cake — Passover desserts are usually forgettable. Attempts at kosher-for-Passover versions of cookies and brownies never turn out very well, and those sugared jelly candies always make an appearance but remain untouched on the Seder dessert spread. Fortunately, we rounded up five decadent new desserts that are worth making whether you’re observing Passover or not.

Lemon-Coconut Matzo Jelly Roll
This flour-free, non-dairy dessert will make an impressive showing when sliced on the post-Seder dessert table. Read more

What Online Restaurant Reviews Reveal About Those Who Write Them

by in News, April 12th, 2014

RestaurantOnline reviews on sites like Yelp (not to mention Chowhound, Urban Spoon, Zagat, TripAdvisor and others) presumably tell us a lot about restaurants. They also tell us a lot about the people who write them, a new study concludes.

For the study, published by the peer-reviewed online journal First Monday, Stanford University linguistics professor Dan Jurafsky and his co-authors examined 900,000 online restaurant reviews using computational linguistics and “sentiment analysis” to ferret out “the meanings that are hidden in the way people use words and connotations,” Dan explained in the Stanford Report.

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Old-Fashioned Banana Pudding — Down-Home Comfort

by in Recipes, April 11th, 2014

Banana pudding is the epitome of old-fashioned country cooking. Yet it’s based on the English dessert called trifle made of layered cake, custard and fruit, often served in a special footed glass serving dish. There are no fancy dishes used for banana pudding. The iconic banana pudding receptacle is a square-shaped Pyrex glass baking dish. Practically every “meat-and-three”-serving restaurant, old-school cafeteria and BBQ joint across the South has a shallow aluminum pan or Pyrex dish of silky banana pudding on its cold line ready to serve up. Nothing fancy, no ordeals — just easy and delicious. Read more

The West’s Tyler Florence Reveals His Mentoring Strategy — America’s Best Cook

by in Shows, April 11th, 2014

TylerFN Dish is counting down until the premiere of America’s Best Cook on Sunday at 9|8c. On the new show, four Food Network chefs representing the four regions of the United States mentor teams of exceptional home cooks in a competition to find America’s best cook. The winner walks away with the title and $50,000 in prize money. But which region will that winner be from? It could be North, South, East or West. The final result will be a testament to the mentor who coached the winner. Ahead of the premiere, FN Dish spoke with each of the mentors to find out more about the competition, mentoring strategies, what makes a good home cook and more.

On America’s Best Cook, Tyler Florence is representing the West. Tyler started out in the South and then worked for many years in New York City, so he’s got experience with three out of the four regions. But as a chef who has made his home on the West Coast and runs establishments there, Tyler is more than qualified to represent the West. He’s previously mentored home cooks and budding chefs on the shows Food 911, The Great Food Truck Race and Food Court Wars, and he’s ready to do the same again.

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Butternut Squash and Watercress Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette — The Weekender

by in Holidays, Recipes, April 11th, 2014

Butternut Squash and Watercress Salad with Champagne VinaigretteWhen I was growing up, Passover wasn’t a holiday we celebrated with any regularity. My mom was Jewish, but she had grown up in a very secular branch of the family. Occasionally we would attend a Seder at our Unitarian church (they were very into the world religions back in the 1980s), but it was not an annual thing.

Once I moved to Philadelphia, however, I found myself surrounded by family that, while still pretty New Age and multicultural, was far more observant when it came to the Jewish holidays.

And so Passover has become a staple holiday on my yearly calendar, second only to Thanksgiving in terms of eating. The meal is coordinated by my mom’s first cousin Amy, and she distributes dish assignments at least a month prior to the meal (so that people can practice and get things just right).

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