Hand Made Baking — Off the Shelf

by in Books, December 5th, 2014

Hand Made Baking“If you can make a cake or a batch of cookies using a mix, you can surely bake something from scratch!” This is the premise of Kamran Siddiqi’s new cookbook, Hand Made Baking, and the simple, delightful, classic recipes in the book deliver on that promise. Siddiqi’s goal is to set even the most-timid home baker up for culinary success with easy-to-follow and fun-to-make dishes. Everything in Hand Made Baking, from the friendly headnotes to the luscious images, draws you in and compels you to head straight for the kitchen. Classic Cream Scones and Lemon-Poppy Seed Drizzle Cake (recipe linked below for you to try at home) dare you not to crave them. The Cinnamon-Raisin Granola wants to be your new go-to breakfast. Jammy Linzer Cookies are the perfect sweet treat to make this holiday season.

Siddiqi shared with us several tips to ensure success when baking from scratch. “My first tip, though quite obvious to most, is to read the recipe first; this helps any confusion later on.” He added, “Learn how to measure flour properly. Proper measurement of flour is crucial in baking, and not doing so can lead to lackluster baked goods. A pretty standard way to measure flour is the ‘fluff, pour, and sweep’ method, which I talk about in detail in the ‘Before You Begin’ chapter of my book.” If you’re just starting out baking from scratch, Siddiqi recommends his Nancy Drew Blondies, the Everyday Chocolate Cake and the New York-Style Bagels as a jumping-off point. And with the holidays coming up, Siddiqi said his family and friends always request the Pistachio Polvorones, the Molasses Spice Cookies, Forgetabout it Cinnamon Rolls (perfect on Christmas morning), Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons, and the Chocolate Pudding Pie. The reality is there’s not a bad recipe in the book, and you’ll find yourself reaching for it again and again.

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What to Watch: This Weekend Food Network Spreads the Holiday Cheer

by in Shows, December 5th, 2014

The Pioneer WomanIt’s never too early to get into the spirit of the season. So in keeping with that notion, Food Network is celebrating the first weekend of December with holiday-themed episodes. Watch as the Food Network stars gear up for the holiday season, baking and preparing the perfect festive spreads. Trisha’s Southern Kitchen, The Kitchen, The Pioneer Woman, Outrageous Christmas, Giada at Home, Guy’s Big Bite, Southern at Heart, Farmhouse Rules and Cutthroat Kitchen all share in the Christmas cheer.

Don’t forget to tune in to Guy’s Grocery Games, Rewrapped and Holiday Baking Championship; they are all equally packed with fun, with supermarket challenges and dessert obstacles alike.

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Trisha’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls — 12 Days of Cookies

by in Holidays, December 5th, 2014

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls
12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, Food Network’s annual virtual cookie swap. Each day, visit us here on FN Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques from your favorite Food Network chefs for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give — or keep.

This is basically Trisha Yearwood’s favorite chocolate chip cookie batter recipe, but she’s replaced the egg with applesauce so you get the same great flavor without the raw egg. Freeze the little balls of dough before dipping them in chocolate-almond bark, which helps them set more quickly. If you use regular milk chocolate, add a bit of coconut oil and it’ll do the same trick.

Get Trisha’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls recipe, and check out 12 Days of Cookies for dozens more recipes and holiday baking inspiration. Then, join the conversation: Tell us what you’re baking this season and what your all-time favorite cookie is.

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Home Cooks to Enroll in Food Network Chefs’ All-Star Academy in 2015

by in Shows, December 4th, 2014

Bobby Flay, Alex Guarnaschelli, Michael Symon and Curtis StoneThree Iron Chefs and a Level 4 World-Class Kitchen Inferno Gladiator, together Alex Guarnaschelli, Bobby Flay, Michael Symon and Curtis Stone, make up one of the fiercest foursomes in culinary competitions. And in the brand-new upcoming series All-Star Academy hosted by Ted Allen, they’ll battle it out in the kitchen as mentor versus mentor with teams of shining home cooks.

Beginning in March 2015, 10 of America’s most-skilled home cooks will make their way to Alex, Bobby, Michael and Curtis’ All-Star Academy, where they’ll be faced with rigorous kitchen challenges over the course of eight episodes. It’s up to the mentors to support their team members as they face off in the contest, but the contest isn’t just for the home cooks; with their own stellar culinary reputations on the line, Alex, Bobby, Michael and Curtis will want to guide their apprentices well if they want their team to make it to the end and one of their students to claim the $50,000 grand prize.

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Candy Corn a Christmas Food? Well, Yes, Actually

by in News, December 4th, 2014

Candy Cane Candy CornCandy corn has always been kind of a fall thing, a delicious harvest-colored treat you gobble by the handful around Halloween until your teeth ache and your belly rebels. Yeah, we’ve all been there.

But now – teeth and belly objections aside — you don’t have to stop eating candy corn just because the seasons change. Candy corn can be a winter thing, too: Brach’s has just introduced a version that looks and tastes like Christmas.

Brach’s new Candy Cane Candy Corn features the familiar kernel shape, but swaps in green and red for the usual yellow and orange. Each kernel’s tip is green, its center is white and its base is red.

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Calabrian Chile Pasta — The Weekender

by in Recipes, December 4th, 2014

Calabrian Chile PastaI believe that everyone should know how to make a simple but delicious one-pot pasta dish. It needs to taste good, use only pantry and fridge basics, and dirty a minimal number of tools and utensils. Think boxed mac and cheese, only without the lurid orange powdered cheese.

The beauty of these one-pot pasta dishes is that that you use a minimal amount of water when cooking the pasta. You retain all the starch from the pasta in the pan, which makes for a luscious sauce, and you don’t have to wait 45 minutes for a gallon of water to come to a boil. Once the pasta is cooked, you add just a few ingredients, give it a good stir, and serve.

Currently, I’m most fond of Giada De Laurentiis’ approach to the one-pot pasta meal. Her Calabrian Chile Pasta cooks in no time and tastes amazing. You start with an inch of water in a high-sided saute pan. Once it boils, you add a pound of pasta and cook until it’s al dente (stirring regularly to determine whether it needs an additional splash of water).

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10 Recipes to Win Your Holiday Cookie Swap — Fall Fest

by in Holidays, Recipes, December 4th, 2014

Sugar CookiesIf ever there was a reason to preheat your oven, the holidays are it. Whether you’re setting cookies out for Santa, going in on a cookie swap or baking a batch for yourself, these 10 cookie recipes are a must.

1. If you’re looking for a butter-and-sugar staple to be iced and frosted, Alton’s Sugar Cookies (pictured above) is the most versatile recipe of all. Buttery, chewy and slightly crisp, each made-with-love cookie is the perfect canvas for all the candy cane, snowman and Christmas tree cutouts you can get your hands on.

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5 Edible Gifts Kids Can Make

by in Holidays, How-to, December 4th, 2014

The holiday season is upon us, and that means two things: plenty of celebratory eating and lots of gift giving (and receiving)! Why not combine the two with edible gifts? The experts in Food Network Kitchen came up with these five adorable edible gifts that are simple enough for kids to make themselves, with just a little supervision. Delegate appropriate tasks to the big kids and little kids, and get creative with the wrapping and decorations. When the kids proudly present their homemade treats to teachers, friends and relatives, they’ll learn that holiday gift giving is even more fun when you’ve made the gifts yourself.

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Sunny’s Cereal Confetti Cookies — 12 Days of Cookies

by in Holidays, December 4th, 2014

Sunny's Cereal Confetti Cookies 12 Days of CookiesIt’s time for 12 Days of Cookies, Food Network’s annual virtual cookie swap. Each day, visit us here on FN Dish for a peek at new holiday cookies, party-planning tips and top techniques from your favorite Food Network chefs for rolling, spooning, slicing, baking and decorating delicious sweet treats to give — or keep.

Sunny Anderson uses multicolored puffed rice cereal (she likes Fruity Pebbles!) to make these festive treats. They’ll spread nicely in the oven (so be sure to space them well apart), resulting in a crisp-on-the-outside and chewy-on-the-inside dessert.

Get Sunny’s Cereal Confetti Cookies recipe, and check out 12 Days of Cookies for dozens more recipes and holiday baking inspiration. Then, join the conversation: Tell us what you’re baking this season and what your all-time favorite cookie is. Read more

Why Is It So Much Easier to Spill Your Coffee Than Your Beer?

by in News, December 3rd, 2014

Spilled CoffeeDid you ever wonder why it’s way easier to spill your coffee — as all those stained shirtfronts will attest — than it is to spill your beer? No, it’s not because you take more care when carrying your beer or, as one YouTube commenter has suggested, because you drink your beer more quickly. At least, it’s not only for those reasons.

Turns out it’s because the beer foam — obviously absent from your coffee cup — has a damping effect when you stop short and slosh your pint of beer.

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