The Competition Turns Bittersweet on Spring Baking Championship — Duff’s Recap of Episode 2

by in Shows, May 4th, 2015

Spring Baking ChampionshipSpring is definitely here, and while most of us are settling into baseball season, going on picnics or starting that gauntlet that exists between spring break and summer vacation, the remaining seven bakers on Spring Baking Championship are back in the kitchen and getting ready to bake some honey sweetness. It’s always interesting to see how the bakers react in week 2. One of their fellow bakers has been eliminated and now it is very real. You can be asked to walk the plank at any moment, but that $50,000 is that much closer to being yours. The level of competition just got steeper.

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Vote Now in Round 2 of the Chopped at Home Challenge

by in Shows, May 4th, 2015

Round 2 Chopped at HomeChopped fans, starting today (through May 18) you have the chance to vote for the finalist’s dish you’d like to win Round 2 of the Chopped at Home Challenge. The winner will earn the opportunity to compete in the Chopped kitchen at Food Network headquarters for a chance to win $10,000, just like a real Chopped champion.

Get the details on how to vote, how the challenge works and how you can enter upcoming rounds.

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7 Kid-Friendly Recipes to Serve on Cinco de Mayo

by in Family, Holidays, May 4th, 2015

Mexican LasagnaBefore they’re ready for margaritas and garlicky guacamole, we’re introducing our kids to a handful of starter Mexican recipes like these. Each one is simple and straightforward enough for busy parents who still love a delicious meal on a festive day.

Rachael Ray’s Mexican Lasagna (pictured above): With spinach tortillas in place of pasta, this 5-star recipe packs chicken breasts, black beans, corn, cheese and more into a dish you can make (and even freeze) ahead of time and then throw in the oven for a rich and bubbly Cinco De Mayo dinner.

Slow-Cooker Shredded Chicken Tex-Mex: Sometimes the best family meals are the ones that are easiest to make. This slow-cooker meal comes together while the kids are in school, politely waiting to be topped with sour cream, guacamole or salsa when the whole family is ready.

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Bobbing for Doughnuts — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, May 3rd, 2015

From climbing atop an oversize highchair to donning the now-infamous blueberry suitJet Tila will stop at nothing to prove his Cutthroat Kitchen allegiance and attempt to understand what chefs had to endure in the throes of sabotage. On tonight’s all-new After-Show, Jet, alongside Alton Brown, took his devotion one step further by trying his hand at a particularly sweet sabotage as they reflected on the challenges to befall the Evilicious tournament chefs.

The name of the game was doughnuts in Round 3, and in true diabolical fashion, Alton auctioned off a timesuck that forced one competitor to use only his mouth to free a row of doughnuts suspended from strings. Upon learning of this sabotage and seeing it for himself, Jet could do little other than laugh in sheer disbelief, though Alton was quick to challenge him to an impromptu attempt. “I’ll meet you in the middle,” Alton told him. And Jet admitted, “This sucks,” after just a few seconds of grabbing at the first doughnut. “I can’t do this!” he joked, later taking a light-hearted approach to the game, while Alton used all of his determination to power through the task at hand.

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Matcha: It’s a Trend

by in News, May 3rd, 2015

Though matcha has been around for centuries as part of traditional Japanese tea ceremonies, the finely ground green tea-leaf powder is taking cafes (and Instagram) by storm. Traditional green tea is made by steeping green tea leaves that are then discarded, but with matcha, whose name literally means “powdered tea,” you’re drinking the actual leaves. This whole-leaf consumption means a higher nutrition content and, more specifically, a higher concentration of antioxidants. But what about the buzz? One cup of matcha has 70 milligrams of caffeine per eight-ounce cup. Coffee has 96 milligrams for the same portion, but matcha drinkers say that their energy is more consistent, with less of a dive after the caffeine effect wears off.

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Almost-Famous Bloomin’ Onion — Most Popular Pin of the Week

by in Community, May 3rd, 2015

Almost-Famous Bloomin' OnionLeave it to the chefs in Food Network Kitchen to take a restaurant classic with a cult following and remake it for home cooks, stripping away the tricky chef techniques and leaving just the over-the-top flavor you crave. That’s the case with this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week, a crispy onion-and-dip starter inspired by the appetizer served at a steakhouse chain. This next-level recipe, featured in Food Network Magazine, features a sweet onion sliced bloomin’ style, then dredged in a cayenne-spiked batter and fried until golden brown.

For more appetizer inspiration, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook: Appetizers board on Pinterest.

Get the Recipe: Almost-Famous Bloomin’ Onion (pictured above) from Food Network Magazine

7 Taco-Flavored Dishes for Cinco de Mayo

by in Holidays, Recipes, May 3rd, 2015

In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo, get ready to reignite the age-old debate of what really makes a taco a taco. Many will argue that it’s all about the tortilla, while others claim it’s the filling that counts. And, of course, there are the endless topping options, including avocado, pico de gallo and fresh cilantro. But let’s not forget the essential herbs and spices that lend a taco its sought-after savory quality. With hints of garlic, onion, chili powder and sometimes cumin, this aromatic blend is synonymous with Mexico’s signature hand-held treat. With the right spice combination, you can have taco-flavored anything. (Think taco pizza or taco potatoes.) Try switching up your Cinco de Mayo menu with any of these clever takes on the authentic Mexican flavor.

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This Mug Lets You Drink Beer and Work Out at the Same Time

by in News, May 2nd, 2015

BeerThere are probably those among us who consider bending an elbow to raise a beer to be the height of exercise. Those people may want to consider a relatively new product called MugMuscles.

A beer stein with one of those hand-grip exercisers built right into the handle, the product aims to let you work out and drink beer at the same time. (You may want to wait to squeeze the gizmo between sips, though, to prevent unfortunately timed spills.)

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This Dairy-Free Horchata Has a Matcha Mix-In

by in Drinks, May 2nd, 2015

The ingredients for horchata vary depending on the particular recipe’s country of origin. For example, in Mexico and many parts of Latin America, horchata is made from white rice, almonds, sugar and cinnamon (sometimes with milk added). In Spain, it’s made from tiger nuts, also known as chufas (a dried root vegetable that is gaining popularity here in the United States). In Puerto Rico, sesame seeds and sweetened condensed milk form the basis for the drink. No matter how you make your own horchata, when served chilled, it’s a refreshing beverage for any time of day. Being the whole-food enthusiast that I am, I like to make horchata with brown rice instead of white rice, and with pure maple syrup in place of white sugar. I also soak the raw almonds overnight to increase their nutritional value. Thanks to the nuts, this horchata is rich and creamy without the addition of dairy milk. Although it’s irresistible plain, it can be fun to add in some of your favorite flavors. Blending in fresh fruits or berries is a great way to turn this otherwise light drink into a more substantial snack.

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The Heat Is On with Sweet Desserts

by in Recipes, May 2nd, 2015

Sunny's Paprika GanacheWhile you may be familiar with adding a punch of heat to traditional savory favorites like tacos — both hard-shelled and soft-shelled — as well as chicken, on this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen the co-hosts shared three new ways to feel the sweet burn in sweet treats. To key to ensuring that spicy ingredients don’t overpower a dessert is to balance those flavors with naturally sweet ones, which Sunny Anderson, Geoffrey Zakarian and Katie Lee demonstrate in their must-try recipes. Read on below to see how they do it.

It takes only three ingredients to make Sunny’s Paprika Ganache, boasting the smoky heat of Hungarian paprika. After just a few minutes of resting together, the warm cream will melt the spice-spiked semisweet chocolate and the mixture will be ready to stir until smooth.

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