by Maria Russo in News, November 23rd, 2014
by Maria Russo in Community, November 23rd, 2014
From slaying dragons to impersonating superheroes, so much of what happens in many computer games stays simulated, but just recently, Zynga’s FarmVille, a popular Facebook application, began bridging the gap between the virtual and reality by launching the FarmVille to Table Recipe Book.
With the help of Chopped judge Marc Murphy, plus food fan Kate Hudson, Zynga’s executive chef and a community of food bloggers, this brand-new digital recipe book allows FarmVille players to bring the game’s farm-to-table focus into their own kitchen. Fans are used to planting crops and cultivating a farm to yield fresh produce in the game, and now they can use those fresh ingredients to create Marc’s, Hudson’s and others’ decadent recipes at home.
“The FarmVille to Table digital cookbook embodies the values of fresh, farm-to-table ingredients,” Marc explains, adding that for fans, it “validates that cooking is fun, easy and an activity the whole family can enjoy.”
by Maria Russo in Holidays, Recipes, November 23rd, 2014
From rich chocolate cake with frosting to salty french fries, meaty chili and a tower of buttery pancakes, comfort food comes in many flavors and textures, and this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week is no exception. Ree Drummond’s Chicken-Fried Steak with Gravy is a rich, hearty dinner featuring a tender, golden-brown cube steak fried with a seasoned breading, plus a side of fluffy mashed potatoes and a generous pour of smooth gravy for an over-the-top finish.
For more takes on tried-and-true culinary comfort, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook Comfort Food board on Pinterest.
Get the Recipe: Chicken-Fried Steak with Gravy
by Amy Reiter in News, November 22nd, 2014
Apple, pumpkin and pecan pies — or a mashup of all three — are indeed no-fail options when it comes to Thanksgiving dessert, but if you’re looking to dress up the feast this year with new takes on tradition, introduce a sweet cake to your after-dinner spread. Read on below for classic and creative holiday cake ideas from Trisha Yearwood, Ina Garten and more Food Network chefs, then check out the complete roundup of Top Thanksgiving Cake Recipes for more turkey day inspiration.
The key to making Trisha’s Pineapple Upside-Down Cake (pictured above) is building the cake from the bottom up. What will eventually be the top of the cake — the sweetened pineapple and bright-red cherries — forms the base as the batter cooks in the oven; Trisha recommends letting the pan rest atop the inverted cake for minutes after flipping so the sweet syrup absorbs into the vanilla-scented batter.
by Maria Russo in Drinks, Holidays, November 22nd, 2014
If hoppy beer makes you happy, then hoppier beer may make you happier. At least that seems to be the thinking behind the Hoppier, a barista-style machine that can automatically recalibrate the strength of hops in a beer and tailor its flavor to suit your taste.
Hoping to hop on both the trend toward product personalization and the rage for craft beer, the U.K. product design and development firm behind the Hoppier, Cambridge Consultants, has created a device — basically a beer tap crossed with an espresso machine, with a few extra high-tech bells and whistles — that uses pressure to extract hops and add them to your beer.
by Maria Russo in Food Network Chef, November 22nd, 2014
No matter if you’re hosting a crowd this Thanksgiving or preparing a simple meal for your family, you can make the feast feel extra special by shaking up a signature cocktail to pair with the spread. Stick with the warm flavors of fall when planning your cocktail menu, and don’t shy away from pairing the liqueurs with seasonal ingredients like fragrant spices; the more these tastes complement those in your dishes, the better. Read on below for Food Network’s top-five Thanksgiving cocktails to find easy-to-make sippers worthy of the holiday, then browse all of our Best Thanksgiving Cocktails and Drinks.
5. Spiced Bourbon, Beer and Maple Martinis — Laced with a splash of pure maple syrup and garnished with dried chiles, Giada De Laurentiis’ sweet and spicy cocktail is best served cold.
4. Spiked Apple Cider Cocktails — For a pop of freshness, finish each of these rum-and-schnapps-based sippers with a skewer of chopped tart apples.
by Maria Russo in Holidays, Shows, November 22nd, 2014
It’s no secret that breakfast is the most-important meal of the day, but nevertheless many children go to school hungry, having not had breakfast at home beforehand. That’s where No Kid Hungry comes in. This nonprofit organization is committed to helping end childhood hunger, and recently a few Food Network favorites teamed up with No Kid Hungry to bring a hearty breakfast to kids at school in New York City.
In the spirit of the holiday season, The Kitchen co-hosts Geoffrey Zakarian and Katie Lee joined Chopped judges Alex Guarnaschelli and Marc Murphy at East Harlem Scholars Academies to deliver deliciously nutritious breakfasts to the kindergarten and fourth-grade classrooms there. As Marc noted, “A kid cannot learn if a kid’s hungry. A kid can’t play if a kid is hungry,” which is why Alex said, “We have to really make breakfast cool.”
Get the recipe for Marc’s easy breakfast, an Asparagus and Parmesan Frittata, then check out more kid-friendly breakfasts below.
by Virginia Willis in Recipes, November 21st, 2014
With just days left until Thanksgiving, Bobby Flay and a few of his Food Network friends are coming together this afternoon to host the ultimate holiday feast and share their secrets for an easy, enjoyable turkey day. Before you tune in to Thanksgiving at Bobby’s at 12|11c today to see Bobby, Katie Lee, Sunny Anderson, Alex Guarnaschelli and Michael Symon cooking together in the spirit the season, check out the chefs’ top turkey day tips to help you get set for the feast. From the basics of menu holiday planning to the need for chicken stock on Thanksgiving, read on below to hear from Bobby and the cast as they reveal last-minute advice.
Tradition vs. Creativity
On a day that’s rooted in tradition, Katie admits, “people want familiarity” when it comes to the expected trimmings, like the turkey and stuffings. Bobby’s solution to trying new dishes? Add a few “surprises here and there in flavor.” Just a few ingredient swaps in the classics can offer subtle yet impressive updates in taste.
by Jackie Alpers in Family, How-to, November 21st, 2014
For those of you not familiar with pecan tassies, they are bite-size pecan pies. A guaranteed crowd-pleaser, they are perfect for holiday festivities and easy to prepare. We always have these on our Thanksgiving table. The pecans are freshly harvested and at their peak so they taste fantastic. And, after a big meal of turkey and dressing, one or two of these diminutive desserts are the perfect way to end the feast. A “tassie” is defined as a small cup, and these petite pies are baked in a mini-muffin tin. Pecan tassies feature the flavors and textures of pecan pie — tender and buttery crust, crunchy pecans and brown-sugar filling — all in one delicious bite.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, November 21st, 2014
Chores like peeling potatoes can make kids start to feel like they are on KP duty, and though that may be fun for a while, it can quickly turn to drudgery. This Thanksgiving, let everyone share chores so they go by faster, then set your kids up with one of these fun projects. Even little kids can roll cheese balls and cut out shapes with cookie cutters, and older kids can do more-complicated projects like creating a turkey-shaped veggie platter. These projects are win/win/win! They teach kids how to use creative thinking in the kitchen, they take some of the work off parents’ hands, and they keep kids occupied. Plus, the results look and taste good enough to meet the standards of your most-persnickety guests.
The holiday season is here and it’s time to make room on the shelf for books that will make holiday menu planning easy and fun. Rick Rodgers’ The Big Book of Sides is the perfect answer to everything from your most-elaborate holiday meals to your year-round weeknight family dinners.
The book is broken down into sections based on ingredients and preparation method, starting with Getting It to the Table, then covering Eat Your Vegetables, From the Root Cellar, A Hill of Beans and others. It’s a brilliant layout, making it easy for you to select a recipe based on what you’ve already got in the pantry or the refrigerator. The book boasts over 450 recipes, which means you’ll never be left scrambling to come up with a new way to serve potatoes again. It covers everything from classics, like Potato Rolls, from-scratch Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese, and Potato and Fennel Gratin to new favorites, like Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Maple Syrup and Carrot Ribbons with Pomegranate Dressing (recipe below for you to try at home). The Getting It to the Table chapter even includes comprehensive menus for all your special occasions, from Old-Fashioned to New-Fashioned Thanksgivings, to a New Year’s Day Open House, to a Sunday Roast Pork Dinner.