Tater Tots have long been a side dish darling, with the versatility to accompany nearly any meal, from breakfast to dinner. But in this week’s Chopped Dinner Challenge for Chicken and Tater Tot Casserole, those craved-after Tater Tots serve as the basket ingredient, and that means they’re being upgraded to the main dish. As the Food Network Kitchen chefs point out, this meal is a perfect, crunchy substitution for a typical pot-pie dish.
When it comes to creating a successful dessert, it’s often about striking the right balance. Cloyingly sweet is not necessarily how you want to finish a meal, especially on Chopped. When presented with a dessert basket consisting of some of the most-sugary processed items, the two finalists (a 10-year-old and an 11-year-old) on Short Order Cooks stayed mainly within the sweet confines of the basket, whereas the judges take it one step further, bringing in savory notes, but with one holdout: Geoffrey, who says, “I’m going right at the sweetness.”
“All the best restaurants in the country are sort of tilting away from excessive sweetness,” Ted infers from what Alex and Chris are saying about taking the baskets, containing banana pudding, vanilla ice cream, icing and brownie mix, in a slightly savory direction. “You could kind of just put all this together and be done,” says Alex, baking a warm brownie and topping it with a scoop of ice cream, but “the challenge is to figure out something to make that reinvents what’s here.” Chris adds, “I think that’s the only route you can go,” taking it down a savory road.
Chestnuts may typically give off a distinct holiday-season vibe, but the Food Network Kitchen chefs are changing that, looking to welcome in fall with an innovative twist. This week’s Chopped Dinner Challenge, Chestnut Ravioli with Browned Butter and Thyme, replaces a beloved fall favorite, butternut squash, with a winter-esque basket ingredient, canned chestnuts. To evoke an uncanny butternut squash texture out of those chestnuts, first drain them, reserving the liquid from the can, and finely grind them. Next, add ricotta, Parmesan, the reserved liquid and an egg, and then blend for an enticing ravioli filling.
Start by heating the drained chestnuts in the microwave with water for about 3 minutes or until they’re soft. Once that’s done, add a tablespoon of the reserved liquid and finely grind the chestnuts. Then, add the Parmesan, the ricotta, and a large pinch of salt and pepper, and blend it all together. Once smooth, taste and season as needed. After, add an egg and mix until the ingredients have meshed. Put it in a mixing bowl and reserve.
Tonight one professional chef and three amateur cooks faced off in the finale of the first Chopped Ultimate Champions tournament, battling for the chance to win $50,000 and a brand-new car, the largest prize in the show’s history. Amateur cook Keith Young, hero cook Diana Sabater and celebrity cook Laila Ali all had what it takes to beat professional chef Giorgio Rapicavoli, and, in fact, one of them did just that. FN Dish has the exclusive interview with the winner.
We’ve watched as four returning champions have battled to earn a spot in the Chopped Ultimate Champions finale. One professional chef, one amateur cook, one hero cook and one celebrity have made it through. On the line is the biggest prize ever handed out on Chopped, $50,000 in cash and a new car. Each of these competitors has the potential to win, but only one will walk away the Ultimate Champion. Ahead of Tuesday’s finale at 10|9c, support your favorite competitor by voting for him or her in the fan poll.
Chopped, with its unconventionally combined ingredients, is all about the chefs’ creativity and out-of-the-box thinking. And this Chopped Dinner Challenge recipe for Oat Risotto with Roasted Cauliflower is certainly a dish that requires a degree of inventiveness. Because in this risotto, there isn’t any actual risotto involved. The Food Network Kitchen chefs selected steel cut oats as the basket ingredient to substitute the main ingredient — rice — and, no, they aren’t cooking up breakfast. The steel cut oats, fused with chicken broth, white wine, pungent garlic, parsley and Parmesan, serve as the perfect complement to the crisp, lightly seasoned roasted cauliflower.
For the first time on Chopped, professionals and amateur cooks will go head-to-head at the end of the five-part Ultimate Champions tournament. But they’ve all competed on Chopped before. They’ve tasted what it feels like to win, and they’re hungry for more. In tonight’s fourth round, four celebrities from the world of television, music and sports battled to determine which one would move on to the grand finale, where there’s a chance to win the largest prize in the show’s history: $50,000, with a brand-new car to top it all off. FN Dish has the exclusive interview with the winner from Part 4.
Before summer takes its final bow, there are still plenty of opportunities to get the grill out and enjoy the warm weather before it turns chilly. This recipe for Jicama Tabbouleh and Chicken Salad is this week’s Chopped Dinner Challenge. The chefs of Food Network Kitchen chose jicama as the basket ingredient, and in this recipe, it replaces the bulgur wheat typically used in a Middle Eastern tabbouleh. This root vegetable is often used in Latin American cuisine for adding crunchy texture to salsas, and it does just that in this tabbouleh. Pair it with paprika-rubbed grilled chicken to make a complete meal — the refreshing salad complements the chicken nicely. Jicama is available year-round in the supermarket, so you could easily make the tabbouleh anytime you’re craving a fresh reminder of warmer months.
For the first time on Chopped, professionals and amateur cooks will go head-to-head at the end of the five-part Ultimate Champions tournament. But they’ve all competed on Chopped before: They’ve tasted what it feels like to win, and they’re hungry for more. In tonight’s third round, four heroes in their own field of work battled to determine which one would move on to the grand finale, where there’s a chance to win the largest prize in the show’s history: $50,000, with a brand-new car to top it all off. FN Dish has the exclusive interview with the winner from Part 3.
Watch any episode of Chopped and you’re bound to find one competitor who’s blender-happy — he or she will puree anything, oftentimes most of the basket ingredients, into a dish. Although that isn’t always the best method for impressing the judges, sometimes it works, as in the case of the recipe in this week’s Chopped Dinner Challenge. The chefs of Food Network Kitchen chose frozen french fries as the basket ingredient, and they wanted to transform them without the typical frying, so this French Fry and Scallion Soup was born. It’s a comforting potato soup in half the time, because you’ve just skipped the peeling and cubing.