Tag: summer fest

Favorite Shelled Pea Sides — Summer Fest

by in In Season, June 26th, 2013

Creamy Spring Peas and PancettaPeas are good popped straight from the pod, but they’re even better with a little TLC. Here at Food Network, FN Dish is lining up our top pea sides, each popping with a whole lot more than color. Sweet peas, garden peas, English peas, whatever you choose to call ‘em — these babies are bright, light and in-season.

Your classic mashed potatoes are revisited in this Tyler Florence recipe for Smashed New Potatoes with Peas, Lemon and Pearl Onions, and serve as a solid side to a grilled steak.

Food Network Magazine‘s Creamy Spring Peas with Pancetta (pictured above) comes with three doses of peas: shelled English peas, sugar snap peas and snow peas. Spring Peas with Dates and Walnuts utilizes the same pea trilogy, but this time integrates a natural sweetness from the dried fruit.

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Wake Up with Berries — Summer Fest

by in In Season, June 19th, 2013

Buttermilk Pancakes With Vanilla Bean-Berry SyrupThese days, the containers of blue and red berries stacked on produce shelves might be the most difficult thing to decline. Especially when they’re so in-season, so plentiful and so perfectly sweet. Of course, berries do wonders layered in a trifle, baked into a cheesecake or scattered in a fruit salad. But today, we’re focusing on one specific utilization of the berry: its hand in breakfasts. Strawberries, blackberries, blueberries — you name it. They’ve each got a place in the first — and oh-so-important — meal of the day.

First things first, let’s talk parfaits. They make for layered, well-rounded breakfasts you can eat all week long, whether you switch them up or not. Ellie Krieger’s Muesli Parfaits are filling with a good dose of nutty crunch. This recipe for a Berry ‘Nana Oatmeal Parfait laces oats and vanilla almond milk into the mix. And if you want to get really creative, Food Network Magazine‘s Strawberry-Shortcake Parfait Pops transition the breakfast favorite into a refreshing dessert.

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The Multipurpose Potato — Summer Fest

by in In Season, September 19th, 2012

four cheese scalloped potatoes
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In the past weeks, we’ve feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. For the last installment of Summer Fest, we’re exploring potatoes.

Taken straight from the sack, potatoes are pretty bland. But with just a little love — and butter — they become a force to be reckoned with. And let’s face it: They’re as versatile as they are comforting. Yukon gold or russet? Baked or smashed? Now that the most satisfying crop of all is in season, there’s no telling what could end up on your dinner table tonight.

If you grow your own potatoes, did you know they can keep for upwards of six months or more? Fresh potatoes can be eaten immediately and are prized for their tender, new skins. But potatoes can also be cured in a dry, room temperature space to allow skins to slightly desiccate. Keep them in the dark and they can store for upwards of six months. For more great tips like this one, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens.

Before we get ahead of ourselves, there’s something to be said for a quality baked potato. You know, the kind that’s sliced down the middle, perfectly moist on the inside and inundated with toppings. Food Network Magazine’s Twice Baked Potatoes pack in leeks and chive-and-onion cream cheese, while the Neelys’ Twice Smashed Baked Potatoes recipe goes the broccoli and double-cheese route.

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Let’s Go Apple Picking — Summer Fest

by in In Season, September 12th, 2012

french apple tart
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring apples.

If you live in the Northeast, the introduction of apple season means more than a wide-eyed experience in the produce section. Instead, it means a trip to the farm for some apple picking. Donning your favorite comfy outfit and making your way into the country, this trip should be one of the first things you do when the air becomes crisp and the leaves turn golden. Don’t be afraid to pick apples by the crateful this year — Food Network has plenty of ideas to keep you busy.

For breakfast, drizzle maple syrup over Ellie Krieger’s Whole Wheat Apple Pancakes, blend Fuji and Golden Delicious apples together for Alton Brown’s 10 Minute Apple Sauce and eat a warm, hearty Zucchini and Apple Bread fresh out of the oven.

With so many apples, try incorporating a few into lunch and dinner, too. Tyler Florence’s classic Roast Loin of Pork With Baked Apples embodies everything that’s good and hearty about the fall, while this recipe for Apple and Brie Quesadillas brings an unconventional edge to a Tex-Mex mainstay. As for sides, look to simple Baked Apples and an Israeli Couscous With Apples, Cranberries and Herbs.

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Better Beets — Summer Fest

by in In Season, September 5th, 2012

salt roasted beet carpaccio salad
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring beets.

Now that we’ve rolled fresh into September, the in-season stud of your next grocery loot is, inarguably, the beet. The root veggie may almost exclusively come canned, but it will arrive in no such packaging this time around. We mean it — spiky can openers and shiny cylinders are banned from your shopping bag from now through October. We’re talking fresh ones — and only fresh ones.

If you plan on growing your own beets, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens for great tips like getting an annual soil test to determine if you’re missing any nutrients or micronutrients. Beets are sensitive and grow irregularly in the soil if you have a boron deficiency.

But what does it mean for a beet to be fresh? To start, the colors can range from the quintessential deep magenta to vibrant gold, white and everything in between. Not only that, but going can-free ensures that BPA and other chemicals don’t weasel their way into your sweet, pristine beets. In the end, the biggest perk is pretty clear: Everything is simply better fresh.

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Eggplant: Champion of the Meat-Free Meal — Summer Fest

by in In Season, August 29th, 2012

eggplant
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring eggplants.

As far as produce goes, eggplant stands out as one of the few items that can truly carry a meal. I mean, think about it. When dinnertime rolls around, who’s really down for an entire entrée of green beans, carrots or onions? Not me. Eggplant, on the other hand, is meaty and versatile, so there’s no need to give it side dish-only status. Once the slick skin is slid off and it’s all sliced up, it just takes the right addition of heat to take it from its raw, bitter form to supple and slightly sweet.

Now that eggplant is in season, this is the time to give it a headliner position on your dinner table. They’re pretty good throughout the year, yes, but sometimes the smooth purple skins of out-of-season ‘plants are tainted with bruises or the shape is even deformed — and that just won’t do. Rest assured, however, that with the season ranging from July to October, you can find eggplant at its absolute peak for most of the year. As you transition from summer to fall, treat it as the centerpiece of your meals. These recipes should get you started.

If you plan on growing your own eggplant, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens for great tips like how far apart to grow each plant — do not over-plant, as eggplant will produce very well and over a long period of time.

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There’s More to Melon — Summer Fest

by in In Season, August 22nd, 2012

fish tacos with watermelon salsa
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring melons.

Picture this: You’re strolling through the produce section and the melon selection is juicier than ever. They’re so sweet and juicy, in fact, that they deserve a little more than a simple slice.

As you know, “melon” is an umbrella term, bringing to mind all of our thick-skinned, juicy-on-the-inside favorites, be it watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew. Of course, nibbling unadulterated watermelon to the rind, wrapping cantaloupe in prosciutto and balling honeydew into a summer fruit salad are tried and true, but keep in mind that there’s more to melon at this time of year. Go for preparations that are entirely unexpected.

If you plan on growing your own melons, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens for great tips like watering your melons well in the beginning of the plants’ life, but backing off to minimal watering after the majority of the fruit is set. It’ll produce a sweeter meat in your melons.

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Peaches Move to the Big Kids’ Table — Summer Fest

by in In Season, August 15th, 2012

roasted turkey breast with peaches
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring peaches.

It’s August? Uh, when did that happen? We may still be sweating, but it’s back to the daily grind we go — back to the soccer practices, school buses and other non-summer activities. But before we peel out of the driveway and embark on our inaugural back-to-school shopping journeys, there’s something to be said for enjoying August for what it is, rather than that awkward gap between summer bliss and getting back to the grind.

If you ask me, August means one thing: peaches. It means soaking up these last lovely moments of summer with a juicy peach at the peak of ripeness. Now, as the velvet-clad orbs hang from the limbs of Georgia trees, there’s no better time to bring a few home.

With peach iced tea, peach pie and peach cobbler ranking high on the fruit’s roster, it’s no surprise that the bulk of peachy dishes tag along to the fruit’s sweetness. Well, this August, we’re all about bringing peaches to the dinner table because, trust me, peaches aren’t just made for dessert.

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Meat and Peppers — Summer Fest

by in In Season, August 8th, 2012

sausage and pepper skewers
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring peppers.

Late summer means the arrival of sweet, colorful peppers. Ranging from green to red to yellow to orange and purple, they are refreshingly crunchy when raw and wonderfully tender when cooked. And, they pair particularly well with meat, whether grilled, tossed with pasta or stuffed.

If you plan on planting your very own pepper patch, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens for great tips like letting the pepper plants dry after each watering to avoid soil fungi. Before you get cooking, be sure to choose firm, richly colored peppers, avoiding those that are limp and shriveled. Store them in a refrigerator for up to one week.

If you’re in possession of a grill, look no further than Food Network Magazine’s Sausage-and-Pepper Skewers (pictured above) and Sunny’s Steak Fajitas With Chimichurri and Drunken Peppers. They’re definite crowd-pleasers. If you’re looking for a little challenge, try Bobby’s hearty Grilled Pizza With Hot Sausage, Grilled Peppers and Onions and Oregano Ricotta. Better yet, get your guests involved in the pizza-making process.

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Tomatoes Go Beyond Salads — Summer Fest

by in In Season, Recipes, August 1st, 2012

heirloom tomato pie
We’re teaming up with food and garden bloggers and our friends at HGTV Gardens to host Summer Fest 2012, a season-long garden party. In coming weeks, we’ll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you’re harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. Today we’re exploring tomatoes.

Come August, tomatoes — heirloom, beefsteak, cherry and more — hit their peak. Plump and juicy, they scream summer with their sweet, slightly acidic flesh and bright hues. Perfect for summer salads, there’s arguably no combination more classic than a simple caprese brimming with ripe tomatoes, creamy mozzarella and fragrant basil. But, tomatoes’ versatility far surpasses the realm of summer salads. In fact, they’re fantastic in soups, pies, pastas and sides. Just give one (or more!) of these easy cooked tomato recipes a try.

If you plan on planting your very own tomato patch, be sure to check out HGTV Gardens for great tricks like mulching tomato plants heavily with hay or leaves, and tips like pulling off stem tops to prevent puncturing fruit when stacking. Before you get cooking, be sure to choose firm, noticeably fragrant and richly colored tomatoes that are free of blemishes. Store them at room temperature and use them within a few days.

Hosting a casual garden party? Pass around Rachael’s Roasted Tomato Bruschetta for a simple hors d’oeuvre. Ina’s Roasted Tomato Basil Soup and Roasted Tomato Caprese make for a sweet start to any meal. Food Network Magazine’s Heirloom Tomato Pie (pictured above) serves as a bright main that needs nothing more than a leafy green salad in accompaniment.

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