Tag: summer

7 Recipes That’ll Make Tomato Lovers Out of Your Kids

by in Family, Recipes, August 19th, 2015

Cheesy Bagels with Sliced TomatoesWhether it’s a backyard garden or the bargain bin of your supermarket, by this stage of summer one thing is clear: Tomatoes have taken over. Cherry tomatoes, heirlooms, red, yellow. They’re inexpensive, sweet, juicy and packed with vitamin C. The problem? Tons of kids just won’t eat them. Until now. These recipes are the kid-tested turn-’em-around tomato dishes that my kids eat happily, and it’s a good bet that yours will too.

Cheesy Bagels with Sliced Tomatoes (pictured above): These are toasted bagels like your kids have never had before. Melted cheddar works perfectly with a slice of cool, sweet tomato right on top. It’s like pizza for breakfast, if pizza made your taste buds do the cha-cha.

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Chilled-Out Takes on Comfort Food Favorites

by in Recipes, August 15th, 2015

Orange-Scented Chilled Tomato SoupIf you’ve been on a hiatus from some of your piping-hot comfort food favorites as the weather’s been heating up, rest assured that you don’t have to wait till fall to dig in. Luckily, some of our most-beloved hot dishes have ice-cold alter egos that are well worth your time this summer. Zero in on dishes that are typically hot, hot hot, but this time take them chilled out.

As it turns out, gazpacho isn’t the only cold-soup wonder. Giada’s De Laurentiis’ Orange-Scented Chilled Tomato Soup has all the same ingredients as a steaming bowl of tomato soup (canned tomatoes, chicken broth, etc.) without the high temp. It may not be the best for dunking toasty grilled cheese, but it’s a bright and refreshing dish on a scorching day, for sure.

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8 Desserts to Check Off Your Frozen-Treat Bucket List — Summer Soiree

by in Recipes, August 13th, 2015

Frozen Banana Ice Cream SandwichesBeach trips, backyard cookouts, outdoor movies and other excursions are the most-often-evoked examples of “summer bucket list” material. But these summery activities aren’t the only things you should be checking off during the warm-weather months. For a lot of us, summer is defined by the food we eat —which, oftentimes, is not food we can eat much of at any other time of year. Before summer’s end, be sure to knock these eight non-negotiable, must-eat frozen treats off your list. When it’s all said and done, will you have put your summer to good use?

8. Ice Cream Sandwiches
If a piping-hot burger off the grill is the only kind of sandwich-esque bite you’ve munched on this summer, it’s about time you savored a sweeter take. Don’t let summer pass before you assemble one like Giada De Laurentiis’ Frozen Banana Ice Cream Sandwiches, which feature cookies coated with chocolate-toffee candy bars.

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Over the Top: 7 Extravagant Topping Ideas for Burgers & Hot Dogs

by in Recipes, August 11th, 2015

Let’s just come out and say it: Sometimes it feels good to be bad. And sometimes, chopped onions and a modestly portioned square of cheese leave a lot to be desired. Plus, a cookout is no time to be well-behaved. Next time you’re grilling, throw caution to the wind by piling your burgers and hot dogs high with these extravagant toppings. (Think cheddar + smoky bacon + crisp onion rings — all heaped on top of one patty with reckless abandon.)

The simplest way to take a burger to new heights… 
… is to top it with fries. Better yet, make them curly fries loaded with cheese. These Cheesy Fries (pictured at top) are the ultimate burger companion, but instead of serving them on the side, Food Network Kitchen piles them on top of juicy beef burgers, along with the classics, lettuce and ketchup. There’s no need to go any further than that; these crisp spuds doused in beer-cheese sauce are more than enough to sink your teeth into.

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How to Use Up Your Big Bunch of Basil (Without Making a Caprese Salad)

by in In Season, Recipes, August 10th, 2015

shrimp saladBasil is summer’s superstar herb, but too often it’s confined to sprinkling over tomato dishes. And the bundles you find at farmers markets and many grocery stores can be massive — meaning that the caprese salad recipe that calls for 10 or so leaves hardly makes a dent in the big bunch you just bought. Too much basil, however, can be a good problem when you know how to use it.

In the September issue of Food Network Magazine, you’ll find complete dinner menus that utilize the fragrant herb. The Thai-Style Basil Shrimp with Basil-Coconut Rice (pictured above) requires four cups of basil, for example. Browse through the rest of the magazine’s basil-laden recipes along with more ideas to enjoy your stash.

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Buy These Fruits Now and Preserve Them for Later

by in Recipes, August 8th, 2015

As summer winds down, the thought of no longer seeing local strawberries and stone fruits is already making me yearn for another month of warm weather and seasonal produce. But not all is lost! You can buy fresh fruit now and preserve the produce with recipes for easy jams and preserves. Don’t be afraid to do it yourself: Canning jam is easy enough and means you can be eating summer fruit long past their market-fresh appearances.

Easy Strawberry Jam (pictured above)
Ina Garten loves to use big pieces of hulled, fresh strawberries in her jam, so she cuts the berries only in half. She adds superfine sugar (which melts really quickly), but if you can’t find it, you can blend your own in the food processor. Orange-flavored liqueur will bring out the sweetness of the strawberries, and a chopped green apple will help thicken the jam; a few blueberries will add depth of flavor and create a great deep-red color. The mixture will keep in the fridge for at least two weeks. But if you want to store it for longer, pack and seal in canning jars according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

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Beat the Heat with Punch Bowls and Pitcher Drinks

by in Books, Drinks, August 8th, 2015

Punch Bowls and Pitcher DrinksAs the dog days of summer press down on us, it’s only natural to feel a little parched. There’s no better way to beat the heat than with an array of large-batch cocktails and drinks, and that’s exactly what Punch Bowls and Pitcher Drinks offers. The title, written by Jeanne Kelley and Sarah Tenaglia, pulls inspiration from fresh, seasonal fruits, plus herbs and spices. Classic cocktails are reimagined as new sips, like Julep-Tea Punch, Lychee Mojito Punch, Old-Fashioned Manhattan Punch and Mai Tai Punch. But we can’t get enough of the drinks from the Height of Summer section, especially the Peachy Moonshine, Spiked Spa Water and Watermelon-Tequila Punch (pictured above; recipe below for you to try at home).

Before you dip into any of the recipes, keep in mind these tips and tricks for working with fresh cocktail ingredients and various spirits:

  • The tartness of citrus fruit varies considerably from backyard tree fruit to purchased fruit from the farmers market or the grocery store. Hyper-fresh backyard citrus will have a more intense flavor.
  • Unless the recipe specifies, you do not need to peel the fruit or vegetables. In many cases the peel or rind of a fruit adds a note of necessary bitterness to counter the sweeter meat of the fruit, and also helps infuse the lunch with more aromatic flavors.
  • Brands of alcohol also vary considerably. In order to get the right balance, add the amount of liquor called for in the recipes (the smaller amount if a range is listed). If, after tasting, you want a more potent mix, add more liquor by the tablespoonful to taste.
  • Some folks really prefer sweet drinks. If a recipe calls for a flavored syrup or sugar, a little more can be stirred into the mix, but start with the recommended amount.

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10 Ways to Be a Tomato Whisperer — Summer Soiree

by in Recipes, August 6th, 2015

Heirloom Tomato PieTomatoes aren’t like other types of in-season produce that we lose our minds over when they reach their peak (we’re lookin’ at you, peaches). We eat tomatoes year-round — no matter the season — and we rely upon shelf-stable staples like canned plum tomatoes, tomato paste, sun-dried tomatoes and more to get us through. Right now, however, tomatoes are juicier and sweeter than ever, and with great bounty comes great responsibility. A true tomato whisperer and lover of all things tomato — a champion of tomato cookin’ — holds these 10 peak-season values true all season long.

1. Makes a Different Kind of Pie

Countless times, you’ve beckoned the delivery dude or even made your own pizza pie from scratch. But now that tomatoes are in their prime, slathering a pie in from-the-jar marinara would be a travesty. Do as Food Network Magazine does and make a picturesque Heirloom Tomato Pie (pictured above) that would never dare show up in a cardboard pizza box. With a buttery cornmeal crust, fresh herbs, Manchego cheese and mozzarella, this elegant beauty is crowned with a gorgeous sunset-spectrum of mixed heirloom tomatoes.

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Food Network Staffers’ Favorite Vacation Eats

by in Recipes, Restaurants, August 4th, 2015

If you’re a food obsessive like us, good eats are at the epicenter of your summer travel plans. Here are the summer vacation tastes we FoodNetwork.com staffers fantasize about for the rest of the year — and the recipes that help us re-create those lazy beach days (or Parisian adventures!) back home. Read more

6 Kid-Tested Cold Dinners for Hot Summer Nights

by in Family, Recipes, August 1st, 2015

Capellini with Tomatoes and BasilThe idea of cooking a hot dinner in the summertime reminds me of asking my kids to clean up their rooms, because the answer to both is the same: “I’m too tired!” That’s why I love this list of cook-ahead or no-cook ideas for easy summer dinners. Each one is kid-tested by my own four rascals but delicious enough for every adult at the table to enjoy as well.

Capellini with Tomatoes and Basil (pictured above): Just another 5-star recipe from Ina Garten, this one has tender noodles soaked in sweet tomato juices. These noodles practically beg to be slurped, so have those napkins ready.

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