by Jessica Merchant in Drinks, July 10th, 2015
by Maria Russo in Recipes, July 10th, 2015
My brother recently tied the knot, which meant lots of parties and prep beforehand. A few months ago, I got to plan a super-fun bachelorette party for my now sister-in-law, and the individual strawberry champagne gelatin shots that one of the girls brought were the hit of the night.
Not only were the shots adorable and fun, but they tasted delicious. And she kept telling me how simple they were! I begged for the recipe. For the party, she used mini plastic cups and sealed them with plastic lids for easy transporting and consumption in a hotel room. I could not even wait to make my own version of these!
I’m rather nutty about Bellinis — give me all the Prosecco and all the fruit. I adore trying new combos, and last year I even made a Bellini bar, which has been an easy go-to at parties these days.
For the party shots, I stuck to a classic, the peach Bellini. And since we were serving these at home, I made them in a baking dish, but they would definitely work in the single-portion cups if you’d like to take them to a party. These are my new favorite party trick, and they couldn’t be better for summer, now that peaches are finally in season.
by Maria Russo in In Season, Recipes, July 9th, 2015
Welcome to the sticky, sweltering dog days of summer. If the season’s heat has you bogged down, take refuge in a chilled treat this weekend: these easy-to-make, eat-with-your-hands Frozen Peanut Butter Bites (pictured above). Made with only four pantry ingredients, the Neelys’ sweet-tooth-satisfying dessert celebrates the perhaps most-beloved of all flavor combos: peanut butter and chocolate. And maybe the best part of this recipe is that there’s no need to turn on the oven.
Get the Recipe: Frozen Peanut Butter Bites
by Allison Milam in Drinks, July 9th, 2015
The sun is shining, the grill is hot and you’re looking forward to a meal of juicy meat. Fast-forward 30 minutes and you’re face to face with a dry, overcooked hunk of steak or a tough chicken tender. What went wrong? Getting the grilling game right can be tricky. When it comes to grilling burgers, meat master and Texas restaurateur Chef Tim Love recently told FN Dish, “There are actually two common mistakes I see often, which are a shame, so listen up!” He shared his take on those two problems, plus offered ways for avoiding them next time.
1. Flip Burgers Once and Only Once: Constant turning will toughen and dry out meat, and if you flip too soon, burgers will stick. Cook 2 minutes per side for rare, 3 for medium-rare, 4 for medium and 5 for well-done.
by Mallory Viscardi in Books, July 8th, 2015
The dog days of summer call for ice-cold drinks, but you already knew that, right? With the cooling qualities of an icy drink in hand, all of your warm-weather dreams are possible: breezy pool days, lively backyard barbecues and even relaxing nights spent at home. Stay refreshed all summer long with these oh-so-summery fruity spins on your favorite sips that you shake up at your home bar.
Give the rum-based New Orleans classic, the Hurricane, an extra-summery edge by whipping up Ted Allen’s Passion Fruit Hurricane (pictured above). Combine rum, grapefruit juice and passion fruit puree with ice in the blender and you’ll see why it’s so pleasant to sip through a straw.
by Melissa d'Arabian in Food Network Chef, July 5th, 2015
When summer heats up, there’s only one thing to do: pack your cooler, grab a good book and hit the beach. Even when we step out of the kitchen, our minds never wander far from delicious dishes, and we like our literature the way we like our pantry: overflowing with mouthwatering food. These are the books you’ll find in our beach bags this summer.
The World on a Plate by Mina Holland
If you’re looking for a book to double as an imaginary culinary vacation, The World on a Plate is the book for your beach bag. It won Best Culinary Travel Book in the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards, and it’s easy to see why. Holland’s writing is open and engaging, and she teases your appetite, one country’s specialty dishes at a time. The food dances to life through history and cultural context. Once you read it, you’ll never again be able to peruse your pantry without seeing the storied histories and secret lives of some of your favorite ingredients — right down to the cinnamon and sugar in your favorite cookies. It’s a culinary and historical tour of world cuisine that includes everything from the most-prevalent flavor profiles and pantry staples to each cuisine’s signature recipes. The World on a Plate is the perfect summer read for the soul that has a serious (and seriously hungry) case of wanderlust. Order your copy here.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, July 4th, 2015
I love summer vacation, don’t you?
But you know what I don’t love? Getting out of my routine, especially my healthy routines, such as eating well and working out. At home, I know exactly when I will go to the gym, who I will see there (my workout buddies — hi, Heather and Julie!) and what I will eat when I get home. I don’t have to think about it or waste any energy figuring out how to make that all happen; that’s one of the great benefits of setting up solid routines to support our life goals.
So what happens when I go on vacation? When I am out of my normal routine, and faced with an unfamiliar environment and a list of to-do’s (albeit fun ones!) that involve not just me but my family, too, I can easily find myself going days or even a couple of weeks without following my normal healthy-eating and workout routines. Sometimes, I actually am quite happy to embrace the indulgence and enjoy a little “time off.” Who wants to go to New York City and not enjoy its amazing restaurants?
For these times, I have created a “bare minimum” plan — things that I can do pretty much no matter where, no matter what — that will keep me at least a little on track while still allowing me to let go of the workout guilt and enjoy time off from the routine. Because vacation should be fun and guilt-free, right?
You ready? This is what I do when I am letting loose, and it’s totally doable:
by Maria Russo in Recipes, Shows, July 4th, 2015
Memorable because of the creamy mayonnaise-based dressing and mix-ins like hard-boiled eggs, smoky ham and crunchy celery, macaroni salad is a popular summer potluck pick, and many recipes can be made with just a few pantry staples and served in under 30 minutes. Browse below for twists on the traditional recipes, like the Neelys’, which adds pimento peppers, and one that uses mild cheddar cheese. Bring one of these macaroni salads to your next backyard get-together and you might notice that it’s finished before the meat even comes off the grill.
Old-Fashioned Macaroni Salad — For a true “down-home” side dish, try the Neelys’ take on macaroni salad (pictured above). They combine the classic ingredients, like freshly hard-boiled eggs, ham steak and mayonnaise, with pimento peppers for a Southern kick and pickle relish for a bit of unexpected sweetness. You’ll have to be patient to dig into this creamy salad, because the Neelys suggest refrigerating it for two hours, which allows the flavors to fully meld.
by Jessica Remitz in Recipes, July 3rd, 2015
The key to enjoyable summer entertaining is to keep the party simple, from the ingredients you shop for to the dishes and drinks you serve. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the cast came together to create the ultimate, one-stop guide for seasonal bashes, featuring recipes for crowd-pleasing dips, a bold chicken dinner and, because “it’s five o’clock somewhere,” of course, a fruity cocktail from Geoffrey Zakarian.
Since most summer soirees take place outside, perhaps around the pool or picnic table, keep the appetizer spread easily accessible with a trio of dips. Jeff Mauro’s Strawberry and Mango Guacamole comes together with just a handful of ingredients, letting the fresh fruit complement the spicy jalapeno add-in. For a classic mayonnaise-based option, stick with Geoffrey’s 20-minute Bacon and Egg Dip, a play on classic deviled eggs. In her Roasted Garlic and Frozen Veggie Dip, Sunny Anderson adds the warm flavor of roasted garlic to a cream cheese-laced mixture of processed vegetables for rich results.
When it comes to the main course, chicken is a perennial people-pleaser, and Katie Lee’s all-in-one recipe for Grilled Butterfly BBQ Chicken with Macaroni Salad (pictured above) is a must-try pick. To guarantee bold flavor in the meat, she seasons the chicken with a mixture of chili powder and garlic powder before grilling it until juicy and slathering it in barbecue sauce. The macaroni salad celebrates the traditional flavors of the beloved dish, which includes a tangy, sweet dressing spiked with yellow mustard and a pinch of sugar.
by Allison Milam in Holidays, Recipes, July 2nd, 2015
The heavyweight champion of cookout season, sweet summer corn knows how to dance with every main dish at the table and often comes out swinging against even the pickiest eaters. From simply grilled corn on the cob to a fun spin on salsa and a shortcut way to revamp a classic dessert, get ready to find out why corn deserves the title of “Best Add-On” at your summer table.
We can bet that a star-spangled Flag Cake, a berries-and-cream trifle and other red, white and blue treats will make a proud appearance at your 4th of July festivities. But painting your spread with the colors of our flag isn’t the only way to celebrate our nation’s independence. Get in the spirit by stocking your cookout menu with all-American cookout classics that scream “America” without bothering to be red, white and blue.
Not only are ribs on their own American treasures, but the Neelys’ Sweet Cola Ribs (pictured above) come with a glug of a national favorite — soda — in the sauce, which gives it a punch of unexpected sweetness. Smoking the ribs on indirect heat makes them the most-tender, delicious barbecue to serve on the 4th. Just make sure you provide napkins.