Tag: the next best thing you never ate

Shichimi Togarashi — The Next Best Thing You Never Ate

by in News, December 17th, 2013

Shichimi Togarashiby Susan Vu of Food Network Kitchens

I used to work in a Japanese restaurant and everyone there put shichimi togarashi (a Japanese mix of seven ingredients: two kinds each of chile flakes and sesame seeds, then orange zest, ginger, hemp seeds and seaweed) on everything — even french fries. It’s such a good, all-around condiment. My three favorite food components are heat, acid and crunch, and between the chiles, orange and sesame seeds, this seasoning touches upon all three of them. I put it on roast potatoes right when they come out of the oven, I love to toss blistered shishito peppers with it and a squeeze of lime juice, and it’s a great finisher for seafood too.

Look for shichimi togarashi at Japanese grocery stores or order it online.

Kumquats — The Next Best Thing You Never Ate

by in News, May 28th, 2013

KumquatsYes, clearly kumquats are a fruit you’ve seen in the market or on our shows, but many still have no idea what to really do with them. I truly love them. They have a huge, explosive orange flavor, but with the tartness of a lemon or lime. The entire thing is edible, from rind to flesh to seed (though I personally don’t enjoy eating the seeds), and they are great used in dishes ranging from savory to sweet.

But now I think it’s time to share an outstanding flavor combination with you all. This is something I’ve been making for years. I always thought it would be the signature at my dream restaurant/bar — the cocktail that would put me on the map.

Kumquats and cola. Really, no joke. Just cut a kumquat in half, squeeze the juice into the cola and then drop the fruit in. Give it a gentle stir and enjoy.

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Carob Molasses — The Next Best Thing You Never Ate

by in News, March 14th, 2013

Carob MolassesWhat’s the next best thing you never ate?

Carob molasses. I know what you are thinking, but it’s not that weird health food chocolate substitute that made trail mixes depressing. Carob molasses is something completely different and worth seeking out. We’ve even put the molasses in baskets on Chopped. You get carob molasses from cooking the fruit of the carob pod with water, then straining and reducing it down to a crazy delicious syrup. It’s a Middle Eastern product, so if you want it, head to your nearest Middle Eastern market or look online.

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Vacuum-Fried Snacks — The Next Best Thing You Never Ate

by in News, January 15th, 2013

Vacuum-Fried Snacksby Vince Camillo

What’s the next best thing you never ate?

The staff of Food Network Kitchens might know. We see (taste and smell) ingredients and products just before they make themselves known to the national palate. Sometimes one of our on-air chefs brings them into our kitchen, sometimes we find them during restaurant dinners or in grocery stores, at home and away. Each month we’re going to share one with you, along with tips or recipes. And we know that many of you devote a good amount of time to exploring, tasting or simply getting dinner on the table, so let us know what you find that might just be the next best thing we never ate.

If you’ve ever eaten a vacuum-fried banana chip (or any vacuum-fried fruit or vegetable), you may have been staring into the bag of the next big thing. Though the bag you remember was likely empty, because once you eat one of these puffed little disks of pure banana essence, you’ll realize that you can’t stop — the most important indicator of a successful snack.

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Gochujang — The Next Best Thing You Never Ate

by in Food Network Chef, Product Reviews, September 26th, 2012

gochujang red pepper paste
What’s the next best thing you never ate?

The Food Network Kitchens staff might know. We see (taste and smell) ingredients and products just before they take their place in the national palate. Sometimes one of our on-air chefs bring them into our kitchen, sometimes we find them during restaurant dinners or in grocery stores, at home and away. Each month we’re going to share one with you, along with tips or recipes. And we know that many of you devote a good amount of time to exploring, tasting or just getting dinner on the table, so let us know what you find that might just be the next best thing we never ate.

There’s always room for more hot sauce, so say hello to a new friend: gochujang. The next best thing you may have never tasted was actually a part of my everyday meals growing up. Gochujang (a spicy, slightly sweet, beautiful dark red fermented chili paste) has been a staple ingredient in Korean households for hundreds of years. It’s used as an ingredient in stews and sauces, or simply as a dip for a snack. You may have seen it when you ordered bibimbap (mixed rice dish) at your favorite Korean restaurant. To see this special food from my childhood bloom into the next best thing — I embrace it. I see the popularity of gochujang as the first step to a greater awareness of Korean cuisine.

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