Caption It: Taste Tester

by in Community, July 19, 2013

Alton BrownFrom private chefs and culinary instructors to restaurant owners, underground chefs and James Beard Award semifinalists, this year's cast of Star finalists boasts a long and impressive kitchen resume. They're keenly aware of what it takes to turn out balanced and full-flavored dishes, but thanks to the pressure of cooking on camera and against the clock — for a panel of esteemed food stars, no less — some of the rivals' offerings have proven disappointing, some even inedible. While the Selection Committee has demanded culinary excellence from day one of the competition, now nearly two months into the contest, the judges are finally starting to see consistently stellar plates.

In the sneak-peek photo above from Sunday's all-new episode, it looks as if Alton's come across a dish he especially likes. No need for utensils or a tasting table here: He's gone hands first into a pot of one finalist's offering, picking at it while looking over his shoulder with a serious side-eye. What kind of food do you think is waiting for Alton in that pan, and who do you think made this sample-worthy meal?

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Photos: Mentors’ Most Memorable Facial Expressions

by in Judges, July 18, 2013

Alton Brown and Giada De LaurentiisNow seven weeks into the competition, the remaining finalists are just now finding their footings in the Food Star Kitchen, and many are able to hold the attention of an audience on camera. They can turn out winning meals and garner high praises from focus groups, but their performances weren't always so star-worthy, and no one knows that better than the three people who've been face-to-face with the competitors' offerings from the very beginning: the judges, Alton, Bobby and Giada.

This Selection Committee has watched the contestants develop from day one, and in the last two months, the judges have experienced firsthand the exciting, disappointing, and simply odd plates and presentations shared with them. Given the surprises and sheer meltdowns they've seen from this year's competitors, then, it's no shock that the judges' faces through it all have been as wild and unpredictable as the antics they've witnessed. From Alton's furrowed brow and Bobby's cheeky grin to Giada's glaring side-eye, the judges don't hide what they're feeling well.

Browse this photo gallery to see the mentors' most memorable facial expressions, then tell Star Talk in the comments: What is your favorite moment from the season so far?

No-Bake Sweets for Sunday’s Star

by in Community, July 17, 2013

Chocolate Cream PieNo matter who you're with or where you're watching Food Network Star from, you surely have on hand eats and drinks to last you through the episode, right? Here at Star Talk, we want to see what you're munching on. Every Wednesday, check back for recipes to get you ready for the episode ahead, and on Sunday nights, snap photos of your spread and share them with @FoodNetwork via Twitter and Instagram using #FoodNetworkStar.

This week is proving to be a doozy on the heat index, which means that after days of sticky humidity and all-around sweatiness, the last thing you'll want to do come Sunday night is turn on your oven to make dessert. But just because you won't be baking doesn't mean you can't enjoy deliciously sweet treats. For this weekend's all-new Star, cool off with a few no-bake desserts, like the indulgent-yet-refreshing recipes below.

Show us what you're making

One-on-One with the Latest Star Contestant to Go Home

by in Interviews, July 16, 2013

Chad and Russell - Food Network Star Season 9Every Sunday, Bobby, Giada and Alton take on the difficult task of eliminating one finalist in the quest to help guide fans to vote for Food Network's next sensation. And this is no easy task. Check back here every week to read Star Talk's exclusive exit interview with the latest Star hopeful to leave Food Star Kitchen.

If you missed the show and recorded it, don’t read any further — Star Talk is about to chat with the latest finalist to go home.

Read Star Talk's exclusive interview

Tell a Story and Throw Some Rims on It — Justin’s Rebel Recap

by in Recap, July 15, 2013

Justin's Rebel Recap Episode 7With half of the hopefuls left, the crew returns to the Food Star Kitchen and sees Bobby Flay in chef whites, cranking out what looks like the best food I've seen on Food Network Star all season. I guess that's why he’s Bobby Flay and the other six people in the room aren't — yet.

Wonderful, incredible, delicious, sexy: These words don't provide any actual description of what's going on in one's mouth. I adore this challenge.

  • Rodney, the recovering rocker, has made it quite clear to us that he speaks in the parlance of his former profession. It's not a bad thing, necessarily, but the actual taste of a "boss," a "killer" or "dynamite" isn't very appealing. Poor Rodney got the cartoon music played on him. That happened to me on 24 Hour Restaurant Battle when I compared pancakes to modernist sculpture. I deserved it.

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Cook Your Heart Out: Watch the Final Episode of Star Salvation

by in Videos, July 14, 2013

http://img.foodnetwork.com/FOOD/2013/06/27/DOVE_60_s4x3_lg.jpg

For the first time in Star history, one eliminated contestant will have a chance to re-enter the competition in a four-week Web series called Star Salvation, presented by Buitoni.

The humble potato made a second appearance in the form of potato chips on last Sunday's episode, where host Robert Irvine tasked Chris and Lovely with making it the star of a dish. While Chris agreed with Robert's critiques of his dish, he disagreed that Lovely used enough potato chips to truly highlight the ingredient as a prominent feature. In the end, Chris left Food Star Kitchen for the final time.

Lovely's got her eye on the prize. She's managed to out-perform five other talented contestants at this point. Will Chad finally put an end to her streak? This week they'll have to cook their "hearts" out.

Click the play button above to watch the final episode and for the first time ever, one finalist will re-enter the competition next Sunday on an all new episode of Star.

VOTE: Who do you think deserves a second chance?

Who’s Your Favorite Star of the Season?

by in Community, July 13, 2013

Food Network Star Season 9 ContestantsChances are, seven weeks into the season, you have a favorite contestant. Maybe he's been eliminated, or maybe she's still fighting for the chance of a lifetime. Were you a fan of the infamous Danushka? Did Viet's dishes make you drool? Maybe you want to go along for the ride with Russell's culinary revolution. Whether your favorite contestant is still in the running or has said goodbye to Food Star Kitchen, fans have the chance to voice their opinions all season long in the Fan Poll.

Twelve hopeful finalists have dreams of stardom, but only one will earn the title. Vote for your favorites up to 10 times per day here.

Caption It: Here’s Looking at You

by in Community, July 12, 2013

Alton Brown, Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby FlayCome evaluation, the Food Star Kitchen turns into a scary place week after week. As finalists stand wide-eyed awaiting judgment, three successful chefs and stars stare back them, ready to dole out several notebooks' worth of critiques about their food and performances. Sometimes the scene ends with tears and an emotional goodbye, but other times the atmosphere is far less tense — perhaps even happy — be it on account of one contestant's superstar presentation or particularly camera-worthy meal.

Check out the sneak-peek photo above from Sunday's all-new episode: Giada and Alton look out to the remaining finalists during evaluation and smile, while Giada points two fingers at them, doing so in a seemingly positive way. Do you think the mentors look particularly pleased because the group as a whole was successful this week, or did one competitor deliver an especially knockout performance? What kind of feedback do you imagine the judges are giving here?

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Do You Want to Be on the Food Network Star Finale? — Email Us

by in Community, July 11, 2013

Do You Want to Be on the Food Network Star Finale?For the first time in Food Network Star history, fans have a chance to ask Alton, Bobby, Giada and all 12 finalists questions during the final episode, which airs August 11 at 9pm/8c. Before the winner is revealed, the contestants will gather in the studio on August 7 to tell all and view never-before-seen footage from the season. Bobby, Alton and Giada will also share their favorite moments during an emotional look back at the remaining finalists' journey to the finale.

Is there something you've been dying to know from the season? Do you want to be on the Food Network Star finale?

Star Talk is soliciting Skype viewers and callers throughout the country who would like to be part of the show that tapes on Wednesday, August 7 starting at 10am/9c.

Email a Food Network Star producer now

Sunday’s Star Menu: Your Signature Dish

by in Community, July 10, 2013

LasagnaAs Sunday afternoons turn into evenings and the hours until the next episode of Food Network Star tick away, how do you settle in to watch the latest premiere? No matter who you're with or where you're watching from, you surely have on hand a spread of eats and drinks to last you through the episode, right? Here at Star Talk, we want to see what you're munching on. Every Wednesday, check back for a themed menu to get you ready for the episode ahead, and on Sunday nights, snap photos of your spread and share them with @FoodNetwork via Twitter and Instagram using #FoodNetworkStar.

Signature dishes: They're the go-to meals you're known for preparing flawlessly every time and the dishes you immediately look to when asked to cook for a special occasion or to bring food to a party. On Sunday's all-new episode of Star, the remaining contestants must put their culinary points of view on a plate in the form of their own signature dishes and sell them at an auction in the Food Star Kitchen. You, too, can show off deliciously infamous plates at home with the help of these top-rated recipes for classic preparations of timeless meals below.

Anne Burrell's family-friendly Lasagna (pictured above) features layer upon cheesy layer of pancetta-studded marinara sauce, sauteed Italian sausage and earthy mushrooms, plus a creamy mixture of ricotta and Parmesan, and a topping of mozzarella. A big-batch recipe that's easy to make, Anne's basil-laced Lasagna slices better if it's baked a day before it's served.

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