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  • Grilled Ravioli 27 Jul 2014 | 11:44 am

    From my new and exciting series "Harald grills everything but his Mom", here's the latest: Grilled Ravioli! Continue reading →

  • Chiles Reach Africa: An Excerpt from Dave DeWitt’s New Food History Book, Precious Cargo: How Foods from the Americas Changed the World 24 Jul 2014 | 10:02 pm

    The most likely scenario for the introduction and spread of chile peppers into Africa south of the Sahara is as follows. Varieties of Capsicum annuum and chinense were introduced into all West and East African Portuguese ports during the 40 years between 1493 and 1533, with the introduction into West Africa logically preceding that of East Africa. The chiles were first grown in small garden plots in coastal towns by the Portuguese settlers and later by the Africans. Continue reading →

  • Dave DeWitt’s Book Tour Dates Set 23 Jul 2014 | 1:47 pm

    I'll be on the road to four locations in Texas in August to perform cooking demonstrations for one of two of my latest books, Dishing Up New Mexico, at four Central Market Cooking School locations. I'll be in Dallas (August 11), Ft. Worth (August 12), Austin (August 13), and Houston (August 14). While in Houston, I will be making appearances around the city and particularly at the iBurn hot shop. Continue reading →

  • Garden Bounty: 3 Spicy and Chilled Summer Soups We Love 22 Jul 2014 | 7:32 pm

    I guess I don’t need to tell you that these soups are refreshing to serve during hot summer days and you don’t need to turn on the stove. But I do need to tell you that fruits and vegetables fresh from the garden or farmer’s market make the most flavorful soups, and also that your food processor and/or blender will get quite a workout. Continue reading →

  • Hot Monkey Pepper Vodka 21 Jul 2014 | 2:30 pm

    Guarding the northeast post at Distillery Row is New Deal Distillery, home to 4 vodkas, 2 gins, and 2 liqueurs. One vodka is a perfect fit for us here at the Burn! Blog, and you’ll know right away by its name: Hot Monkey Vodka, the star of New Deal’s line because it won a Gold Medal for flavored vodkas at the 2008 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, the Olympics of distilled spirits. Continue reading →

  • Just Desserts — Testing the Cutthroat Kitchen Sabotages 27 Jul 2014 | 8:59 pm FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Creating tiramisu can be time-consuming, as it involves soaking lady fingers in an espresso mixture and topping them with a sweet mascarpone cheese-based cream. This specifically requires the use of superior utensils, like whisks and mixing bowls, in order to make sure each layer has the perfect flavor profile. Host Alton Brown decided that the contestants on Cutthroat Kitchen needed to forgo these tools – one of the contestants had to replace all of his cooking tools with coffee strainers and stirrers. This made the dish especially difficult, because the coffee filter didn’t allow the mascarpone creation to be mixed properly, and it also starting soaking up all the espresso meant for the lady fingers. How could the Food Network team deem it an appropriate sabotage for the show?

    Click play on the video above to see how the Food Network culinary team could create the tiramisu with this sabotage.

    Tune in for new episodes of Cutthroat Kitchen every Sunday at 10|9c.

  • “You’ve Got to Be an Expert, You Have to Be Able to Teach” — Alton’s Post-Star Rundown 27 Jul 2014 | 7:58 pm FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Every week, Alton Brown is joining the Star Talk roster to talk about the most-recent elimination and the thoughts behind each difficult decision from the judges’ perspective.

    Click play on the video above to find out why Alton voted the way he did. (Spoiler alert: The latest finalist sent home is revealed in the video.)


  • One-on-One with the Latest Star Finalist to Go Home 27 Jul 2014 | 7:58 pm FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Food Network Star, Season 10With only one episode until the final-four rivals will pitch their would-be Food Network show to executives, the pressure was on this week as the top-five hopefuls arrived in New York City for the last leg of their Food Network Star journey. If you haven’t yet watched the episode, read no further because Star Talk is about to dish on what went down and reveal who was sent home.

    The name of the game in the Mentor and Star Challenges was live television, and after taping their first-ever live field pieces in Manhattan’s Chelsea Market, contestants headed to The Rachael Ray Show for a firsthand lesson in cooking with a purpose. It was up to each competitor to create a dish to solve the culinary conundrums on a particular family — everything from kids’ picky palates to grownups’ limited hectic schedules. And while Luca shined with a clever take on vegetable risotto, Loreal, Sarah and Nicole stumbled, each missing a key piece of the Star puzzle: education, engagement and targeted cooking.

    Ultimately, though, it was Loreal who was butchered in the contest this week after she failed to prove her culinary expertise at a meat market of all places and offered a too-complex dish to a family looking for the basics. Read on below to hear from Loreal in her first exclusive interview since the competition.

    What three words best describe how you’re feeling right now?
    Loreal Gavin: Weird, relieved, satisfied.

    How would you explain what this competition is really like?
    LG: It’s like a Kentucky Derby. We’re all racehorses, and if you start out really strong, do you have the endurance to make it through? Like we’re all pretty, and there’s different people betting on us, but someone’s got to win the race.

    What element of the competition were you least expecting, be it something positive or something negative?
    LG: Surprisingly enough, I was really surprised at how much people fell in love with my food.

    Is there one piece of mentor feedback from the whole nine weeks in the competition that is going to stick with you?
    LG: Just focusing. With my artistic disposition, focusing has always been an issue.

    Loreal GavinWhat do you want your fans to remember about you?
    LG: Always have good hair, the right red lipstick — because every skin tone needs to wear one — and if you’re going to do it, go big and follow your heart.

    You were open about the fact that it’s been difficult for you to teach on camera and convey all that it is you know. Why do you think you struggle with that?
    LG: I was born into this world like an artist, like we all have different personality types, OK? Well, being an artist is definitely one of them; it’s undisputable. I’ve always struggled with putting my feelings into words, and I’ve used lots of mediums throughout my life to release the feelings that I have. … So it’s always been something that I’ve struggled with. That’s why when they started to harp on me about it, it really hit home.

    There are two ladies left in the competition. Are you rooting for one of the girls to take home the win?
    LG: I’m rooting for both of those little badasses! Nicole just needs to get out of her shell because there is such a quirky, beautiful woman in there. She is smart, and I know she’s got it. She knows she’s got it. And Sarah, like we’re both Southern belles, you know? And she just has something so quirky and charming about her, and I feel like she’s very relatable.

    What’s next for you?
    LG: I’m probably going to move back down to Louisville. … I might write an album. I’m going to start making a lot more artwork, and I’m going to polish that part of the diamond that I am, that cannot articulate the things that I know to be true, and I’m going to teach, because this is not the last time you all are going to see me.

  • Chocolate-Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies — Most Popular Pin of the Week 27 Jul 2014 | 10:00 am FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Chocolate Peanut Butter No Bake CookiesKeeping cool in the summer used to be all about ice-cream, but not anymore. The next time you feel a craving come along, try your hand at a no-cook dessert, like this recipe for gooey Chocolate-Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies. Using easy pantry ingredients like peanut butter, milk and cocoa, this recipe is simple yet decadent, which is why it has earned its title as this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week. Keep your kitchen cool in the heat all summer long.

    For more indulgent dessert recipes, check out Food Network’s Let’s Bake board on Pinterest.

    Get the recipe: Chocolate-Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies

  • 7 Salads That Know How to Celebrate Summer Fruit 27 Jul 2014 | 8:00 am FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    arugula and strawberry salad
    Sweet strawberries. Juicy peaches. Luscious mango. If you’re looking for ways to upgrade a salad, fruits in their prime are an excellent place to start.

    Figs: Fig, Bacon and Frisee Salad
    Sweet figs are at hitting their stride right about now — and are the perfect complement to bitter greens, bacon and black pepper in this frisee salad.
    frisee and fig salad

    Honeydew Melon: Honeydew and Arugula Salad
    Here, honeydew melon sweetens up peppery arugula. Melon slices are pureed with fresh herbs, a bit of mayo and lime juice, creating a refreshing dressing that gets tossed with the greens and additional melon pieces.
    honeydew and arugula salad

    Mango: Mango and Cucumber Rice Salad
    Not your average grain salad, this sweet-spicy adaptation calls upon mango, cucumber, jalapeno, scallions, fresh cilantro and roasted peanuts — all tossed with rice and quinoa.
    mango rice salad

    Peaches: Tomato and Peach Salad with Ricotta
    This restaurant-quality salad is easy to pull off at home. Boiling the peaches and tomatoes helps bring out their natural sweetness while pureeing basil with olive oil, salt and pepper creates a pesto-like sauce that keeps things fresh (and fancy). A dollop of ricotta cheese topped with toasted almond slivers makes for a savory finish.
    peach and ricotta salad

    Strawberries: Arugula and Strawberry Salad (top)
    Strawberries don’t have to spell dessert. In fact, they offer a perfect way to temper a peppery green like arugula.

    Tomatoes: Tomato Caesar Salad with Parmesan Crisps
    Wherever you fall in the “are-tomatoes-a-fruit-or-a-vegetable” debate, there’s no denying their awesomeness in this lighter take on a Caesar salad. Juicy heirloom tomatoes are sliced and topped with a homemade Caesar dressing, watercress and mouth-watering bacon-Parmesan crisps.
    tomato salad with parmesan crisps

    Watermelon: Jicama and Watermelon Salad
    Chunks of juicy watermelon and crunchy jicama get tossed in a zesty dressing starring fresh orange juice, lime juice and honey. A sprinkling of fresh mint at the end makes the whole deal utterly refreshing.
    watermelon and jicama salad

    Abigail Libers is a freelance writer and editor living in Brooklyn. She is also the creator and editor of notesonfatherhood.tumblr.com.

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