Giada De Laurentiis Proves You Can Have Pasta for Breakfast
FN Dish – Food Network Blog
Leave it to Food Network’s own queen of Italian cuisine, Giada De Laurentiis, to transform a breakfast classic — bacon and eggs — into a rich, hearty pasta ideal for any time of day. While cooking for a packed crowd last weekend at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, in between answering fan questions and mingling with her onstage guest cook, Giada showed off how simple it is to make her carbonara, a next-level version of a traditional recipe. Read on below for her top-10 tips for making this silky, comforting pasta, then get her quick-fix recipe.
1. Instead of everyday bacon, Giada uses pancetta — an unsmoked Italian bacon — in her carbonara. When rendered, it becomes crispy and salty, and the drippings can be used to saute the onions.
2. Giada admits that while onions may not be an ingredient in the most-authentic carbonara recipes, they’re indeed a beloved element in her family’s recipe, as they offer sweetness, which offsets the salt, and promise “a lot of flavor.”
3. Be sure to cook the onions slowly and over low heat so they have time to develop their sugars.
4. It’s best to use room-temperature eggs, since they’re added directly to the hot pasta; cold eggs have a greater chance of seizing and scrambling, which doesn’t make for a smooth sauce.
5. Along with a few eggs, Giada adds a splash of cream, which, like the onions, is a staple in her family’s recipe. This makes the sauce extra creamy.
6. Once you pour the egg-and-cream mixture over the pasta, Giada says to simply “go, go, go,” meaning to stir quickly and constantly. By keeping the eggs moving, you’ll help to prevent scrambling.
7. As for cheese, Giada recommends a mixture of Gruyère and Parmesan; together they boast a warm, nutty flavor, and they melt easily to create a gooey finished product.
8. Giada doesn’t believe in draining the pasta; instead, just scoop out the noodles using a spider, and save the remaining pasta water, which is filled with valuable starch. You might need it to thin out the sauce.
9. While Giada opted for rigatoni to make her carbonara onstage, she says that you can use whichever shape is your favorite.
10. For an even fuller flavor, add green peas or fresh chives before serving. These will help to brighten up the dish, and chives will complement the sweet sauteed onions.
Get the Recipe: Penne a la Carbonara
What to Watch: Family Bonding on Farmhouse Rules and the Series Premiere of All-Star Academy
FN Dish – Food Network Blog
Get cooking this weekend with Food Network. First, on Saturday morning, watch The Kitchen for a variety of recipes that are perfect for a cold winter day, from chicken tortellini soup to healthy grain bowls and a maple-and-rum toddy for a warm finish. Then, on Sunday, gather around the bonfire with Nancy Fuller on Farmhouse Rules as she cooks up a comforting meal you don’t want to miss.
On Sunday night, tune in for three hours of competition starting at 8|7c. First, watch chefs rush through the aisles to figure out Guy Fieri’s favorite dish on Guy’s Grocery Games. Then, catch the premiere of All-Star Academy as Bobby Flay, Alex Guarnaschelli, Curtis Stone and Michael Symon each pick two home cooks to guide to victory. Each rookie must compete for a spot on a mentor’s team, but not all of them will make it to the next round. And don’t forget to watch a new episode of Cutthroat Kitchen to see what wild obstacles the chefs must endure as they cook.
The Kitchen: Winter Mix
Jeff Mauro cooks up a traditional family favorite, chicken tortellini soup, and FoodNetwork.com has new and tasty ways to lighten up three of your favorite dishes. Geoffrey Zakarian teaches us a kitchen basic mother sauce, while Marcela Valladolid and Katie Lee keep it healthy and delicious with their grain bowl recipes. We’ll show you a few overlooked ingredients that you just might like, and Geoffrey wraps it all up with a warm maple-and-rum toddy while the hosts get popping with fantastic ways to top popcorn.
Farmhouse Rules: Bonfire Bonding
Nancy Fuller is having the family over for some good old-fashioned bonfire bonding! She first heads to her local bakery to pick up a fresh boule of sourdough for her French Onion Soup bowls and then finishes up the rest of the meal (Homemade Beef Stock, Pork Chop Layered Salad With Blue Cheese Dressing and Chocolate Toffee No-Bake Cookies) while the family gets the bonfire started in the backyard.
Guy’s Grocery Games: Triple D Takes On Triple G … Again!
Creating the ultimate diner dish should be easy for Triple D chefs, but a strict weight limit on ingredients makes this challenge heavy-duty. Then, who has time to figure out what Guy Fieri’s favorite dish is when you get only a few minutes to shop? The final two must make a stuffed entree with ingredients from every aisle. The winner takes a road trip around the market worth up to $20,000.
All-Star Academy: Choosing Teams
Ten home cooks from around the country are about to embark on the greatest culinary adventure of their lives. But first, they will need to cook for a spot on a mentor’s team. Bobby Flay, Alex Guarnaschelli, Curtis Stone and Michael Symon will each have two home cooks to guide through the competition. Special guest judge Simon Majumdar will help decide which home cooks will have a chance to move forward.
Cutthroat Kitchen: You’re Bacon Me Crazy
One chef has to use finger tools while making a bacon-wrapped dish. Another chef has to make lasagna while driving around the kitchen in a racecar seat. Finally, a chef has to make a black and white cookie while doubling their movements on a black and white prep station.
6 Gooey Grilled Cheeses You Can’t Live Without — Comfort Food Feast
FN Dish – Food Network Blog
Though the staple of your youth may have been nothing more than American cheese on butter-smeared white bread, modern takes on grilled cheese consider that assembly just a starting point. Next time you get a hankering for the buttery, griddled goodness of an oozing grilled cheese sandwich, stack a few creative ingredients that can elevate the childhood classic to a satisfying, comforting main.
Get this: When you sandwich smoky roasted poblano peppers and creamy Monterey Jack cheese between two slices of bread, you’ll get a flavor reminiscent of classic chiles rellenos. Bring two cultural classics together for a Roasted Poblano and Mushroom Grilled Cheese, and don’t forget to brush the bread with a little chipotle in adobo for added heat.
Browned in a rich, garlic-infused butter, Food Network Kitchen’s Garlicky Ham and Swiss sandwich packs all of the elements of a French picnic in one place. Sliced cornichons keep it crunchy, while Emmentaler cheese provides a nutty creaminess that jives well with smoky deli ham.
When maple-roasted bacon, fried eggs and cheddar cheese find themselves nuzzling up between two slices of bread, the glory of the breakfast-inspired grilled cheese is well underway. Opt for soft brioche bread, and rest assured that this Bacon, Egg and Maple Grilled Cheese can be savored at any time of day.
Adding some carefully curated vegetarian ingredients can amp up the heartiness of your classic grilled cheese. Smoked Gouda and Roasted Red Pepper Grilled Cheese stacks the smoky cheese alongside sliced Muenster, plus roasted red peppers for a sweet juiciness and arugula for a green peppery punch.
Assemble a meaty grilled cheese featuring mild, melty provolone and salty dry salami. Especially when pressed between semolina bread with a swipe of fig jam, Soppressata and Provolone Grilled Cheese is a sandwich for the most-refined grilled cheese lover.
When all else fails, just keep it classic. Especially if you dunk your grilled cheese in tomato soup on the regular, a Grilled Tomato and Cheese that grills a slice of tomato right inside is a no-brainer.
More grilled cheese recipes from family and friends:
The Heritage Cook: Gluten-Free Croque Monsieur Sandwiches
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Homemade Pizza Pockets
Food for 7 Stages of Life: Best Caramelized Mushroom and Pineapple Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Dishing With Divya: Egg and Mushroom Cheese Sandwich
The Cultural Dish: Croque Monsieur and Madame
Weelicious: Grilled Cheese Pickle Panini
Swing Eats: Mind-Blowing Grilled Cheese: Sriracha Ketchup, Kettle Potato Chips, Pickles, Sharp Cheddar (gluten-free)
Red or Green: Cheddar, Peppadew & Basil Panini
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Inside/Outside Grilled Cheese with Bacon, Avocado & Sundried Tomatoes
Taste with the Eyes: Grilled Halloumi Cheese Salad, Savory Meyer Lemon Whipped Cream
Creative Culinary: Inside Out Grilled Cheese with Tomato
The Mom 100: Fork in the Road: Great Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Daily*Dishin: Grilled Cheese Italian Style: Pepperoni and Parmesan Crust
11 Times a Chicken Breast Will Save the Day
FN Dish – Food Network Blog
The food you love to hate, chicken breasts often get a bad rap: On their own and without any seasoning, they can be bland, and if they’re boneless and skinless, then they turn from moist to dry in a matter of moments when cooking. But if cooked properly (as in, not scorched beyond oblivion) and flavored, even with just salt and pepper, the go-to chicken breast can save many a day in the kitchen. This culinary workhorse is a blank canvas that you can dress up with nearly any ingredients (think Italian, Asian, French and Mexican profiles, among others) for breakfast, lunch and dinner; plus, it’s an inexpensive cut of meat that the whole family will enjoy. You can count on that. Below, in no particular order, are 11 times you’ll realize the humble chicken breast is your best friend in the refrigerator.
When You Run Out of Tomatoes on Pasta Night: Who says pasta must be served with red sauce? Rachael’s 30-minute Chicken Piccata Pasta Toss is just that — penne noodles quickly and simply tossed with classic chicken piccata fixings, like buttery chicken tenders and a bold lemon-caper sauce.
When You’ve Lost the Delivery Spot’s Phone Number: By forgoing a restaurant and making your favorite usual takeout picks at home, you’ll be not only saving money but also making a healthier dish. Win-win. This Sweet and Sour Chicken from Food Network Magazine is packed with fresh vegetables, is made with a mix of soy and chili-garlic sauces, and can be on the table in just 30 minutes.
When You’re Faced with Leftover Chicken: Repurpose those lonely leftover chicken breasts in an all-new recipe, like Jeff Mauro’s Chicken Salad. After tossing the chicken in a mustard-mayonnaise mixture, he serves the salad atop cool lettuce cups.
When You Need a Fancy Dinner, Like, Right Now: “There’s no reason weeknight dinners can’t be elegant as well as easy, and this recipe is proof of that,” the chefs in our Food Network Kitchen say of their Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts. This dinner will do the trick when you need to impress your in-laws or unexpected houseguests; they’ll never guess the chicken is rolled around deli meat and cheese. You’re welcome.
When You Want Fresh and Frozen: There’s no need to sacrifice nutrition for the sake of simplicity, especially in regard to your kids’ favorite frozen chicken tenders. Our Food Network Kitchen’s easy and healthy Homemade Frozen Chicken Fingers can be prepped today and then frozen for up to a month. Just bake them and serve with a tangy dipping sauce on nights when you need a fuss-free dinner.
When You Need a Culinary Hug: Think of Trisha Yearwood’s Chicken Tortilla Casserole as the ultimate in comfort food. It’s layers upon layers of Trisha’s buttery Chicken Gravy with green chiles and sour cream, plus corn tortillas, shredded chicken and gooey cheddar cheese.
When You Need More Than Cereal: Leave it to a breakfast of Jeff’s Crispy Chicken and Scallion Waffle Sandwich to hold you over well until lunchtime. He fries thick-coated chicken until it’s crispy, then sandwiches it between savory waffles with a smear of hot sauce-spiked maple butter and sliced tomatillos.
When Only Easy Will Do: Just because Melissa’s Simply Grilled Chicken Breasts are indeed simple doesn’t mean they’re at all boring. She brushes the meat with garlic oil before grilling it, then serves the juicy chicken with sweet and savory dipping sauce made from roasted tomatoes and onions to make sure the meal is packed with flavor.
When an Everyday Salad Won’t Cut It: Think beyond the everyday greens-and-dressing getup, and look to Rachael Ray’s Buffalo Chicken Salad to change your mind about having just another salad for lunch. This one, featuring hot sauce-slathered chicken and crumbled blue cheese, is far from ordinary.
When Winter Just Won’t Let Up: Sometimes, no matter how many sweaters you’re wearing, you need to be warmed up from the inside out, and our Food Network Kitchen’s Hearty Italian Chicken and Vegetable Soup, laced with fresh lemon juice and served with nutty Parmesan cheese, will fill the bill every time.
When You’ve Smushed Together Your Last PB&J: Weekday lunches don’t have to be predictable, thanks to Ree Drummond’s Ranch Chicken Sandwiches. She piles honey-mustard-marinated chicken high atop a bun with a double blanket of fried bacon and melty sharp cheddar cheese.
The All-Star Academy Mentors Talk Competitive Strategy — and Some Serious Smack
FN Dish – Food Network Blog
When it comes to competition shows, everyone’s got an angle, a competitive strategy in hopes of winning. On All-Star Academy, premiering Sunday, Mar. 1 at 9|8c, each of the mentors has his or her own way of approaching the competition. As culinary instructors, they have different methods for teaching the mentees as they lead them through the many difficult cooking challenges, which test the home cooks’ resolve in order to find the single best one in the nation.
FN Dish recently caught up with Alex Guarnaschelli, Bobby Flay, Curtis Stone and Michael Symon to find out their competition strategies, how they think they’re going to win and what sets them apart from their fellow mentors — and they didn’t hold back with their answers.
Alex Guarnaschelli: My policy is honesty. … My strategy is to focus on myself, put my blinders on and ignore the other mentors. Instead of me competing with them, it’s me competing with myself to give these competitors the advice they need to go all the way to the end. I’m banking on a motherly touch helping me. I only have one restaurant, and I have more time on my hands to think about these people, consider them and focus on them, instead of focusing on the rivalry.
Bobby Flay: I plan to win by letting my cooks really … do what they want to do, what’s important to them … so that they are confident when they start cooking, but then also sort of guide them in small things that may alter how the dish actually tastes or looks or feels complete. I’m not as overbearing as those guys [Alex, Michael or Curtis]. They’re really in their cooks’ faces … . And I kind of, like, sit back and let it all sort of unfold, and then I make decisions based on what’s happening.
Curtis Stone: I want my other mentors to underestimate me. … I want to find two cooks that are super organized, clean and take direction well. I don’t actually care about their cooking ability. … I just want someone that can listen to me, because I can show them what to do. I’m literally on the stoves every night in my restaurant. … I’m not saying that [the] other mentors are not in their kitchens, but they’re not in their kitchens like I am.
Michael Symon: I’m going with keeping it simple but elegant and making sure that my team learns good techniques, because I feel that good techniques are the backbone to delicious food. I feel I have the best ability to keep my team calm. From all of the years in the restaurant business and working with all different cooks … I’ve always felt that I could get the best out of my cooks with honey. … I’m not saying that I won’t lose my temper, but I’m going to try and keep them in good spirits, confident and calm.