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  • San Diego Burger Battle Part 3: Execution 19 Sep 2014 | 3:06 pm

    Time is the one currency you can never make back. Once it's spent, it's gone forever. Going into the last few days before the San Diego Burger Battle, I'd invested a good deal of chrono currency preparing for the big day, August 9th. Game time loomed and it was time to face the competition on the field of battle. Continue reading →

  • Hot News 18 Sep 2014 | 1:56 am

    You'd think that with summer winding down and fall muttering, "C'mon, c'mon, c'mon" as it waits to take over, grilling and barbecue news would take a turn for the mundane. That weird stories of barbecue and hot sauce would go into hibernation, like some gigantic bear with hard arteries and a desperate need for TUMS. Continue reading →

  • Hot List: Four Great Chili-making Ideas from the Fiery Foods Super Site 13 Sep 2014 | 2:59 pm

    September marks the transition from summer to fall not just for the weather but also for eating. Chili being the lovechild of stew and outdoor summer cooking, it's a great way to ease yourself into the shorter, colder days to come. Here's a highlight reel from our sister, the Fiery Foods & Barbecue Super Site to fire your imagination when it comes to making chili at home. Continue reading →

  • The Last Day to Enter the 2015 Scovie Awards 12 Sep 2014 | 11:57 am

    The deadline for entering the 2015 Scovie Awards Competition is tonight at midnight, and there will be no additional extension. Your products entered must arrive in Albuquerque no later than September 19th. Continue reading →

  • Two Days Left to Enter the Scovies 11 Sep 2014 | 4:04 pm

    The deadline for entering the 2015 Scovie Awards Competition is now tomorrow, September 12 at midnight, and there will be no additional extension. But remember, your products entered must arrive in Albuquerque no later than September 19th. Continue reading →

  • Your Guide to Cooking the Fall Harvest 20 Sep 2014 | 10:00 am FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Pear-Pecan Upside-Down CakeThe first day of autumn is just days away, and whether you’re preparing to host weekend tailgates or you want to throw a fancy fall soiree, get set for the season by filling up your recipe repertoire with go-to dishes that are both impressive for guests and easy to prepare. When you’re shopping the farmers market or walking the aisles at the grocery store, check out the fresh, in-season produce, like squash, potatoes, greens and pears, and design your menu based upon whatever looks best that day. Check out the party-ready recipes below to find sweet and savory inspiration for your fall cooking, then head over to The Kitchen headquarters to see how the co-hosts kicked off the season on this morning’s all-new episode.

    If you think slow cookers are for only meaty chilis and soups, think again, because Food Network Magazine introduced a Pear-Pecan Upside-Down Cake (pictured above) that comes together with the help of the machine. After setting up the pears at the bottom of the slow cooker and topping them with a cinnamon-laced cornmeal batter, your hands-on work is just about finished, and all you have to do is let the cake cook for a few hours. Invert the cake so the pear slices are on top and serve with cool, fluffy whipped cream for a simple-yet-stunning presentation.

    Beef and Butternut Squash SoupFor something a bit more savory, look to Giada De Laurentiis’ Beef and Butternut Squash Stew (pictured above). This hearty combination is made in only one pot and boasts the rich flavors of Marsala wine and sun-dried tomatoes, plus a trio of fragrant fresh herbs.

    Kale and Brussels Sprout SaladA fast, fuss-free recipe, Nancy Fuller’s good-for-you Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad (pictured above) is large enough to feed a crowd. She opts for a food processor to thinly shred the vegetables and greens, and she creates a cheesy dressing with pine nuts, Dijon and lemon juice to top them. She recommends letting the dressed salad rest for a few minutes before serving, so the kale and sprouts have a chance to absorb the bold flavors of the topping.

  • A Creamy Broccoli Dip That’s a Healthy Winner 20 Sep 2014 | 8:00 am FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    creamy broccoli dip
    Fall not only means the start of football season — it also means the start of many Sunday meals getting replaced by chips and dip, salty bar snacks and microwave finger foods. But filling up while watching your favorite team doesn’t have to be a losing situation for your health. Nor does it have to keep you limited to raw vegetables from the crudites platter.

    This year, replace high-sodium, store-bought spreads with a dip of your own creation — one that’s just as creamy and craveable and also a fun makeover of classic ranch dressing and vegetables.

    Here, in place of the conventional bottled dressing, a mix of avocado and Greek yogurt give the dip its creamy texture as well as a sweet and tangy flavor. The broccoli lends the dip a good dose of healthy nutrients and some herbaceous notes (not to mention a gorgeous color). And the mix of dill, garlic powder and dried onion flakes give it that ranch-like flavor.

    So keep an eye out for double dipping. With a few pulses of the food processor, you’re ready for game time — and healthy snacking.

    Processed Dip: 0. Broccoli Dip: 1.

    Creamy Broccoli Dip


    1 cup broccoli florets

    1 clove garlic, peeled

    1 green onion, trimmed and roughly chopped

    ¾ cup Greek yogurt

    ¼ avocado, cut into a few pieces

    1 teaspoon dried onion flakes

    ½ teaspoon dried dill

    ½ teaspoon salt-free garlic powder

    Pinch freshly ground black pepper


    Fill a medium pot with 2 inches of water and then place a steamer basket on top, above the water. Place the broccoli florets in the steamer basket and cover with the lid. Steam over medium heat until the broccoli is barely fork-tender and still vibrant in color, 3 to 5 minutes.

    Place the garlic and green onion in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the broccoli, yogurt, avocado and spices. Pulse again until everything is smooth and well combined. Transfer the dip to a serving bowl.

    Sodium content: Broccoli: 30 mg sodium per cup; Greek yogurt: 60 mg per 6 oz, depending on brand. (All other ingredients 0 to 1 mg.) 

    All sodium content from the USDA National Nutrient Database, release 26, and based on values for raw ingredients for traditional serving sizes.

    Jessica Goldman Foung began the blog SodiumGirl.com to capture her adventures in a low-sodium life. She regularly writes about salt-free flavor tips and ingredient swaps. Her first cookbook was Sodium Girl’s Limitless Low-Sodium Cookbook, and she is currently working on her second, to be released in 2015.

  • The Roasted Veggie Plan: Foolproof Prep + 10 Creative Uses 20 Sep 2014 | 7:30 am FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    The Roasted Veggie PlanWe all want more time. And we all want to be healthy. So when I develop a strategy that meets both goals, I get excited about sharing it with you. Today I’m sharing my roasted veggie strategy. It’s really quite simple: Bake up a tray or two of veggies on the weekend to stick in the fridge and use for recipes all week. Roasting the veggies brings out the vegetables’ natural earthy sweetness, and it makes them last for days in the refrigerator, which means you can make up a batch of veggies on Monday to use all week for recipes. You can combine veggies freely, making pretty color combinations or simply leveraging whatever happens to be in your crisper drawer. This is my favorite kind of convenience food — one I make myself.

    How to Roast the Veggies
    The ideal number of vegetables for flavor and visual balance is three. But, hey, live large and pick four or streamline down to two — the choice is yours. But I usually pick three vegetables and cut down to bite-size pieces (about 1/2 to 1 inch, depending on the vegetable). For each cup of vegetables, toss with 1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil (or coconut oil for a fun twist) and season with kosher salt and pepper. I divide up my vegetables into hardier, longer-cooking vegetables (List A, below) and softer, quicker-cooking vegetables (List B). Lay any vegetables from List A on a large rimmed baking sheet (line with foil or parchment paper for easy cleanup), and bake at 400 degrees F for approximately 10 minutes. Pull the tray out of the oven, stir the cooking vegetables, then add any vegetables from List B to the tray. Return the tray to the oven and continue cooking until the vegetables are golden and tender, approximately 10 minutes more (depending on the vegetable and cut size), stirring once or twice. Try to keep the vegetables in their own section of the tray so if one veggie starts to overcook, you can easily remove it and return the other vegetables to the oven.

    Once the vegetables are cooked, remove the tray from the oven and let the vegetables cool slightly. Gently transfer the vegetables and any juices to a container or bowl to use for recipes. Or freeze your cooked veggies to use in the future (a great way to preserve vegetables that are about to go bad in the crisper drawer).

    What to Do with the Roasted Veggies: Your imagination is the limit, but here are 10 ideas to get you started.

    1. Serve on top of hot or cold quinoa along with chopped leftover chicken.

    2. Stir into brown rice and add Kalamata olives, oregano, feta cheese, red wine vinegar and olive oil for a healthy, hearty brown-bag salad.

    3. Pulse in the blender with a raw minced garlic clove, olive oil, Parmesan, toasted pecans and a squeeze of lemon to make a chunky pesto.

    4. Toss with hot whole-grain pasta, a bit of starchy pasta water, chopped basil and Parmesan cheese for a roasted primavera pasta.

    5. Toss with a little lime juice, ground cumin and chili powder to make a meat-free filling for make-your-own-taco night.

    6. Spread on a slab of toasted country-style bread, sprinkle with Gruyere cheese and broil until bubbly (about one minute) for a French-style tartine.

    7. Add chopped bacon and cubed sweet potato to the tray and make an oven hash.

    8. Mix with preserved lemon and roasted garlic to make a chunky Mediterranean-inspired topping for grilled salmon.

    9. If you have any leftovers, chop them up and mix them with some red wine vinegar and a dash of honey to make a homemade relish that will dress up sausages, burgers or burritos. You can also freeze your veggies for easy future recipes.

    10. Let’s not overlook the obvious: Serve them as a side dish at dinner. Three vegetables means a variety of vitamins represented at the table, and it means your family probably won’t get bored.

    But the options don’t end there. What will you make with your newest convenience food?

    List A:
    Brussels Sprouts
    Root Vegetables (Beets, Parsnips, Carrots, Turnips)
    Sweet Potatoes and Yams
    Butternut Squash

    List B:
    Yellow or Sweet Onion
    Mushrooms (Halved If Small or Medium, Quartered If Large)
    Zucchini and Summer Squash
    Cherry Tomatoes (Halved If Large)

    RECIPE PICTURED: Roasted Radishes and Carrots

  • Scalloped Potatoes — Down-Home Comfort 19 Sep 2014 | 1:00 pm FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Scalloped PotatoesScalloped Potatoes. Potatoes au Gratin. Potato Cheese Casserole. Potato Cheese Bake. Many names describe this mouthwatering, golden-brown, bubbly dish of down-home comfort.

    I have a friend who is a personal chef in Atlanta. She told me that she once described a possible menu dish to her customer as a casserole and her customer responded with a slightly disdainful, haughty voice, “Oh, no, our family doesn’t eat casseroles.” Duly noted, my wise friend observed. A few weeks later she thought she’d try again. She described pretty much the same dish, but this time as a gratin. The same customer replied in that same disdainful voice, “No, that’s too far too fancy, our family doesn’t eat gratins.” My friend knew her stumbling block was the language, the description, the perception, because she knew she meant the same recipe. So, going up to bat for a third time, a few weeks later still, she described the dish as a “bake.” It worked. “Oh, yes,” the customer happily replied, “that sounds lovely.”

    I don’t care what you call it; if you marry potatoes and cheese with a bit of cream in a fit of glorious excess, the result is down-home comfort. And, in the battle for the ne plus ultra comfort-food dish, it’s scalloped potatoes that smash mashed potatoes, it’s scalloped potatoes that are the mack daddy to mac and cheese, and it’s scalloped potatoes that grind it out over grits.

    Scalloped potatoes are the food equivalent of your favorite ancient, threadbare cotton T-shirt. Scalloped potatoes are the culinary version of a warm, cuddly puppy. Scalloped potatoes are walking in dappled sunlight hand-in-hand with your sweetie through autumn leaves. Scalloped potatoes are sitting by a roaring fire in your warmest slippers reading your favorite book. Scalloped potatoes are the berry-stained hands of a grandmother and the smile of a sweet, gurgling baby rolled into one. Scalloped potatoes are a downy-soft feather bed and comforter on a cold winter’s night and the bright, cold burst of a sparkling glass of lemonade on a hot summer day.

    The word “scallop” comes from the French word escalope, which means something thinly sliced, often baked in a sauce. Thinly slicing the potatoes so that they melt into one another, bound by their own starch, is key to the success of this recipe. Don’t wash the potatoes! The quickest way to slice the potatoes is in a food processor fitted with a thin slicing blade. If the potatoes are too large to fit into the feed tube, halve them and place them in the feed tube cut-side down so that they sit on a flat surface. Alternatively, pull out the mandoline — or a chef’s knife and a dose of patience — and get busy getting comfortable.

    Bon Appétit, Y’all!

    Get the Recipe: Scalloped Potatoes

    P.S. Happy birthday, Mama! Thank you for teaching me to love food and cooking. I love YOU the most!

    Georgia-born, French-trained Chef Virginia Willis has cooked lapin Normandie with Julia Child in France, prepared lunch for President Clinton and harvested capers in the shadow of a smoldering volcano in Sicily, but it all started in her grandmother’s country kitchen. A Southern food authority, she is the author of Bon Appétit, Y’all and Basic to Brilliant, Y’all, among others. Follow her continuing exploits at VirginiaWillis.com.

  • FAN POLL: Vote for Your Favorite Competitor in the Chopped Ultimate Champions Finale 19 Sep 2014 | 12:00 pm FN Dish – Food Network Blog

    Chopped Ultimate ChampionsWe’ve watched as four returning champions have battled to earn a spot in the Chopped Ultimate Champions finale. One professional chef, one amateur cook, one hero cook and one celebrity have made it through. On the line is the biggest prize ever handed out on Chopped, $50,000 in cash and a new car. Each of these competitors has the potential to win, but only one will walk away the Ultimate Champion. Ahead of Tuesday’s finale at 10|9c, support your favorite competitor by voting for him or her in the fan poll.

    Take Our Poll
    What makes this tournament different from others is that one pro is facing off against three amateur cooks. But these amateurs wouldn’t have made it this far in the competition if they didn’t have what it takes to beat a professional. Who will win? Will it be the pro or one of the joes? Let us reintroduce the returning champions and contenders for the Ultimate Champion title:

    Giorgio on Chopped Ultimate ChampionsThe Part 1 Champion: Giorgio Rapicavoli, the Pro
    Since his last appearance on Chopped, Giorgio has opened two restaurants in Miami. He has been listed in Forbes’ 30 Under 30 for food and was named a James Beard Rising Star semifinalist. He brings an edge to the Chopped kitchen that will be tough to match for these amateur cooks.
    Relive the Episode in Photos
    Watch a Highlight Video
    Read Giorgio’s Interview

    Keith on Chopped Ultimate ChampionsThe Part 2 Champion: Keith Young, the Amateur
    Firefighter Keith is the main cook at his firehouse. He’s also a single dad; his wife passed away from cancer just before his first appearance on Chopped. Since then he’s gained even greater confidence as a cook and is even working on an upcoming cookbook.
    Relive the Episode in Photos
    Watch a Highlight Video
    Read Keith’s Interview

    Diana on Chopped Ultimate ChampionsThe Part 3 Champion: Diana Sabater, the Hero
    Cooking was an escape for Diana, who grew up in the Philly ghetto. She turned her life around for herself and her kids by becoming a police officer. Since her last appearance on Chopped, she’s left the force and is now a private chef and caterer, following her culinary dreams.
    Relive the Episode in Photos
    Watch a Highlight Video
    Read Diana’s Interview

    Laila on Chopped Ultimate ChampionsThe Part 4 Champion: Laila Ali, the Celebrity
    Boxer Laila made a name for herself, coming out from behind her famous father’s shadow. As an undefeated champion in the ring, she knows how to win a competition. Healthy cooking is the way she expresses herself at home, and she’s even working on a cookbook.
    Relive the Episode in Photos
    Watch a Highlight Video
    Read Laila’s Interview

    Don’t forget to tune in for the Chopped Ultimate Champions on Tuesday, Sept. 23 at 10|9c.

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