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Dinner Rush! Creamy Rigatoni with Squash, Sage and Pine Nuts

Move over, pumpkin spice latte — you’re not the only squash-themed edible that deserves the seasonal spotlight. Let’s clear a path for good ol’ reliable butternut. Is it the sexiest squash at the market? Hardly. But what it lacks in front-porch decor appeal it more than makes up for with a cute name and remarkable versatility.

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10 Worst Restaurant Fails

There’s a certain excitement in the air when a new restaurant opens up in the neighborhood. Finally, a reason to leave the house. However, not all eateries are worthy of you escaping from your bubble of Netflix and Facebook “Likes.” Some of them are downright failures in every conceivable way possible. Here are the worst of the worst of these sad experiments in eating displeasure, the biggest successes in failure-dom, if you will.

Photos: 10 Worst Restaurants in the World

For more restaurants that could benefit from the expertise of Cooking Channel chef, check out tonight’s new Restaurant Redemption at 10pm ET. Tonight Ching-He Huang reinvent the food and decor of a boring and predictable Chinese place called Pho-Barclay in New Jersey.

 

Sifted: Spicy Cornbread Biscuits, Pumpkin Gingersnap Ice Cream Cake + More

Spicy Cheddar Cornbread Biscuits

Hot Links We’re Loving:
  • When you’re faced with a bowl of steamy chili, it would be an injustice to choose between cornbread and biscuits. Dinner Was Delicious makes it easy with Spicy Cheddar Cornbread Biscuits, which are somehow both crumbly and flaky, not to mention loaded with sharp cheddar and jalapeno.
  • Want to put a new spin on pumpkin pie? Layer pumpkin and vanilla ice creams (with a jolt of pumpkin butter) into Shutterbean‘s easy Ice Cream Cake. Pound gingersnap cookies into crumbs for a speedy buffer layer.
  • We hate to say it, but the days of juicy, fresh tomato salsas are now over (unless you live in the tropics). Face the tomto-free music with these Fish Tacos by Turntable Kitchen. The recipe ingeniously creates a pomegranate salsa, ysubg the seeds out of in-season pomegranate for a juicy sweet-and-sour salsa condiment.
  • Think of Alsatian Flammkuchen as a bacon-, apple- and taleggio-topped take on pizza, though the dough is made with milk rather than water and results in a lighter, crunchier crust. Take a slice of Eat in My Kitchen‘s recipe with good, dry wine.
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This Cake Combines Every Dessert Into One Decadent Treat

One of the great struggles of existence is trying to decide what dessert to shove down your gaping maw. Apple pie sure is good, but so is chocolate cake and, oh, what about pumpkin pie? Life is hard! However, does it have to be? One bakery decided to just put every dessert in one big cake.

Three Brothers Bakery in Texas have just unveiled their take on the Turducken, the Pumpecapple Piecake. This beastly baked good contains layers of apple pie, pumpkin pie, chocolate cake and pecan pie. Additionally, there is caramel sauce and icing between every layer. Somehow the whole thing manages to stay aloft, which is a marvel unto itself.

The best part? You can order it for yourself here. The worst part? It costs $175 plus shipping. So you’ll have to save room in your wallet and your stomach.

Win a Copy of Eat More Better and Improve Your Existence

The conventional list of basic needs for physical well-being includes food, clothing and shelter. But so much of the innate wisdom and discourse around the first, and arguably most important, resource is saturated with inaccuracy and misnomers. Most people believe they have perfected eating — it being the first vocation they tackled after crying — but they really haven’t improved at it since that first day on Earth.

Do you consume burgers right-side up? You could be eating better. Do you fill a glass with ice cubes (that aren’t actually cube-shaped) and then pour liquid on top of them, or do you dump ice into a glass filled with liquid? Do you even pay attention to this stuff? You could be drinking better.

Eat More Better

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Meatless Monday: Leftover Baked Potato Soup

Meatless Monday is a global movement, a way of lifeEating less meat has been proven to reduce the risk of disease, curb obesity and has important environmental impacts, too. Will you join us in giving up meat, just for one day a week?

Soup season has officially started. And while we love our hearty chilies and simmered-for-hours stews as much as ever, they’re not exactly easy to throw together in a flash. This brilliant recipe has just 15 minutes of prep and uses leftover baked potatoes, which both cuts down on cooking time and lets you use things in your fridge. Its velveteen finish and comforting flavors are amplified with buttermilk, sour cream and Parmesan cheese. Garnish the bowl with chives just before serving — they’ll add a hint of onion-y flavor and make for a beautiful presentation.

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Traditional Fried Chicken Flies the Coop in Favor of the Sweet and Spicy

There are few foods revered for their simplicity and nostalgia-inducing power like crispy, juicy fried chicken. But on Thursday night, 17 prominent New York City-based chefs and restaurants proved that sometimes it pays to shake up an old classic when they served their unique takes on chicken to guests at Central Park’s Loeb Boathouse.

Held on the opening night of this year’s New York City Wine & Food Festival, the fourth annual Chicken Coupe (presented by Cooking Channel) was hosted and judged by fried chicken enthusiast Whoopi Goldberg. Goldberg had approached festival founder Lee Brian Schrager several years ago about dedicating an entire event to the universally loved dish, and this year, she wrote the foreword to Schrager’s book, Fried & True — so you might say they know a thing or two about anointing a winning bird.

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Pizza Vending Machines Finally Coming to America

The world of vending machines has not been exempt from the forward march of technology. Sure, you can plunk down a few coins and get yourself a bowl of fresh rice, but what about pizza? A vending machine called Let’s Pizza has been pumping out fresh pies for the past two years. Unfortunately, only Europe has had access to their warm, cheesy embrace. That’s all about to change, however.

A vending machine called Pizzabox is set to give America what it has always wanted, robot-made pizzas baked fresh for a measly five dollars a pop. These machines, built by the same folks who created the similarly-themed Burritobox machines, are even equipped with video conferencing capabilities so you can discuss how lonely you are with a customer service representative as your pizza cooks. Cool!

Pizzabox machines are currently in the testing phase and will begin an official rollout early next year. In the meantime, you’ll have to keep ordering pizzas the old-fashioned way, by clicking on your mouse a few times.

Beat the Wheat: Gluten-Free Apple Pie

gluten-free apple pie recipe

AKA THE APPLE OF MY PIE

My great-uncle Richard used to own acres and acres of orchards in Pennsylvania, and I fondly remember picking apples for him after school. I’d climb up the rickety, old ladder, an apple basket in hand, and shimmy out onto a branch to pull ripe fruit from the tree limbs. Uncle Rich taught me at an early age the differences among all the varieties — which ones were used for baking or for cider, and which could be eaten right off the tree, crisp and sweet. Oddly enough, despite having an unlimited supply of fruit, we didn’t eat a lot of apple pie growing up. It wasn’t until I was graduating college and moving in with my boyfriend that I figured I should learn to make pie. I failed at it many times back then — forgetting the sugar, using the wrong apples, forgetting to add the top crust — it’s a wonder I didn’t set our apartment on fire. That boyfriend became an ex-husband, and as I got better at relationships, I also got better at baking pies.

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Cooking with Gas: Where to Find Great Gas Station Food

Ah, the open road. You know you are really and truly on a road trip when you pull into your first gas station and start gorging on gross snacks. What if, however, those snacks weren’t gross? There are only so many Corn Nuts and pieces of beef jerky a person can eat, after all. Some gas stations across this great land of ours have eschewed the gross in favor of the gourmet. On tonight’s season premiere of Offbeat Eats with Jim Stacy, you’ll get to pull off the tourist-jammed highway to fuel up on some of these secret gas station restaurants.

You’ll have to tune in at 9:30pm ET to see Jim’s picks, but in the meantime, here are some of our favorite fancy-pants gas stations that serve fancy-pants grub.

The Best Gas Station Food

Tune in to Offbeat Eats with Jim Stacy at 9:30pm ET to meet the roadside rebel chefs and their quirky eateries that are off the beaten path.

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