(Night)Shade in the Summer: Eggplant Parm + More

Eggplant Parmigiana
Eggplant is the season’s secret weapon for amping up a casual party spread. This late-summer star shines with possibility, ready to be used in main dishes, sides and salads. Master these eggplant-centric recipes and you’ll have it made in the (night)shade.

Slay the crowd with this extra-cheesy classic (pictured above) that blankets fried eggplant in bright tomato sauce and bubbling layers of Parmesan, provolone and mozz.

 

Spicy Hoisin Glazed Eggplant
Get props at the grill by adding char and chile-flecked glaze to the versatile vegetable.

Continue Reading (Night)Shade in the Summer: Eggplant Parm + More

  • |
  • Permalink

Chefs’ Secrets to Better Burgers

BurgersThink the best burgers are all about the beef?

Not necessarily.

James Beard Foundation’s Blended Burger Project promotes healthy and more-sustainable cooking by blending beef with mushrooms to decrease the meat content of the patties. This summer, Miami’s The Pubbelly Restaurant Group is spreading the word by inviting local chefs to dream up their own spins on the concept.

While they were at it, we asked the pros to help improve the standard summer grill-out with their expert takes on better burgers:

 

Master the Moisture
Ingrid Hoffmann is a master of sneaking vegetables into her patties. “I like adding moisture to the patty by using shredded onions, zucchinis and mushrooms,” she says. “Creating a barrier on the bread with a good mayo or avocado-based sauce also helps the bread not get soggy.” Even her condiments are far from standard, as Hoffmann uses pulled pork, mushrooms and jicama slaw to spice up her combinations. And once burgers are on the brain, not even stormy weather can get in her way: “If bad weather prevents you from grilling outdoors, one of my tricks is to take a large-size Pyrex, line the bottom with a layer of bread bottoms, then do layers of meat, cheese and other desired ingredients, place the tops of bread buns last and bake in the oven; easy for a one-dish wonder.”

 

Flip Out
Jose Mendin, Founding Partner and Chef of The Pubbelly Restaurant Group recommends an 85-15 ratio of meat to fat. “I like to use fatty meats in my blend such as brisket, chuck and sirloin,” he says. “Flip once; that way, the juices stay in the middle of burger. If you flip the burger too many times, you will end up with a messy, dried-out burger.”

Continue Reading Chefs’ Secrets to Better Burgers

  • |
  • Permalink

Raise the Steaks

Cowboy steak

Beef up your meat routine with a few easy updates to standard steaks.

  • Don’t have a grill? Opt for filet mignons. Tiffani’s easy filet mignon recipe lets the meat be the main ingredient, with roasted shallots and garlic, and a hint of Worcesthershire.
  • |
  • Permalink

Summer-Worthy Fruit Finales

Fruit Pizza

Step away from the store-bought sweets. Win the potluck this summer with Cooking Channel’s best recipes for summer desserts.

 

Blueberry cobbler

Plan a cast-iron blueberry cobbler that looks cool and tastes like a quick visit to Maine. The hulking scoop of vanilla ice cream is entirely optional.

Switch up the classic pie routine with Kelsey’s crowd-elating fruit pizza on a sugar cookie crust (pictured up top). The recipe calls for blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, kiwi and nectarines, but use apricots, pitted cherries, blackberries or whatever you have on hand to create tantalizing tangy designs over the lemony cream cheese base.

Peach PieOr plan to end the meal with classic key lime pie, strawberry pie, mile-high peach pie or one of these other easy, beautiful takes on summer’s best bounty.

  • |
  • Permalink

Grill Games

Ultimate BBQ Chicken

Win any backyard bash with sizzling ‘cue.

Smoke the competition with these saucy takes:

Get all the recipes.

  • |
  • Permalink

Travel You Can Taste: A Culinary Armchair Adventure

New Haven Style Clam Pizza

 

If spring break wasn’t in the cards this year, plan a recipe road trip instead.

This culinary journey hits the must-try defining dishes from all 50 states.

First stops:

Get all the recipes.

  • |
  • Permalink

Get Excited for Ramps

ramps

 

Fleeting, wild and desperately coveted, ramps are the spring allium equivalent of a teenage summer romance. Plucked by foragers throughout the East Coast and Midwest, ramps are a two-for-one bonanza of pickle-worthy bulbs and sauté-ready leaves.

If you happen to come across a bunch at an area farmers’ market, grab it and try these springy takes:

 

More of the ramp-age:

25 Ways to Use Ramps
In Season: Ramps

  • |
  • Permalink

Peep This: New Life for Easter Leftovers

Easter Dessert Peep-Za
Now that the Easter feast has finished, don’t let all the leftover candies and colored eggs go to waste. Transform those same-old-same-old seasonal staples into exciting snacks with these easy recipes:

Dessert Recipes That Use Up Easter Peeps
Deviled Egg Recipes

  • |
  • Permalink

Pump Up Your Passover Spread

Noodle Kugel

No matter that (unleavened) bread is banned from the Passover table; you can still create a flavor-packed spread worthy of this festival of freedom. From savory to sweet, these sumptuous dishes will make you forget all about flour:

Get all the recipes.

  • |
  • Permalink

Grilled Cheese Greatness

Grilled Cheese

Why is April National Grilled Cheese Month? We’d guess it’s because few things go better with April showers than grilled cheese and a companion dunking bowl of tomato soup. But regardless the reason, we’re stoked that the entire month is dedicated to the nostalgic favorite. Celebrate National Grilled Cheese Month with these old-school takes and new-school twists on the always-golden sandwich:

Get all the recipes.

  • |
  • Permalink