AKA Let the Good Times Casserole
When you write about food for a living, people assume you make glamorous roast duck with fancy vegetables every night for dinner. While I can’t speak for every food writer, I’ll let you in on a little secret: I don’t cook fancy food that often, and I eat a lot of casseroles. Sunday nights, you’ll find me in the kitchen putting together some sort of casserole for dinner that night, or for lunch and dinner for the next few days. Casseroles are easy. They’re awesome. They freeze well, they reheat easily and they offer comfort after a hectic day. Casseroles are melty and delicious and hearty.
Continue Reading Beat the Wheat: Gluten-Free Cheesy Kale, Sausage and Rice Casserole
Although you may remember them as the bane of your childhood existence, Brussels sprouts are the slightly smaller, but equally delicious, cousin of cabbage. Forget whatever you may have thought about Brussels sprouts in your youth and give them another try. When in doubt, pair sprouts with pork; whether it’s bacon, pancetta or even chorizo, no one will be able to resist your bacon-y Brussels sprouts.
On their own, Brussels sprouts are quite the superfood: They’re low in calories, yet packed with vitamin C, fiber and even protein.
Brussels sprouts grow on a long branch, and although it’s a shock at first glance, a stalk of Brussels sprouts is easy to manage; carefully cut off the individual sprouts and peel off the first layer of leaves before rinsing and cooking. Alternatively, purchase trimmed Brussels sprouts for a jump-start in the kitchen.
Thanksgiving is the perfect occasion to showcase your newfound love for sprouts. If you’re still curious about sprouts, check out this Brussels sprouts tutorial, then get cooking. Your mother would be so proud.
- If you’ve never made Brussels sprouts (or have never truly enjoyed them), start out with simple Roasted Brussels Sprouts.
- Deep-fried Brussels Sprouts are tossed with a miso-sake sauce and crispy bacon for an Asian take on classic flavors.
- Brussels sprouts are often roasted, but they can also be cooked on the stovetop. Get them nice and brown, then add water, stock or white wine to cook them the rest of the way. Try the method out with Tiffani Thiessen’s Balsamic-Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta (pictured above).
- Bal Arneson’s Indian Brussels Sprouts are tossed with garlic, ginger, coriander seeds, smoked paprika and fenugreek leaves for a fully flavored side dish.
- Anne Burrell’s simple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon are finished with toasted pine nuts and a bit of shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Continue Reading 25 Ways to Use Brussels Sprouts
By now, everyone knows the iconic look of an Apple Store. There’s the angular steel, the square shape and the millions of too-expensive computer products. However, a group of artists and fruit enthusiasts in England have taken it upon themselves to design an Apple Store and fill it with actual apples, instead of tablets and phones.
The Real Apple Store is currently on display at the 1,000 year old Borough Market, which predates the iPad by a sweet 995 years. Inside visitors will find over 1,000 varieties of apples, which is a sweet 995 more than the average person has heard of. You can also taste any of them, which is the real boon here. Finally, you can get your mouth around that one variety of apple your dad hasn’t stopped talking about since 1977.
Unfortunately, this exhibit will only be installed for a limited time, probably until the apples go rotten.
Let’s be serious. The sides are the real stars of the Thanksgiving dinner table. Once your plate is piled high with mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing and cranberries, the bird is hardly the main event.
We’ve rounded up our go-to picks for each category, but tell us: What’s your favorite Thanksgiving side dish? Vote in the comments as we give thanks to our picks.
1. Mashed potatoes are comfort food royalty. Dress them up for the Thanksgiving holiday with truffles and cheese (pictured above), and you may earn VIP spud status for life.
Continue Reading Fall Fest: Winning Thanksgiving Side Dishes
Side Show which opened to critical acclaim in New York City on Monday night, is everything a Broadway musical should be. Centered around two joined-at-the-hip twins, Violet and Daisy Hilton, the glamorous, thrilling, epic story follows the duo’s quest for true love and acceptance through the spectacle of fame and the scrutiny of the spotlight.
To celebrate its opening, Cooking Channel teamed up with Zac Young, resident Musical Maestro of Sweets and Executive Pastry Chef at David Burke Fabrick, to create a Sweet Show to match the grandeur of the twins’ incredible Freak Show (you have to see it to understand). Exotic and enticing, playful and full of passion, these recipes — cleverly named for big Side Show numbers — are sure to stop the show at your next holiday gathering. And just like the Hiton twins, what makes these dessert recipes just a little different is what makes them extraordinary.
Continue Reading Side Show on Broadway: “Come Look at The Sweets”
Believe it or not, they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving over there in jolly old England. It must be something about those two wars or whatever. That doesn’t mean, however, that they don’t enjoy the sublime tastes of Thanksgiving food. They just tweak it a bit. How much? Well, here are some turkey- and stuffing-flavored doughnuts.
The manufacturer behind these poultry-ish treats is a grocery chain called Tesco, who are known for a series of bizarre doughnut variations appropriately called Weirdoughs. In addition to this turkey and stuffing concoction, they also sell bacon doughnuts, cheese and onion doughnuts and, of course, salt and vinegar doughnuts. They are likened to doughy, soft potato chips, so as not to tax the English’s already dilapidated teeth (zing!)
If you find yourself wandering around England next week, pick up a pack and enjoy Thanksgiving in soft, doughy form. You could probably scour the Internet and find some as well.
Turducken, Veggieducken, Cherpumple, Pumpecapple — no matter if you’re preparing main course or dessert, Thanksgiving’s overstuffed, multi-layer creations are guaranteed to get you tongue-tied and make a statement on your dinner table. Channel the hybrid nature of these behemoth creations with this recipe for Cheesecake-Pumpkin-Pecan Pie. Just like our Veggieducken, which packs sweet potatoes and stuffing into a squash, this three-in-one masterpiece combines a flaky pie crust, a smooth cheesecake, custardy pumpkin and a gooey, sweet pecan filling all into one jaw-widening dessert. You’ll need to make each component separately and freeze each layer to achieve the perfect layers. Once it has baked off and the nutty pecan pie topping has cooled, crack into the crust and cut a piece of what we’re calling the chumpcan pie – it’s triple shot of Thanksgiving-dessert heaven.
For more ways to recreate some of Thanksgiving’s famous hybrid mains and desserts, check out Cooking Channels more celebrated Franken-dishes:
Whether you want to make a truly homemade pumpkin pie or gussy up morning toast, spice blends can fill a lot of needs in the kitchen with just a few shakes. A lot of these are great add-ins to light sour cream or plain Greek yogurt to make a flavorful dip for veggies. They’re also an excellent, portable gift idea.
Pumpkin Pie: With Thanksgiving around the corner, this is the perfect spice blend to whip up now. Use it not just in pie, but in muffins, oatmeal and pancakes.
Apple Streusel: Crushed dried apples infuse this blend with a strong apple flavor. Try it sprinkled on popcorn; stirred into sour cream or yogurt as a sweet dip for fruit; or sprinkle it on oatmeal, ice cream, pancakes or toast.
Everything Bagel: Addicted to the salty, savory flavor of everything bagels? Make this spice blend (pictured above) and use it to add flavor to a baked potato or pasta dish, coat a chicken breast, top a salad, or sprinkle over potato pancakes. It’s even great on pretzels.
Continue Reading Make Your Own Spice Blends
Photo by Peter Pham
Society has finally come to this. After a year filled with ramen burgers and creepy donut hybrids, here comes a frankenfood sourced from a burrito and a bowl of Vietnamese soup.
California cafe Komodo — which also doubles as a food truck and catering service — has just unveiled the appropriately named Phởritto, a burrito stuffed with to the gills with pho. Now, before you start worrying about spilling stock all over your shirt, the burrito is delightfully free of wet stuff. It does, however, feature rib-eye steak, cilantro, bean sprouts, onions, Thai basil, jalapeño, lime juice and, of course, pho noodles. They even give you some hoisin sauce and sriracha for dipping.
This is only available in California, but those of you made hungry by this post can always do a double take-out jaunt and do a little frankfooding of your own.
What is the holiday season for if not to step back, reflect on the past year and reconnect with those you love. Since at this time of year calendars seem to magically swell with parties, dinners and casual get-togethers, make your gathering as fabulously effortless as possible with a meal that feeds a small group and a full house alike.
The trick to entertaining with style is to prepare a dish for your guests that is delicious, showstopping and requires as little cleanup as possible. This dish, my friends, is the total package.
Continue Reading Dinner Rush! Chicken Legs with Roasted Grapes and White Cheddar Grits