Every Day with Rachael Ray Staff

Big Fun with Little Spaces

Written on November 1, 2013 at 10:00 am , by

Petite Pad? Live large anyway with hosting tips form Jenna Mahoney, author of the new Small Apartment Hacks, 101 Ingenious DIY Solutions for Living, Organizing and Entertaining.

1. Turn your ironing board into a buffet.

Throw a pretty, floor-length cloth over that bad boy, push one side against a wall and you’ve got the world’s slimmest serving surface.

 

2. Use a rolling rack.

You can find cheapies at Target and Kmart and hang a few “starter jackets” to encourage guests to follow suit. (Even better if, as the rack fills up, it hides a workspace or cluttered corner.) Afterward, the rack folds up and slides easily under your bed.

 

3. Create small centerpieces with serious impact.

Turn juice glasses into vases (almost no surface area required)! The arrangements couldn’t be easier: Snip Gerbera daisies, peonies or other bold flowers just below the blossoms, and add one to three to each glass. P.S. The trick works just as well for mantelpieces.

 

By Abbie Kozolchyk

 

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Wait! Don’t Shoot!

Written on October 28, 2013 at 12:00 pm , by

It’s become as much a part of your restaurant routine as choosing tap or bottled: the ceremonial Instagramming of your meal. But faster than you can heart your friends’ food shots, restaurants—citing disruptiveness, among other things—are saying, “Drop the phone and step away from the table!” Still, even as some chefs are imposing photo bans, plenty of others are encouraging foodstagramming. Hear two New York chefs argue it out below.

 

 

Alex Stupak, chef at Empellón, says go for it:

 

- Immediate publicity is a boon to our business. As chefs, we now have the power to transmit ideas without needing to wait for traditional media. I can create a new dish that night and have guests transmit the idea to thousands of their Instagram followers.

 

- Essentially, the customer is always right. You can certainly ask people to stop doing what they want to do, but I think that letting them have their fun is more hospitable.

 

- These days if it’s not on Instagram, it’s almost as if it never happened. By communicating with these images, you can share your experience with friends, whether they’re with you at the table or far away.

 

Luke Venner, executive chef at BLT Fish, says it’s a no-go:

 

- These shots aren’t true representations of the dish. As a chef, you want to be able to dictate how the food looks when it’s photographed. Similar to when a celebrity is captured leaving the gym by the paparazzi, a dish isn’t going to look its best when it’s shot in a dim corner of the room with an iPhone.

 

- It’s disruptive. I completely understand that guests want to document a memorable dining experience, but the flash is distracting to other patrons.

 

- Sometimes you just need to live in the moment. Taste your food (while it’s still hot!) and take everything in. Forget the cameras. Be there and enjoy your experience with your friends.

 

Where do you stand? Tell us below in the comments!

 

Written by David Farley; Photography by Sam Kaplan

 

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French Press: Is It Worth It?

Written on October 26, 2013 at 12:00 pm , by

Whether you’re out for brunch or enjoying a lazy Sunday at home with friends, the French press has made its way to coffee tables and counters across America. But, is it really worth $20? Read on to see why we say: YES!

You can be your own barista

A French press uses water that’s at the boiling point (a temperature many electric machines can’t reach), which extracts more flavor from the coffee. Plus, you can customize how light or dark your joe turns out simply by adjusting the time the grounds steep.

 

You can take it anywhere

Without pesky plugs and not-so-eco-friendly filters in your way, this baby can easily travel with you on a camping trip or to a hotel — or it can sit on your desk so you don’t waste a single second between refills!

 

It’s not just for coffee!

Use a French press to brew loose leaf tea, make vinaigrettes (let herbs steep in the vinaigrette for a few hours, then plunge to strain) — or even press the lumps out of gravy!

 

Written by Lambeth Hochwald; Photography by David Lewis Taylor

 

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Rockin’ Dumplings And Rollin’ Sushi

Written on October 22, 2013 at 5:00 pm , by

The New York City Wine & Food festival features some of the top culinary events with marquee chefs, such as Burger Bash, Chicken Coupe, Tacos & Tequila and Grand Tasting. But if that’s not enough, there are also some serious late-night foodie happenings — just in case the 20 or 30 burgers we sampled at the Burger Bash wasn’t enough to satiate our hunger.

 

Such was the case at Rockin’ Dumplings And Rollin’ Sushi, the Asian food orgy hosted by Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto Friday night at The Harvard Club. The event started at 11 p.m. and featured dim sum-like nibbles including the aforementioned dumplings and sushi.

Kim Wood and Ming Tsai

 

Morimoto, as the host and shepherd of this event, clearly takes pride in assembling his friends together for the evening. It was a who’s who of Asian cooking, including Ming Tsai (Blue Ginger), Lee Anne Wong (Food Crawl with Lee Anne Wong), Joe Ng (RedFarm), Leah Cohen (Pig & Khao), Koji Kagawa (SushiSamba) and Michael Schulson (Izakaya Modern Japanese Pub).

Some of the standout dishes included Yellowtail Tartar Roll (SushiSamba), Pork and Scallion Wontons (Blue Ginger), Kona Kampachi (Sea Grill), Shrimp Seaweed Roll (Graffiti & Mehtaphor), Szechuan Lamb Wontons (Lee Anne Wong) and Black Bass Ceviche with Yuzu (Garces Group).

 

Dessert was not an afterthought either, as chocolate king Jacques Torres prepared sweet concoctions, such as green tea chocolate-covered strawberries. Torres had been at Burger Bash earlier, but seemed to really enjoy himself — as did we all — at Rockin’ Dumplings And Rollin’ Sushi.

Written by Jacquelynn Powers

 

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Written on October 22, 2013 at 2:46 pm , by

It was Burgerpalooza for the New York City Wine & Food Festival’s annual Blue Moon Burger Bash over the weekend, with thousands of people clamoring for designer buns. Celebrity chefs griddled their burgers with smoked cheeses and Nueske bacon for several hours at the event, hoping to take home the coveted People’s Choice Award of Best Burger.

 

To anyone who attended Burger Bash at Pier 92 on Friday night, it was no surprise that spiky-haired chef Guy Fieri would prevail. Not only was he serving up a decadent burger (loaded with applewood-smoked bacon, creamy four-cheese mac and cheese and garlic butter), but Fieri worked his stand all night. He posed for pictures, signed autographs and flirted with his fans—only if you dropped a chip into his voting bucket. It was a spectacle and certainly helped to elevate him to the winner’s circle.

 

 

The top prize, however, was not just allotted to Fieri. He tied with Josh Capon of Lure Fishbar and Burger & Barrel. Capon’s entry was more subdued than his competitors’. His burger featured caramelized onion and bacon jam, shaved pickles, American cheese and a secret sauce. Capon has won Burger Bash at NYCWFF several years running.

 

The judges, however, led by event hostess Rachael Ray, picked Le Rivage’s French Onion Soup Burger as their favorite, which paired the meat with stewed onions, béchamel and emmental cheese, served on a toasted Thomas English muffin.

The chefs cooked with Pat LaFrieda’s delicious beef for the burgers, all of which was washed down with copious amounts of Blue Moon beer, one of the night’s top sponsors. There were also giveaways from Delta Airlines, including free trips anywhere in the world.

 

For fans, it was an opportunity to sample burgers and meet their favorite chefs like Fieri, Ray, Bobby Flay, Katie Lee, Geoffrey Zakarian and Marc Murphy. While some of the chefs had bodyguards, they were still pretty accessible and posed for many pictures. It was a friendly environment with plenty of burgers and beer for all.

 

 

The most coveted item, however, was not a burger but the trucker-style hats Schnipper’s was giving out. By the end of the night, many of the well-heeled crowd of 3,000 festival-goers were sporting this iconic chapeau from Schnipper’s. Great marketing job guys!

 

Written by Jacquelynn D. Powers

 

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Blue Moon Burger Bash Bun-anza!

Written on October 19, 2013 at 11:10 am , by

Last night, the Blue Moon Burger Bash took place under the stars of New York City with Rachael Ray hosting over the carnivorous proceedings. Over 25 participants from around the country participated in this delicious burger competition, for the NYC Wine and Food Festival. Foodie stars who attended and made the rounds include Bobby Flay, Guy Fieri, Geoffrey Zakarian and, of course, Rachael Ray.
All of the chefs made good use of Pat LaFrieda’s signature blended beef. The main trends were house made marmalades, pickled onions and bacon everything. Yes, there was a lot of smoked bacon tonight!
While some of the sides seemed decadent (duck fat fries), everyone washed down their burgers with Blue Moon brewskis poured directly from the tap.
Guy Fieri seemed to be in the lead throughout the night. Perhaps because he manned his booth and posed for pictures with everyone who voteed for his Bacon Mac ‘n’ Cheese Burger!
Yes, it was a celebration. Or as Rachael herself said earlier, “I love burgers because they are friendly.” We think all 3,000 attendees would agree!
Written by Jacquelynn Powers

Technique Tuesday: Don’t Toss That!

Written on October 15, 2013 at 9:00 am , by

When we’re prepping and chopping veggies, we always run into those stems and ends that seem to be of no use. But the parts you throw away can be as good — and good for you — as the ones you don’t!

 

 

(Top Left) CARROT TOPS

Taste like: Peppery parsley

How to use them: Chop them and sprinkle on soups, salads or grilled meats as a garnish, or perk up your pesto by using them in place of basil.

 

 

(Top Right) BROCCOLI STEMS

Taste like: Broccoli, only milder, with a subtle cabbage flavor

How to use them: Add crunch to salads and stir-fries with chopped raw stems, or slow-cook them in soup or tomato sauce to bring out their sweet flavor.

 

 

(Bottom Right) RADISH GREENS

Taste like: A more pungent version of Swiss chard or spinach

How to use them: Sautee them with garlic and EVOO for a simple side; stir the greens into pasta until wilted; tuck them raw into grilled cheese sandwiches; or use them as a raw or cooked pizza topping.

 

(Bottom Left) CELERY LEAVES

Taste like: Concentrated Celery

How to use them: Sprinkle them into salads, or add them to chicken soup for a deep, vegetal flavor.

 

Written by: Marcia Simmons; Photography by: Avery Powell

 

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Over My Dead Body…

Written on October 4, 2013 at 11:08 am , by

…Is what my mom said when Patty Smyth—the singer/songwriter aptly known for “Goodbye to You”—attempted to repo our stove.

 

You see, the coastal Brooklyn house my mom bought in 1976 had long been a second home to Patty, whose stepmother, Cookie, had grown up there. The stove that came with the place was indeed a beauty: the same vintage Chambers model Rach used to have on her set, except ours was powder blue, not yellow.

 

Every once in a while Patty would swing by the house to see how the stove was doing. Well, to say hi to the family, too, but mostly to make sure her cherished heirloom was still around.

 

Once, when I was in college, my mom called me and said, “John is here and wants the stove.”

Me: “John who?”

Mom: “Johnny Mac.”

Me: “MacEnroe?”

Mom: “Yeah—and I told him over my dead body.”

 

Yes, she summarily shot down the era’s most famous tennis player—who also happened to be Patty’s husband.

 

My mother loved that stove. Never mind that we had to light the burners with a match. Or that the oven wasn’t spacious enough to hold a decent turkey (sort of crucial when you host Thanksgiving every year). Or that the merest breeze would kill the pilot light along with the burners, and we’d have to wait at least 30 minutes before turning the gas back on—or risk getting blown off our feet by a gas surge (believe me, I know from personal experience).

 

Our beloved stove

 

Despite all the stove’s shortcomings, her love for it was unflinching, no matter how much her culinary-minded children pleaded for an upgrade.  After all, this stove had been her trusty sidekick throughout her adult life. Those burners heated the first meal she made as a homeowner—and the water for my first bottle.  That oven helped us celebrate every conceivable family milestone—and achievement, big or small.

 

But after this 36-year love affair, everything changed in an instant: The night Sandy hit, five feet of water swallowed the stove whole.

 

You know the rest of this story by now—about the devastation and loss that reached far and wide. And while the household essentials were comparatively minor casualties, my mother couldn’t bear to part with the stove. She often said it had a soul; the prospect of discarding such a beloved being broke her heart.

 

Our kitchen post Sandy

 

Now, even after her herculean mold-, rust-, grime- and debris-removal efforts, the poor thing is still “resting” outside while we search for ever more advanced resurrection methods.

 

In its place sits a shiny new oven big enough to hold a 40-pound turkey—much to her children’s delight. But somehow, mom hasn’t quite gotten used to the idea that knobs alone can fire up burners.  No matches required.

 

Our new kitchen

Patty did stop by the house after Sandy to make sure we were okay. And of course, to check on the Chambers. She was saddened by its streaks and corroded innards, but relieved it was still there.

I’ve urged my mother to pay it…backward and relinquish the stove to Patty. And you know what? Mom’s almost there. But I have a feeling that “almost” could last for a while.

 

Written by Chris Jette, Meredith senior marketing manager

 

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Tailgate Tour Time!

Written on September 4, 2013 at 5:16 pm , by

It’s that time of year again! The Tailgating Tour has hit the road. Stop by our tent in the cities listed below to for a game-day experience like you’ve never had!

 

 

TAILGATE TOUR DATES

Week 1: Atlanta on August 31st

Week 2: OKC on September 7th

Week 3: Austin on September 14th

Week 4: Notre Dame on September 21st

Week 5: Arkansas on September 28th

Week 6: South Carolina on October 5th

Week 7: Kentucky on October 12th

Week 8: Clemson on October 19th

Week 9: Ohio on October 26th

Week 10: Jacksonville on November 2nd

Week 11: Michigan on November 9th

Week 12: Auburn on November 16th

Week 13: LSU on November 23rd

Week 14: Gainesville on November 30th

Learn more about The Tailgate Tour here.

Rocca Stars in the Kitchen

Written on September 4, 2013 at 10:51 am , by

Guess who’s here to dish on cooking with the nation’s most beloved nannas (and poppas)! Daily Show vet Mo Rocca, whose Cooking Channel series, My Grandmother’s Ravioli, kicks off its second season this month.

By David Farley

 

Q: How did the show get its name?

A: My granmother made pasta from scratch, and her ravioli were big pockets stuffed with ground beef, spinach and garlic with a light tomato sauce. They were delicious – and large and light and delicate. So when Nora Ephron was a guest on my NPR show, Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!—and I was talking about the inspiration for my new cooking show—she pointed out that My Grandmother’s Ravioli was the obvious name. I loved going back to the network people to say not only did I have a great name, but Nora Ephron helped me come up with it.

Q: How do you decide who will be featured?

A: We want people who really care about cooking. They also have to have a good personality, but not in that crazy reality TV way. These are people you actually want to be related to.

Q: The show has you cooking with grandmas from everywhere. Have you found a universal ingredient?

A: Garlic. Everyone uses it. In fact, my own Italian grandmother’s apartment always smelled like garlic.

Q: What’s been the biggest surprise?

A: Almost none of the grandmothers measure ingredients. And grandfathers measure even less! They’re extreme non-measurers!

Q: Beyond recipes, what have you learned?

A: How to cut onions without crying. From a Pakistani grandfather, actually, I learned that you should drink a glass of red wine before cutting them. Though he may just have wanted an excuse to drink wine.

 

 

Explore more of our celebrity interviews here.