Cool new tortilla chips, awesome topping combos and our expert nacho-building tips will take your snack to new heights!
Build it right: For perfectly balanced bites, distribute the fixings between the layers of chips, not just on top.
Cheese it up: Don’t skimp on the queso. Shredded cheese takes up lots less space once it melts, so pile it on!
Melt it down: 350 degrees is the ideal nacho-baking temperature for melting the cheese (but not burning the chips).
Chicken Verde Nachos (pictured)
Layer with shredded chicken, salsa verde, pinto beans, roasted poblano slices and shredded mozzarella; bake.
Top with pickled jalapenos, cilantro, sour cream with lime zest, chili powder and sliced radishes
Veggie Delight Nachos
Layer with roasted corn kernels, grilled sweet onion slices, shredded jack cheese and black beans; bake.
Top with guacamole, sour cream and salsa
Layer with shredded pepper jack, chopped tomatoes and chopped cooked bacon; bake.
Top with shredded romaine hearts, halved cherry tomatoes, more chopped cooked bacon and sour cream
Layer with shredded Colby jack, chopped pineapple, thinly sliced red onion and chopped pan0fried ham; bake.
Top with chopped parsley and chives
A Moroccan pantry staple, preserved lemons are traditionally made by brining the whole fruit in lemon juice with plenty of salt. After a few weeks, the citrus becomes super soft and entirely edible. If you can’t find preserved lemons at a specialty-food store, you can make them at home. To get the same results in a fraction of the time, try our genius test kitchen shortcut from our recipe for Moroccan Lemon-Herb Chicken Skewers. Removing the peel from the lemon and cooking it in a salty solution re-creates the intense flavor and satiny texture of slow-cured preserves in just 10 minutes.
HOW-TO: In a small skillet, combine 1/4 cup thin lemon peel strips, 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice and 1 tablespoon salt. Cover and simmer until the peel is tender, about 10 minutes. Drain. Tip: Use your preserved lemon to brighten up all sorts of dishes. Below are some of our suggestions.
MUDDLE with fresh lemon juice and simple syrup, then top with some club soda for a sparkling preserved lemonade.
FINELY CHOP with fresh parsley and garlic and toss with EVOO and pasta or with roasted carrots.
WHISK with white wine vinegar, EVOO and a touch of honey for a vinaigrette. Toss with leafy greens or a three bean salad.
PUREE with room temperature butter in a food processor. Serve with hot rolls or put a pat on top of grilled fish.
What does a “women’s” food magazine look like nowadays? While some of our readers might say “Every Day with Rachael Ray,” there’s a new(ish) mag in town devoted exclusively to celebrating women and the food that they make (and love). It’s called Cherry Bombe, if you haven’t heard of it, and this past weekend the magazine came to life in New York City at its first ever conference, deliciously called “The Cherry Bombe Jubilee.”
Photo courtesy of Cherry Bombe
The day-long event attracted all-stars from the culinary world (Alice Waters, Ruth Reichl, Marion Nestle, plus plenty of others), as well as inspiring ladies from other walks of professional life—makeup maven Bobbi Brown shared her cosmetics success story; Laurie David, producer of An Inconvenient Truth, promoted Fed Up, her upcoming film on the link between sugar and obesity.
Cherry Bombe’s founders, Claudia Wu and Kerry Diamond (who also starred in our April Southern brunch feature), curated panels that ran the gamut from food politics to entrepreneurship, and real talk prevailed. Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune in New York City and the Los Angeles restaurateur Suzanne Goin had a frank (and at times grim) appraisal of what it means to juggle motherhood and have a restaurant. Goin fought back tears when she recounted a story of her son telling his babysitter, “Some kids don’t have nannies, they have moms.” (Did we mention that the moderator, Bon Appétit’s Christine Muhlke, had her own toddler in her lap for much of the interview?!)
Challenges were identified, to be sure (“maybe we should change the model for what we consider success for women in food,” suggested former Gourmet editor Ruth Reichl in response to recent cries of inequality in the kitchen). But mostly, the discussions were encouraging for attendees, many of whom represented different parts of the food world today—cooking, academics, business ownership, farming, writing and more—and most of whom were women. “At 25 I didn’t actually know I could have a career in food,” said Reichl in a closing interview. And we all know how that turned out. If things have changed so dramatically since Reichl was 25, then think how much more they can change in the years ahead? To be discussed, perhaps, at next year’s Jubilee.
When it comes to giving back, there’s nothing we care more about than a food-related charity. Whether it’s focusing on nutrition education or making sure children in schools don’t go hungry, there are plenty of organizations who make it their mission to keep America well fed. Rachael Ray is a philanthropist herself and has her own non-profit, Yum-o!, which empowers kids and their families to develop healthy relationships with food and cooking. If you’re looking to get involved, we’re big fans of the two food-centric charities below. Well, what are you waiting for?
Photo courtesy of Share Our Strength
Working to “shine a national spotlight on the crisis of childhood hunger in America,” Share Our Strength strives to connect children with effective nutrition programs such as school breakfast and summer meals. The No Kid Hungry network is made up of private citizens, government officials, business leaders and others providing innovative hunger solutions within their communities.
As a part of their Single Barrel Dinner Series, Jack Daniels will host a charity dinner in NYC next week on March 26th to benefit Share Our Strength. Renowned chefs such as Food Network’s Chopped chefs Amanda Freitag and Aarón Sanchez, Ed’s Lobster Bar’s Ed McFarland and Daniel’s Mark Fiorentino will kick off the event with an intimate dinner and cocktail pairings. Tickets are limited–buy them here.
Photo courtesy of Recipe for Success
Recipe for Success provides hands-on nutrition education aimed towards preventing childhood obesity and encouraging long-term health. Each month, 4,000 children reap the benefits of the organization’s signature Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education initiative, which strives to help America’s youth understand, appreciate and eat their food.
In Houston? Join Recipe for Success on March 26th at Neiman Marcus for a Dress for Dinner fashion show and dinner with Nannette Lepore. Tickets for the fashion show or both the show and Dinner with the Designer are still available here. The best part: 100% of all ticket purchases will benefit the organization.
Buy a bag of frozen shredded spuds, then mix, pan-fry and top your way to the best-ever breakfast potatoes.
1. Lumberjack Special
Stir it in: chopped browned breakfast sausage
Top it off: butter, maple syrup
2. Spicy Ranchero
Stir it in: shredded pepper jack cheese, spicy salsa
Top it off: sour cream, chopped cilantro, squeeze of lime
3. Cheeseburger & Fries
Stir it in: browned ground beef, shredded yellow cheddar
Top it off: pickle slices, finely chopped onion
4. Veggie Confetti
Stir it in: shredded carrots, parsnips and beets, squeezed dry
Top it off: chopped fresh thyme, sage and parsley
5. French Onion
Stir it in: caramelized onions, chopped fresh thyme
Top it off: shredded gruyere
6. Everything but the Bagel
Stir it in: sliced red onion, capers
Top it off: sliced smoked salmon, cream cheese
By Nina Elder
Six weeks into the new year, you may feel a little less motivated to stick to some of those New Year’s resolutions. But all it takes is some smart decision-making and a little bit of effort to make healthy food exciting again. What could be easier than water?! It’s something you drinking regularly anyway, so let’s give it a facelift. Here’s how to stay hydrated and healthy.
Instead of floating a few wan slices of cucumber or orange in your H2O, puree the produce with a little water, strain it and mix in some more water. The refreshing result, known as agua fresca, will taste like a liquid distillation of the ingredient. Try it with any fruit or vegetable you love. Hydration just got a whole lot tastier!
Agua Fresca Fiesta
2 cups diced cantaloupe, pineapple or English cucumber, or 2 cups whole raspberries or pomegranate seeds
6 cups cold filtered water
Ice, for serving
1. Place the fruit (or vegetable) in a blender with 2 cups water. Blend on low speed until finely chopped but not pureed.
2. Pour the mixture through a fine sieve set over a bowl; press on the solids. Transfer to a pitcher; add the remaining 4 cups water. Skim and discard any foam that rises to the top. Pour the drink into ice-filled glasses, and enjoy all day long!
By Tula Karras
In our brand new March issue of Every Day with Rachael Ray, our Food Editor, Katie Barreira goes on a culinary journey to discover the ultimate recipe for scrambled eggs. She consults 12 of the world’s most renowned chefs for the best advice, from how high to heat the pan, to the perfect scrambling technique. Here are their results:
Wally Joe (chef, partner and general manager of ACRE restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee)
In an 8-inch nonstick pan, melt ½ tbsp. butter over medium-low heat. Crack 3 eggs into the pan and wait for them to set just slightly. Season with salt and pepper, then stir the eggs with a silicone spatula until they’re soft, creamy and not entirely cooked through, about 2 minutes.
In a bowl, whisk 3 large eggs until foamy. In a round-bottomed chef’s pan, melt about 2 tbsp. butter over medium-low heat. Add the eggs and whisk constantly until they start to cook, then switch to a silicone spatula. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then remove from heat. Add a pat of butter and season with salt and pepper.
In a bowl, use a whisk, handheld mixer or immersion blender to whip 4 eggs until uniformly mixed and pale yellow in color. In a double boiler, melt 1 tbsp. butter. Add the eggs and ¼ to ½ tsp. salt. Using a silicone spatula, stir gently and continuously for 30 seconds. Then stir every few seconds until the first curds form, about 1 minute. Lift and fold the curds into the liquid egg in the bottom of the pan. Continue to fold and stir until the eggs are about two-thirds cooked, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the top pan and stir until the curds appear to be sauced by the runny egg.
Anne Burrell (host of Worst Cooks in America on Food Network and is a best-selling author. Her second cookbook, Own Your Kitchen, was published in 2013)
In a bowl, using a fork, beat 4 eggs with 4 tsp. water and a healthy pinch of salt until it’s a homogeneous mixture. In a nonstick skillet, heat 2 tsp. EVOO over medium-low heat. Add the eggs and cook slowly, stirring occasionally with a silicone spatula. Cook until eggs are no longer runny but still really soft.
In a bowl, whisk 4 eggs with an honest pinch of salt. Add 2 tbsp. butter to a cold 8-inch nonstick skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until the butter foams but doesn’t brown, about 1 minute. Add the eggs and, using a wooden spatula, gently stir the eggs for about 30 seconds, making sure to scrape the edges and the bottom of the pan; this will ensure that the eggs do not cook too quickly from direct contact with the hot skillet. Then gently fold the eggs, creating big, soft curds. When the eggs are halfway cooked, about 1 minute, turn off the heat (this will prevent the eggs from overcooking and keep them moist), and continue folding until eggs are done to your liking. The total cook time should be 2 to 3 minutes.
Marc Murphy (chef-owner of Benchmarc Restaurants, which include Kingside, Landmarc and Ditch Plains in New York City, and he has appeared regularly as a judge on Chopped, Iron Chef America and other culinary shows)
In a bowl, season 6 eggs with 1 tsp. salt, ½ tsp. pepper and a sprinkle of fresh Parmesan cheese. Whisk until the whites and yolks are just blended. In a nonstick skillet, heat 2 tbsp. butter over low. Add the eggs to the skillet and, using a silicone spatula continuously stir eggs until just set, 4 to 6 minutes. About 1 minute before eggs are done, remove from heat so they don’t get too dry, and keep stirring for about 20 seconds.
Gordon Ramsay (Michelin-starred chef and owner of restaurants around the globe. He has five top-rated television shows that air in more than 200 countries and is the author of 27 books, including his autobiography, Roasting in Hell’s Kitchen)
Curious how the tough-talking Ramsay whips up his perfect scrambled eggs? Watch him in action right here.
Watch how our magazine’s leading lady scrambles up her flavor-packed eggs!
Michael Mina (award-winning chef and founder of the Mina Group, which has more than 20 restaurants across the United States)
In a bowl, whisk together 8 eggs. Add the eggs to the top of a double boiler set over boiling water. Use a silicone spatula to gently stir the eggs. Don’t be too aggressive—you want to let the eggs form into small curds as they cook. (You can add all sorts of fun ingredients during this stage, such as crème fraïche, chives, cheese, etc.). Cook the eggs until they’re soft and very moist, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and season with sea salt and pepper.
Frank McMahon (chef of Hank’s Seafood Restaurant in Charleston, South Carolina)
In a bowl, whisk 6 eggs with a pinch of salt and pepper. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, combine 2 tbsp. unsalted butter and 2 or 3 oz. whole milk over medium heat. Bring the milk mixture to a boil and immediately add the eggs, stirring to combine. As the eggs begin to set, use a silicone spatula to gently push the mixture back and forth using a snowplow-like motion to form fluffy egg mounds. Just before the eggs are completely set, remove the skillet from the heat. (The eggs will continue to cook off the heat.)
Elizabeth Falkner (James Beard Award–nominee and executive chef at Corvo Bianco in New York City. Her second cookbook, Cooking Off the Clock, was published in 2012)
In a bowl, whisk 4 eggs, a pinch salt and 2 tbsp. heavy cream. Heat an 8- or 10-inch nonstick skillet over high for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add 1 tbsp. butter and immediately turn the heat down to low. Add the eggs to the skillet and cook, stirring with a silicone spatula for 15 to 20 seconds. Add 1 tbsp. butter, a few cranks of pepper and another pinch salt. Continue to cook for about 20 seconds, until the eggs are still runny, but are setting up on the edges. Remove from the heat and stir the eggs for another few seconds.
Ludo Lefebvre (chef and owner of awarding-winning restaurant Trois Mec in Los Angeles)
In a bowl, beat 4 eggs. Season with salt and pepper. In a small saucepan, melt ½ tbsp. butter over low heat. Add the eggs and, using a wooden spatula, stir constantly, using a figure-eight motion, until the eggs start to get a little thick, about 5 minutes. Add 1 tbsp. cold butter and stir until melted. (This will stop the cooking and add extra creaminess to the eggs.)
Lately, we’ve been giving you lots of reasons to enjoy a nice, juicy orange, lemon or grapefruit (it is citrus season, after all). But how do we make those fruit segments look so darn beautiful? You, too, can upgrade your fruit salads, cocktails and desserts by cutting your oranges and grapefruits into pretty segments (“supremes” in chef lingo). Here’s how:
1. Prep It
Cut a small slice off the top and bottom, exposing some of the flesh. Stand the fruit up on one flat side.
2. Pare It
Cut from top to bottom along the curve of the fruit, removing the peel and bitter white pith.
3. Section It
Over a bowl, make a slice on each side of each segment along the membrane and use the knife blade to life out the freed fruit wedge.
4. Use It
in tons of delicious recipes, like the ones below!
The best guacamole is made with creamy fleshed Hass avocados at the peak of ripeness.
Here’s how to pick ‘em:
1. Look for a forest-green fruit. Darker skin means riper flesh.
2. Cradle it in the palm of your hand and gently squeeze. Guac-ready fruit will give slightly.
3. Flick off the stem. If it pops off easily and what’s underneath is bright green (brown means it’s overripe), you’re good to go!
Once your avocados are ready to be used…
Spread ‘em on toast with eggs for the perfect protein-packed breakfast.
Blend ‘em up with sweet ingredients for an Avocado Semifreddo.
Or, mix ‘em up with all sorts of ingredients for 11 different twists on guacamole!
Raw red or white onions should be the perfect balance of sharp and sweet, but sometimes their natural pungency can take over a dish (not to mention your breath!). Tame the burn by submerging sliced onions in an ice-water bath for about 15 minutes, which will remove the harsh natural sulfurs from the cut surfaces. Drain and pat dry before using. Bonus: The refreshing dip crisps them up, too!
Here are a few ways to use your mellowed out onions:
Mixed into our brand-new recipe for Tarragon-Grapefruit Salad.
Pup ‘em on top of our Lemon Tilapia with Garlic-Parsley Couscous.
In our Guacamole Salad alongside Hot-or-Not Grilled Sliced Chicken with Cheesy Polenta.