Blog Posts by Blue Ribbon Hunter

  • Bug Cuisine

    Could eating bugs be the next big food trend? Well that's what professor and bug chef Marc Dennis thinks! He invited us to a very special cooking lesson where we learned how to make dishes with silk worms, wax worms, crickets, and grasshoppers. Once we got past what Marc refers to as "the ick factor" it was actually pretty interesting to learn about and try a cuisine that could fundamentally improve world health, nutrition, and sustainability. One of our favorites was the "Chocolate Chirp Cookies" and Marc was nice enough to share the recipe.

    Chocolate Chirp Cookie



    · 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, softened

    · 1/2 cup sugar

    · 1 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

    · 2 eggs

    · 2 tsp. vanilla extract

    · 2 3/4 cups (12 oz) all-purpose flour

    · 3/4 tsp. sea salt

    · 1 tsp. baking soda

    · 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

    · 2 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

    · 2 cups pre-roasted crickets (any size cricket will do - keep in

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  • Tips and Tricks for Great Barbecue

    It's almost summer and you know what that means - barbecue season! That's why we traveled to Charlotte, North Carolina for the Beer, Bourbon, and BBQ festival to bring you tips and tricks for delicious barbecue straight from the grill masters themselves. Here are some of our favorites:

    Use a 2:1 Salt to Sugar Ratio for Your Rub - Sticking with the rule to keep it simple, our NC Hall of Fame Pit Master, Bill Eason, recommends a simple rub that is two parts Lawry's Seasoned Salt and one part brown sugar.

    Use a Vinegar-Based Sauce - This can be a controversial tip since different regions have different (and very strong) opinions on the best sauce. At this particular festival they loved the vinegar-based sauce, which is just a simple mixture of vinegar, sugar, and pepper.

    Double Dip Your Meat - The sauce is definitely a highlight of great barbecue, so let's get the most out of it! Rather than only saucing your meat once while it is on the grill, dip it one last time in fresh

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  • Waikiki SPAM Jam

    Mini Maple Spam DoughnutsWhen referring to email, nobody likes spam, but we came to find out that not a lot of people appreciated the canned meat either-- until we got to Hawaii that is! We traveled to Waikiki Beach on the island of Oahu in Hawaii for the 10th Annual SPAM JAM where people came from all over to celebrate SPAM, and support the Hawaii Food Bank! We tried everything from SPAM Ice Cream, to SPAM Musubi, to SPAM Lettuce Wraps and boy were they good! The highlight was meeting the winner of the Hormel Blue Ribbon Recipe Competition, Jason Munson, who let us try his award winning creation: Mini Maple SPAM Doughnuts. If you like to mix sweet and savory flavors, then this dish is for you.


    Makes 24 mini doughnuts


    • 1 cup all purpose flour
    • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1/3 cup buttermilk, plus one tablespoon
    • 1 egg
    • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
    • 1 (12-ounce) can SPAM
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  • The James Beard Awards

    The James Beard Awards are often referred to as the Oscars of the food industry. During these awards, chefs, restaurateurs, and other food professionals from all over the country are recognized for their contributions to the community. Among the many awards presented during the ceremony, two of the most anticipated are Outstanding Chef, and Outstanding Restaurant.

    This year the nominees for Outstanding Chef were:

    David Chang of Momofuku in New York, NY

    Gary Danko of Restaurant Gary Danko in San Francisco, CA

    Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park in New York, NY

    Paul Kahan of Blackbird in Chicago, IL

    Donald Link of Herbsaint in New Orleans, LA

    Nancy Silverton of Pizzeria Mozza in Los Angeles, CA

    The nominees for Outstanding Restaurant were:

    Balthazar in New York, NY

    Blue Hill in New York, NY

    Highlands Bar and Grill in Birmingham, AL

    Vetri in Philadelphia, PA

    Boulevard in San Francisco, CA

    Congratulations to Daniel Humm of Eleven

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  • Staggering Facts About Vegas Buffets

    Las Vegas is like a playground for adults. Whether you are going to sightsee, gamble, or party with the best of them, Vegas is a place where no one holds back; and that is certainly true of the food. Some of the most famous restaurants in the world can be found in Las Vegas, but the classic Vegas buffet is bigger and better than ever and you won't believe what you can get for your dollar.

    Our first stop was the buffet at the world famous Bellagio Resort. Executive chef Edmond Wong took us through the buffet and we were shocked to hear how much food they go through a day. Check it out:

    4,000 people are served per day

    12,000 dirty dishes are washed per day

    1,400 pounds of Alaskan King Crab legs are consumed per night

    2,000 pounds of shrimp are consumed per day

    500 pounds of salmon is consumed per day

    500 pounds of chocolate is consumed per day

    700,000 pounds of sugar is consumed per year

    And we couldn't leave Vegas without visiting the cheapest

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  • The World Pizza Games

    Blue Ribbon Hunter traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada for the International Pizza Expo where pizzaiolos from all over the world gathered to show off their pizza making skills. We watched as pizza makers from Italy, Japan, England, and the U.S. competed in three main categories: Largest Dough Stretch, Longest Dough Spin, and Acrobatic Dough Tossing. So this is what our local pizza shops are doing on slow nights…

    Blue Ribbon HunterBlue Ribbon Hunter

    Largest Dough Stretch

    During this game, pizzaiolos have five minutes to stretch an eighteen-ounce dough ball as large as they can. They can use their tables or throw it in the air and may use their hands and elbows to help them stretch the dough. Any holes larger than a dime must be patched up.

    TIP: Warm dough stretches better, so find ways to warm the dough as you stretch for a competitive edge.

    WINNER: Mario Sigmorile, Pizzeria Del Centro, Italy

    Longest Dough SpinLongest Dough Spin

    Longest Dough Spin

    In this competition, pizza makers must spin an eighteen-ounce dough above their head

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  • 5 Foods to Spice Up Your Sex Life

    Foods that spice up your sex lifeWe have all heard about aphrodisiacs, but which ones really work? We sat down with food historian Francine Segan at the Museum of Sex in New York City who told us about five aphrodisiacs that can help us spice things up.


    Stop worrying about your breath, and start heating up your sex life! Garlic contains the enzyme nitric oxide synthase which increases blood flow to the sex organs.

    Deer Antler Tea

    No, this is not a special brand of tea, it is actually a tea made out of thinly sliced deer antlers. This aphrodisiac dates back to ancient china where it was believed that if you have an issue with something being limp, you should eat something long and hard to remedy it. Deer antlers became a popular choice due to the virility of a buck, so whether this aphrodisiac is psychological or scientific, it is an aphrodisiac that has been used by men for centuries.


    Besides being incredibly delicious, chocolate is also a powerful aphrodisiac with a long

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  • The World's Most Expensive Hot Dog

    Blue Ribbon HunterNew York City is famous for its skyline, Broadway shows, and of course, its hot dogs, so it comes as no surprise that it is the home of the most expensive hot dog in the world. The hot dog, also known as the "Haute Dog", can be found in Manhattan's Upper East Side at Serendipity 3. This pricey snack is made up of a twelve-inch long pure beef frankfurter that is grilled in white truffle oil. It is then placed in a salted-pretzel bun imported from Germany that has been slathered with white truffle butter. To top it off, they add duck fois gras with black truffles, caramelized Vidalia onions, heirloom tomato ketchup, and Dijon mustard with more, you guessed it, black truffles. How much you ask? This haute dog can be yours for a cool $69.00, but don't forget to order it 24 hours in advance.

    But, is it worth the sixty-nine bucks? We hit the streets with samples of the haute dog and street vendor hot dogs, to see what the New Yorkers had to say. We had people compare the hot dogs

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  • Behind the Scenes of an Adventurous Eating Club

    We felt honored to be invited to dinner with the Gastronauts, an adventurous eating club based in New York City and Los Angeles, for their six-year anniversary. We knew it was going to be an evening to remember, but we had no idea what they had in store for us.

    When we arrived at Parish Hall in Brooklyn, New York we were greeted by a friendly staff, hustling and bustling to set tables and organize bottles of wine at the newly constructed bar. Excitement was in the air as this was the first event for the new restaurant that still had yet to put a sign out front. Chef Evan Hanczor of Pig and Egg took us behind the scenes of the kitchen to give a sneak peak of the menu for the evening.

    Evan talked us through the five courses, which featured black bear tenderloin, water buffalo meat, and water buffalo milk. But the real surprise was when we found out we would be served Civet Cat Coffee, or Kopi Luwak. Besides being the most expensive coffee in the world, it is most infamous for

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  • Recipe Wins $1 Million at Pillsbury Bake-Off

    Out of tens of thousands of submissions, one recipe rose to the top and won the one MILLION dollar grand prize! And the winner is…

    Pumpkin Ravioli with Salted Caramel Whipped Cream

    By Christina Verrelli of Devon, Pennsylvania

    Prep Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

    Start to Finish: 1 hour 10 minutes

    Servings: 12

    4 tablespoons LAND O LAKES Butter, melted

    2 packages (3 oz each) cream cheese, softened

    ½ cup canned pumpkin

    1 LAND O LAKES Egg Yolk

    ½ teaspoon McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract

    ¼ cup sugar

    5 tablespoons Pillsbury BEST All Purpose Flour

    ½ teaspoon McCormick Pumpkin Pie Spice

    1/3 cup Fisher Chef's Naturals Chopped Pecans, finely chopped

    2 cans Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations refrigerated seamless dough sheet

    1 cup heavy whipping cream

    1/8 teaspoon salt

    5 tablespoons Hersey's caramel syrup

    4 tablespoons McCormick Cinnamon Sugar

    1. Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Brush 2 large cookie sheets with 2 tablespoons of the

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