As a tribute to Independence Day, the director celebrates July 4th in what he feels is the most “AMERICA way possible” — combining food and fireworks.
Watch as traditional 4th of July picnic foods like hot dogs, watermelon, and Jell-O explode to the National Anthem.
Ma told Foodbeast:
“This was a personal project and ode to my favorite 4th of July foods with fireworks I was never allowed to play with as a kid.”
The director revealed that the foods chosen were not only iconic to Independence Day picnics, but items that would also yield to beautiful explosions in slow motion.
“I had a small but brilliant team who made all this happen. Brett Long was our food stylist who worked in tandem with Mike Quattrocchi (our fireworks technician) to attach M80 and mortar fireworks to watermelons, potato salad, Jell-O molds and hot dogs for precision in our blasts. For the set decoration and propping, Chuck Willis and Melissa Stammer brought to life my vision for the tabletops, which was a kitschy Americana ’80s feel.”
Remember kids, DO NOT try this at home. As this behind-the-scenes pic shows, the explosions were very real.
Last year, baking maestro Dominique Ansel wowed the world with a watermelon soft serve, contained within in a real watermelon boat dotted with “seeds” made of chocolate. Drawing upon such ingenuity, Taco Bell just created a drink called the Watermelon Freeze that looks like the summer drink of 2018.
Photo courtesy of Taco Bell
The slushy drink itself consists of a watermelon-flavored freeze base. There’s also “seeds” on the inside of the drink, but they’re actually made out of candy. They’re on the larger side, but the freeze is going to come with a larger green straw that you can use to suck them out like tapioca pearls.
Taco Bell’s Watermelon Freeze isn’t exactly like Ansel’s soft serve, seeing as it’s not ice cream and doesn’t come with a hunk of fresh fruit. The play on seeds from both Ansel and the taco titan, though, are pretty cool visual tricks that make it look like you’re eating (or drinking, in Taco Bell’s case) a real watermelon.
It’s definitely going to be a visual stunner, but also is perfect to chill you down during the warm summer months.
Those wanting to snag the drink can find it now nationwide at $2.29 for a regular and $2.59 for a large. If you go between 2 and 5 p.m. for “Happier Hour,” the Watermelon Freeze’s price drops down to just a buck.
YouTuber Dave Hax is a walking encyclopedia of food hacks. With more than 3.3 million subscribers on his YouTube channel, it’s safe to say Dave knows what he’s talking about. He’s hacked everything, showing us the most efficient way to slice cherry tomatoes, and the fastest ways to peel potatoes.
For this week’s hack, Dave showed us how to hollow out a watermelon — simply by using a pineapple slicer. By cutting off one end, and placing the blade onto the fruit and twisting, Dave was able to extract a good portion of the watermelon, without damaging any of the fruit. Since watermelon is a very fragile fruit once removed from the rind, this is an excellent way to consider slicing watermelon.
Once the watermelon is hollowed out, the possibilities of what to put in it are essentially limitless. Add a mixture of juices for a tropical fruit punch, which a few shots of alcohol can turn into a refreshing summer cocktail.
Whatever you decided to do, just be sure to thank Dave.
Summer is in full force and we’re looking for any sort of way to cool ourselves down. This includes slicing up some juicy seedless watermelon. As you sink your teeth into the cool, refreshing fruit, have you ever wondered how a watermelon without those pesky black seeds is achieved?
True Foods created a video that explains exactly how one gets a watermelon completely free of pesky seeds thanks to a naturally occurring chemical called colchicine. While toxic in high doses, small amounts can create something quite magical.
What colchicine does is interfere with normal cell division. When colchicine is applied to watermelon seeds or directly to the plant itself, twice the amount of chromosomes will appear in the female flowers. Once fertilized with pollen from a normal flower plant, you get seedless watermelons.
Check out True Food’s video for a detailed explanation of the science behind seedless watermelons.
With all the wacky Starbucks concoctions hitting the US, we can’t help but feel overwhelmed deciding what to order on our next trip to the coffee shop.
On the other side of the world, Starbucks Japan just released an elegant new summer drink. Unlike the recent mythical creature-themed Frappuccino’s we’ve been saturated with, this tea has the advantage of simplicity on its side.
The new Shaken Watermelon and Passion Tea combines watermelon juice with Starbucks’ Teavana Passion Tea. The result is a combination of watermelon, papaya, mango, lemongrass, and hibiscus flower flavors over a mound of ice. Starbucks’ new drink is served with a slice of freeze-dried lime.
That’s it. There are no cupcakes or a mountain of multicolored whipped cream. Simple and refreshing.
Patrons in Japan can find the new drink at participating Starbucks locations now through the end of August. I wonder if there’s a way to recreate this drink here in the US?
A post shared by dominiqueansel (@dominiqueansel) on
Dominique Ansel never runs short on innovative, eye-catching dessert creations, so while this new watermelon soft serve should come as no surprise, it is still beautiful, and looks like something to put on your dessert bucket list.
Ansel’s bakery in Tokyo, Japan introduced their new What-a-Melon Soft Serve to commemorate its two-year anniversary. The house-made watermelon soft serve, with beautiful ripples accenting its beauty, is served inside a slice of watermelon, securing the cold treat like a wallet.
No, you’re not going crazy, those freakishly giant watermelon seeds aren’t real, but instead are chocolate versions. To finish off the refreshing treat, the bakery provides some sea salt to top the whole thing with, at your leisure.
We dug around and found 10 different things you can throw on the grill that doesn’t require any meat. Happy grilling, everyone!
Photo: Bush’s BBQ Boot Camp
Yeah, you could steam your veggies and they’ll probably be slightly healthier for you. OR you could throw them on a white-hot grill and get a satisfying char to them as smoke and fire come together to create one hell of a vegetable dish.
A little lemon juice and salt also goes a long way here, BTW.
Grilled corn is a pretty big staple when it comes to barbecue. The ears cook until about half of the kernels are browned and blackened. Then you just allow a pat of butter to melt directly onto the surface.
Growing up in a Vietnamese household, we were also partial to this green onion oil that we would just slather onto grilled corn. It was divine.
If you’re a fan of wood-fired pizza, you can actually create a makeshift wood-fire oven with your grill. If you’re worried about your pizza dough melting through the grate, however, YouTuber DaveHax came up with a solution to keep this from happening.
Simply take a cupcake tin and let your pizza sit on top of it as you grill. The dough should hold steady and the prevent any spillage. The result: a nice and smokey pizza deserving of your tastebuds.
Even though a thick mushroom cap can’t compare to a juicy cut of steak, it’s still a pretty decent alternative to meat. You can grill up a bunch of small white button mushrooms or a few slices of portobello at once.
Once they’re browned, drizzle a little olive oil on top with a tiny pinch of salt and you’re ready to cut into these aromatic fungi.
Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
They don’t call it grilled cheese for nothing. While the majority of the world makes their grilled cheese straight up on the stove top, culinary guru Alton Brown actually grills his grilled cheese.
While a tedious process for such a simple dish, Brown claims this will drastically improve your cheese sandwich. Check out the video above to see a step-by-step rundown.
Need a meatless substitute to get your protein fix? Slice up some tofu bricks and light them up. Just make sure to properly grease your grate, or your tofu will end up a sticky mess. Keep it cooking until it’s nicely charred and brown. The crispy exterior will add a nice texture that complements the soft interior of the tofu.
Avocados are one of the most addicting fruits around. We can throw them on pretty much anything and it’ll taste better. Recently, we had the pleasure of tasting oakwood-smoked avocados and it was one of the best variations of the fruit we’ve had the pleasure of putting into our mouths. If you don’t have the equipment and patience to smoke an avocado, however, grilling it may be the next best thing.
Photo: Bush’s BBQ Boot Camp
A different take on the classic chile relleno: simply mix together some corn, beans, peppers, and cilantro inside a hollowed out chile. Before adding the stuffing, char your pepper a bit to give it some flavor. Now you can fill it with your medley of ingredients and some cheese on top.
Toss it on the grill just long enough for your cheese to melt, encompassing your beans and peppers. It tastes pretty damn good.
As a quick and easy palette cleaners in between all the heavy BBQ items this summer, you can toss a few slices of watermelon directly onto the grill. You’ll only want them on long enough to get a nice sear and a smokey flavor. Sprinkle a little sea salt on your melon and enjoy a refreshing bite.
Looking for something a little sweet to close out your backyard BBQ? A while back, Foodbeast came up with three different desserts that could be made directly on any grill. We’ve got banana boat s’mores, chocolate churro quesadillas, and strawberry shortcake kebabs.
Check out the video to see how we whipped up these desserts.
There’s always a childlike fascination we have when it comes to foods being exposed to fiery substances.
In Beyond the Press’ newest video, they take a look at what would happen to two different types of foods when a white-hot tungsten cube is dropped on top of them. Because the melting point of tungsten is roughly 6,192 degrees F, it’s able to absorb an insane amount of heat while keeping it’s form.
The heated cube is first dropped on a piece of pork steak which instantly chars the cut of meat in seconds.
For dessert, the cube is then reheated and placed on top of a watermelon. Here’s where it gets fascinating. The watermelon’s rind pretty much withstands the majority of the heat from the cube. Beyond the Press’ crew had to break open the burnt groove created by the tungsten block, reheat it, and re-position it back on top of the watermelon. This time, it sinks right through the fruit, boiling everything inside in seconds.
A large part of the gratification we get from these videos is never having to handle the crazy temperatures ourselves, as well as the cleanup process afterwards.
Still, we can’t figure out why a watermelon can withstand such heat but always seems to break open when I fumble with my groceries. It’s mind-boggling.