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Take This Dish and Twist It

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Make it quick, make it delicious--but always make it with a healthy dose of creativity! This is the delightful way George Duran, who is part comedian, part trained chef, and star of Food Network's Ham on the Street and The Secret Life Of, approaches cooking. In his first-ever cookbook, George shares his favorite recipes for easy-on-the-cook comfort foods with a twist, including recipes such as Deep-Fried Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Banana Split Pancakes. BLT Hot Dogs, and Tex-Mex Lasagna. The unusual twist comes...
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Overview

Make it quick, make it delicious--but always make it with a healthy dose of creativity! This is the delightful way George Duran, who is part comedian, part trained chef, and star of Food Network's Ham on the Street and The Secret Life Of, approaches cooking. In his first-ever cookbook, George shares his favorite recipes for easy-on-the-cook comfort foods with a twist, including recipes such as Deep-Fried Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Banana Split Pancakes. BLT Hot Dogs, and Tex-Mex Lasagna. The unusual twist comes from ingredient combinations you may never have considered, but are absolutely delicious! Are you ready to get new, creative meals and desserts on the table fast? Then let's get cooking!

Pepperoni Pizza Soup

PREP: 15 minutes / COOK: 6 minutes / BROIL: 3 minutes / YIELD: 4 servings

Finally, liquid food lovers everywhere can rejoice. America's favorite pizza is ready for sipping! Remember to try different "toppings" as well, such as mushrooms, onions, and sausage!


  • 2 cans (10.75-ounce) condensed tomato soup
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups dried elbow macaroni (or other short dried pasta such as ditalini or alphabets)
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed
  • 1/3 cup diced pepperoni
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 ounces)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (4 ounces)
  • Dried oregano

1) Preheat the broiler. In a large pan put the tomato soup, water, and garlic; bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the macaroni, green onion, oregano, and pepperoni; cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until the macaroni is almost done. Pour the soup into4 oven-proof bowls. Top each with 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup cheddar cheese, and some oregano. Broil for 3 to 5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned. (Or serve the soup in a small round, crusty loaf of bread. Cut the top off the bread and scoop out the insides. Fill with soup, top with the cheeses, and broil as directed above.)

Stuffed Lasagna Rolls

PREP: 25 minutes / COOK: 7 minutes / BAKE: 20 minutes / YIELD: 5 to 6 servings

Many of us struggle with life's conundrums. Why are we here? Is this all there is? What do you do with the six sheets of lasagna pasta that are left over in your pantry? You're on your own with the first two, but I have the perfect solution for number three: Make some stuffed lasagna rolls!


  • 12 no-cook lasagna noodles
  • 2 to 3 hot Italian sausages
  • 1 1/2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or 3/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1) In a large pan of boiling, salted water cook the lasagna noodles for 2 to 3 minutes or until they are just soft (don't overcook them). Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain on paper towels.

2) Remove the casings from the sausages. Crumble the meat into a nonstick skillet. Cook over high heat about 5 to 6 minutes or until browned, breaking up the sausage with a wooden spoon. Remove from the pan and set aside. In a bowl mix the ricotta, Parmesan, egg, basil, salt, and pepper until combined. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a 13 x 9 two-inch lasagna pan evenly spread half of the tomatoes.

3) To assemble the lasagna rolls, place a lasagna noodle on a work surface with the short side toward you. Put 2 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture on the bottom half of the noodle; add 1 tablespoon of the cooked sausage. Roll noodle starting at the bottom and place in the lasagna pan. Prepare the remaining noodles in the same way, lining them up in the pan. Spread the remaining tomatoes over the rolls and top with the mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until the cheese is bubbling and lightly browned.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Now the host of two popular Food Network shows, Ham on the Street and The Secret Life of..., Duran previously did comedy sketches on radio and worked in production on MTV's House of Style; he also hosted a French television cooking show after attending culinary school there. His first book, which features a lively, collage-style format, presents 100 recipes that he describes as twists on favorite comfort foods, from Pepperoni Pizza Soup to Caesar Salad Summer Rolls. There are lots of tips, suggestions, and anecdotes about Duran's adventures in the culinary world. Expect demand.
—Judith Sutton

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780696239434
  • Publisher: Meredith Books
  • Publication date: 10/7/2008
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

The star of the Food Network's highly rated show The Secret Life of ..., George Duran previously hosted the network's quirky Ham on the Street. He's the quintessential "guy next door" who just happens to have trained at a culinary institute in Paris, which he followed by hosting Pop Cuisine, an awardwinning television program there. Audiences relish his all-American sense of humor and uniquely delicious recipes for comfort food with a twist.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Make it quick, make it delicious--but always make it with a healthy dose of creativity! This is the delightful way George Duran, who is part comedian, part trained chef, and star of Food Network's Ham on the Street and The Secret Life Of, approaches cooking. In his first-ever cookbook, George shares his favorite recipes for easy-on-the-cook comfort foods with a twist, including recipes such as Deep-Fried Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Banana Split Pancakes. BLT Hot Dogs, and Tex-Mex Lasagna. The unusual twist comes from ingredient combinations you may never have considered, but are absolutely delicious! Are you ready to get new, creative meals and desserts on the table fast? Then let's get cooking!



Pepperoni Pizza Soup



PREP: 15 minutes / COOK: 6 minutes / BROIL: 3 minutes / YIELD: 4 servings



Finally, liquid food lovers everywhere can rejoice. America's favorite pizza is ready for sipping! Remember to try different "toppings" as well, such as mushrooms, onions, and sausage!




  • 2 cans (10.75-ounce) condensed tomato soup

  • 3 cups water

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 1/2 cups dried elbow macaroni (or other short dried pasta such as ditalini or alphabets)

  • 2 green onions, sliced

  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed

  • 1/3 cup diced pepperoni

  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 ounces)

  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (4 ounces)

  • Dried oregano

    1) Preheat the broiler. In a large pan put the tomato soup, water, and garlic; bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the macaroni, green onion, oregano, and pepperoni; cook for 6to 8 minutes or until the macaroni is almost done. Pour the soup into 4 oven-proof bowls. Top each with 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup cheddar cheese, and some oregano. Broil for 3 to 5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned. (Or serve the soup in a small round, crusty loaf of bread. Cut the top off the bread and scoop out the insides. Fill with soup, top with the cheeses, and broil as directed above.)







    Stuffed Lasagna Rolls



    PREP: 25 minutes / COOK: 7 minutes / BAKE: 20 minutes / YIELD: 5 to 6 servings



Many of us struggle with life's conundrums. Why are we here? Is this all there is? What do you do with the six sheets of lasagna pasta that are left over in your pantry? You're on your own with the first two, but I have the perfect solution for number three: Make some stuffed lasagna rolls!




  • 12 no-cook lasagna noodles

  • 2 to 3 hot Italian sausages

  • 1 1/2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese

  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 egg, beaten

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or 3/4 teaspoon table salt

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

    1) In a large pan of boiling, salted water cook the lasagna noodles for 2 to 3 minutes or until they are just soft (don't overcook them). Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain on paper towels.



    2) Remove the casings from the sausages. Crumble the meat into a nonstick skillet. Cook over high heat about 5 to 6 minutes or until browned, breaking up the sausage with a wooden spoon. Remove from the pan and set aside. In a bowl mix the ricotta, Parmesan, egg, basil, salt, and pepper until combined. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a 13 x 9 two-inch lasagna pan evenly spread half of the tomatoes.



    3) To assemble the lasagna rolls, place a lasagna noodle on a work surface with the short side toward you. Put 2 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture on the bottom half of the noodle; add 1 tablespoon of the cooked sausage. Roll noodle starting at the bottom and place in the lasagna pan. Prepare the remaining noodles in the same way, lining them up in the pan. Spread the remaining tomatoes over the rolls and top with the mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until the cheese is bubbling and lightly browned.
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Table of Contents

6 / DURAN-I-CIZE YOUR KITCHEN



20 / RISE AND DINE



46 / LIFE BEYOND LETTUCE



68 / FROM SOUP TO NUTS...MINUS THE NUTS



90 / EAT WITH YOUR HANDS!



116 / Let's Get Comfy



144 / GRILLIN' LIKE A VILLAIN!



172 / NIBBLES AND SWIGS



204 / HOW SWEET IT ENDS



236 / INDEX



240 / Duran's Rules for GASTRONOMIC GLEE
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Recipe

PEPPERONI Pizza Soup
PREP: 15 minutes / COOK: 6 minutes / BROIL: 3 minutes / YIELD: 4 servings
Finally, liquid food lovers everywhere can rejoice. America's favorite pizza is ready for sipping! Remember to try different "toppings" as well, such as mushrooms, onions, and sausage!

2 (10.75-ounce) cans
condensed tomato soup
3 cups water
2 cloves garlic, minced
11/2 cups dried elbow macaroni (or other short dried pasta such as ditalini or alphabets)
2 green onions, sliced
2 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed
1/3 cup diced pepperoni
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 ounces)
1 cup shredded cheddar
cheese (4 ounces)
Dried oregano

1*Preheat the broiler. In a large pan put the tomato soup, water, and garlic; bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the macaroni, green onion, oregano, and pepperoni; cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until the macaroni is almost done. Pour the soup into 4 oven-proof bowls. Top each with 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 cup cheddar cheese, and some oregano. Broil for 3 to 5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and lightly browned. (Or serve the soup in a small round, crusty loaf of bread. Cut the top off the bread and scoop out the insides. Fill with soup, top with the cheeses, and broil as directed above.)

Stuffed Lasagna Rolls
PREP: 25 minutes / COOK: 7 minutes BAKE: 20 minutes / YIELD: 5 to 6 servings
Many of us struggle with life's conundrums. Why are we here? Is this all there is? What do you do with the six sheets of lasagna pasta that are left over in your pantry? You're on your own with the first two, but I have the perfect solution for number three: Make some stuffed lasagnarolls!

12 no-cook lasagna noodles
2 to 3 hot Italian sausages
11/2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon kosher salt or
3/4 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground
black pepper
1 (28-ounce) can
crushed tomatoes
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1*In a large pan of boiling, salted water cook the lasagna noodles for 2 to 3 minutes or until they are just soft (don't overcook them). Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain on paper towels.

2*Remove the casings from the sausages. Crumble the meat into a nonstick skillet. Cook over high heat about 5 to 6 minutes or until browned, breaking up the sausage with a wooden spoon. Remove from the pan and set aside. In a bowl mix the ricotta, Parmesan, egg, basil, salt, and pepper until combined. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a 13×9×2-inch lasagna pan evenly spread half of the tomatoes.

3*To assemble the lasagna rolls, place a lasagna noodle on a work surface with the short side toward you. Put 2 tablespoons of the ricotta mixture on the bottom half of the noodle; add 1 tablespoon of the cooked sausage. Roll noodle starting at the bottom and place in the lasagna pan. Prepare the remaining noodles in the same way, lining them up in the pan. Spread the remaining tomatoes over the rolls and top with the mozzarella cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until the cheese is bubbling and lightly browned.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2008

    Fun to read, fun to make, fun to eat!

    I was a huge Ham On The Street Fan so my mom bought me this book for my birthday. Let me just say--I LOVE YOU, Mom! I have always loved food, but let me tell you--George has made me love cooking it too. The guy's recipes are simple, delicious and not so freaking hard that an average dude like myself can't make them. Plus, the guy is funny! Half the fun of the book is hearing his stories, tips, etc. Already planning my next party using a load of these recipes!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2008

    Now this is a Cookbook

    This is how a cookbook should read. Easy for everyone to understand and see what you are trying to make. Love the book and George on the Foodnetwork is great. The book is written just like he would say it! Can't wait for the book signing.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2008

    He's great on the Food Network

    George's TV shows have made me laugh and eat for the last 2 and a half years. I assume his new book will do the same. I cannot wait to 'eat it'.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2008

    Kitchen Phobia Cured!

    You can count me as a guy who has always wanted to cook but was too damn lazy. A friend of mine who knew George from "Ham on the Street" had bought this book and told me it was a great cookbook for someone like me: cool recipes that are pretty easy to make--but still make you feel like you're doing something kind of special. So I bought it--and last weekend I made the spinach caesar salad and caramelized onion and blue cheese pizza for my girlfriend and she loved them! Sure, maybe it was the wine, but still... Seriously, if you're a cooking newbie, buy this book. If I can make delicious food--anyone can!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2008

    The easiest and funniest chef EVER!

    I've been watching George's show and don' understand why this guy is not on prime time yet! His recipes are easy, fast, simple and always yummy! Can't wait to offer the book around me

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2009

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