On the show

Giada and Bobby Flay spill the beans on champagne sangria, grilled corn, more

June 11, 2013 at 10:53 AM ET

Video: Chefs Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby Flay tackle viewers’ summer cooking questions, including whether you should grill corn with the husks on or off.

TODAY fans tweeted their kitchen problems to #spillthebeans, and this morning Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby Flay shared their expert advice on-air. Check out their recipes below and stay tuned for their answers to your culinary questions:

Giada: In all fairness, both ways are fine. But this is the shortcut, and I’m always going to take the shortcut. I shuck my corn, wash it, and blanch it for 2 to 3 minutes in boiling water. Then I salt and pepper it and put it on an oiled grill for about 5 minutes.

Bobby: I soak mine in some water. I take the silks out and actually grill it with the husks on, so it steams and gets a little smoky flavor. Then I brush it with a bit of roasted pepper butter when it comes out. I think Giada’s way is going to get direct heat and smoke to your corn, and this way you’re going to get the perfume of the smoke.

Bobby: We disagree here completely. Go ahead, Giada.

Giada: What I like to do is oil the grill. I take a little paper towel, put oil on it and then rub it directly on the grill to brush it.

Bobby: I like to take a little bit of oil and just oil the food itself. The only problem with what Giada wants to do is that if you’re going to oil the grill, it creates a gray smoke right off the bat, so you have to make sure it dissipates first.

Giada: It's sweet, but it’s slightly smoky. I like this for chicken and lamb. (Recipe below)

Bobby: Mine is tomato based, but I like a deep, rich barbecue sauce that’s a little bit smoky and fiery. So I use smoked chiles in here and a little bit of molasses to balance it out. As you can see, mine is deep and rich. (Recipe below)

Chicken or steak with raspberry balsamic sauce
Courtesy Giada De Laurentiis

For raspberry balsamic sauce:
2 cups frozen unsweetened raspberries, thawed
3/4 cup ketchup
2/3 cup seedless raspberry jam
3 tablespoons packed golden brown sugar
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black
Zest of 1 small lemon

In a food processor or blender, blend together the raspberries, ketchup, jam, sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, salt, pepper and lemon zest until smooth. Pour the sauce into a heavy medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until slightly thickened, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and cool for 10 minutes. Pour into a small serving bowl.

For the chicken:

Place a grill pan over medium heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Lightly coat with some of the BBQ sauce using a pastry brush. Place on the grill.

Cook the chicken about 8 minutes per side. Remove from the grill and let rest for at least 5 minutes. Serve with the remaining raspberry balsamic sauce alongside. (Chicken breasts on bone, skin on)

Alternately, the chicken can be baked in the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the chicken skin side up in a baking dish and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the baking dish from the oven and spoon the BBQ sauce all over the top of the chicken. Return the baking dish to the oven and bake for another 15 minutes.

Champagne sangria
Courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis

1 (750 ml) bottle Prosecco or French champagne, chilled
1/2 cup orange juice
2 cups Mint Simple Syrup, recipe follows
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1/2 lime, thinly sliced
1/2 cup sliced strawberries
5 fresh mint sprigs
Crushed ice

In a large pitcher, combine the Prosecco, orange juice, simple syrup, lemon zest, and lime zest. Add the sliced strawberries, lemonslices, lime slices, and mint sprigs.

Fill glasses with crushed ice and pour the sangria over the top. Serve immediately.

(Yield: 6 to 8 servings)

Mint simple syrup

2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cup packed mint leaves

In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, water, and mint over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the syrup to cool for 20 minutes. Strain before using.

(Yield: 2 1/2 cups)

Grilled corn with piquillo pepper butter
Courtesy of Bobby Flay, "Barbecue Addiction"

½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
4 jarred piquillo peppers, patted dry and chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon mild Spanish paprika
Kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
12 ears of corn

1. Combine the butter, piquillo peppers, garlic, thyme, paprika, 1 teaspoon salt, the pepper in a food processor and process until smooth. Scrape the butter into a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours. Let soften slightly before using.

2. Heat your grill to high for direct grilling.

3. Pull outer husks down each ear of corn to the base. Strip away the silk from each ear of corn. Fold the husks back into place and tie ends together with kitchen string. Place the ears of corn in a large bowl of cold water with 1 tablespoon salt for 10 minutes.

4. Remove the corn from the water and shake off the excess. Put the corn on the grill, close the cover, and grill, turning every 5 minutes, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the kernels are tender when pierced with a paring knife.

5. Peel back the husks and serve the corn hot, slathered with the piquillo butter.

Spice-rubbed ribs with BBQ sauce
Courtesy of Bobby Flay, "Barbecue Addiction"

For rub:
½ cup ancho chile powder
¼ cup Spanish paprika
¼ cup freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup dry mustard
¼ cup Kosher salt
¼ cup ground coriander
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 ½ tablespoons chile de arbol
¼ cup canola oil
2 racks of ribs, 12 ribs each, membrane removed, we use St. Louis style for a meatier cut
1 drip pan, filled with water about half way, and baking rack that can safely sit on top of pan securely
BBQ sauce, recipe below

1. Combine all spices in a small bowl.

2. Brush both sides of the racks with oil and liberally rub with the spice mixture.

3. Sear ribs on grill, marking both sides, on direct heat, allowing a crust to be formed.

4. Place drip pan filled with water onto indirect heat side of grill, fitted with baking rack on top.

5. Transfer ribs onto baking rack on the indirect heat, letting ribs cook slowly. Cover grill and let ribs cook until tender, approximately 1 ½ to 2 hours, depending upon size and heat.

6. Transfer ribs back onto the direct heat side of the grill to finish the cooking process, approximately 20 to 30 minutes, applying BBQ sauce approximately every 5 minutes or so, resulting in very flavorful ribs with great texture and depth.

BBQ sauce

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 medium Spanish onion, coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
1 tablespoon paprika
½ teaspoon chile de arbol or cayenne chile powder
1 ½ cups ketchup
1/2 cup water
1 heaping tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 canned chipotle chile in adobo, chopped
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon molasses
Salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan. Add the onions and cook until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the ketchup and water, bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for an additional 10 minutes until thickened, stirring occasionally.

2. Transfer the mixture to a food processor and puree until smooth, season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a bowl and allow to cool at room temperature. Sauce will keep for 1 week in the refrigerator stored in a tightly sealed container.

Rose sangria spritzer
Courtesy of Bobby Flay, "Barbecue Addiction"

1 bottle cold rose wine
1 green apple, thinly sliced
1 orange, halved, thinly sliced
1 pint fresh raspberries
Simple syrup, to taste
Fresh mint leaves
Ice cubes
Club soda, cold

Combine wine, apple, orange and raspberries in a pitcher. Add simple syrup to taste. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day. Serve over ice and top with a few splashes of club soda.

TOP