Photos: The Making of Across the Country
See behind-the-scenes photos of a Cooking Channel recipe project and photo shoot, Across the Country in 50 State Dishes.
After polling you, our fans, to find out which dishes represent each of your 50 states, our kitchens were challenged with the task of developing an authentic recipe for each state based upon the results.
On the first day of recipe development Treva Chadwell, one of our chefs, stands over a spread of dishes she's prepared for testing.
We start with the Kentucky Hot Brown: a wonderful sandwich piled high with ingredients like turkey, bacon and a creamy sauce. Read more about the recipe below.
Get the Recipe: Kentucky Hot Browns
Treva cuts the Virginia Ham Biscuits for tasting. The initial verdict? The biscuits are perfect but the ham should be drier and salter like leftover Easter ham.
Get the Recipe: Virginia Ham Biscuits
Sweet corn, beautifully grill-marked and buttered, is the dish picked to represent Iowa.
Get the Recipe: Iowa Grilled Sweet Corn on the Cob
Chef Santos Loo describes the new dishes of the day.
Various staffers from different parts of the US were pulled into the test kitchen to offer their opinions on dishes, helping chefs create recipes that taste as authentic as possible.
Now that's a dinner a New England Boiled Dinner, to be exact.
Get the Recipe: New England Boiled Dinner
This version of the Michigan Pasty fell a little bit flat the end result was much more packed with meat.
Get the Recipe: Michigan Pasty (Meat Hand Pie)
North Dakota's Lefse (Norwegian potato crepes) were nicely balanced savory on the outside and sweet (with butter and sugar) on the inside.
Get the Recipe: Lefse (North Dakota Potato Crepe)
Perfecting the Hawaiian Ahi Poke was a matter of balancing the sesame, soy and citrus flavors.
Get the Recipe: Ahi Poke (Hawaiian Tuna Tartar)
These pepperoni rolls from West Virginia were both simple and delicious, with shredded mozzarella and a pepperoni stick tucked inside pizza dough.
Get the Recipe: West Virginia Pepperoni Roll
Chefs and taste testers dig into the runaway surprise hit: Utah's Funeral Potatoes, a dish prepared for the crowds at after-funeral dinners.
The Funeral Potatoes Utah's creamy potato casserole in all their glory
Get the Recipe: Funeral Potatoes (Utah Potato Casserole)
Chicago's classic deep-dish pie didn't last long, with its crispy cast-iron-cooked exterior and inches of toppings and dough.
Get the Recipe: Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza
The blackberry-like marionberries inside Oregon's state pie balanced the tart-sweet spectrum.
Get the Recipe: Marionberry Pie
On a new day the chefs share several recipes in cross-test, including another take at the Funeral Potatoes and New England Boiled Dinner. Editors stand by and take notes.
The one comment on Maryland's Old Bay Steamed Blue Crabs? More Old Bay!
Get the Recipe: Old Bay Steamed Blue Crabs
During one of the photo shoot days, Chef Young Sun Huh busily prepares recipes.
Loads of colorful plates and other props are stacked up and ready to be used to showcase all the dishes.
Tables, trays and more surfaces will set the backdrop for each dish to be photographed.
Chef Santos carefully piles the pulled pork atop the bottom half of the sandwich. As more meat is piled, the pint glass behind the recipe is overshadowed, so a taller glass needs to be used instead.
Get the Recipe: North Carolina Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich
After the photo is taken, the photographer and chefs study the image in a photo editing program to look at elements such as light balance, color and framing.
Thinking about which props to use for the next shots while studying some of the recent images on-screen
At the end of the shoot, we’re left with 50 beautiful photos to package together into our Across the Country project on the website.
See all the photos here: Across the Country in 50 State Dishes.