Send Marc a message!

Use the quick form on the right to send Marc an email.


123 Street Avenue, City Town, 99999

(123) 555-6789


You can set your address, phone number, email and site description in the settings tab.
Link to read me page with more information.


Recipes & Entertaining Ideas

Filtering by Tag: Food Network

As Seen on Food Network! Creamed Spinach & Chicago Sliders

Marc J. Sievers

The winner's trophy in our (cleaned) kitchen! (We drank the Champagne that came in it...)

In January, Ryan and I were crowned the Best Home Cooks of Chicago on Bobby's Dinner Battle hosted by Bobby Flay on Food Network!  Being on national television I really wanted to push the boundaries of my culinary skills, so I decided to attempt creamed spinach -- something I have eaten many times in fabulous restaurants but never made at home.

Marc and Ryan competed on Food Network's  Bobby's Dinner Battle: Battle Chicago  hosted by Bobby Flay—and won the title of Best Home Cooks of Chicago!

Marc and Ryan competed on Food Network's Bobby's Dinner Battle: Battle Chicago hosted by Bobby Flay—and won the title of Best Home Cooks of Chicago!

After a crazy whirlwind of four hours in the kitchen, I remember carrying the bowl of my Creamed Spinach over to the eagerly-waiting dinner guests (including Bobby Flay!) practically shaking from both excitement and nervousness!  It was a hit for all six guests that day.  Some even said it was the best creamed spinach they had ever had!

On the other end of the spectrum, we also attempted our version of sliders.  Let's just say they did not receive the same praise as my Creamed Spinach.  After the episode aired, I took the critique in stride and gave our sliders another try.  I remade the recipe into Chicago Sliders and cooked them to perfection, topped with my Fresh Thyme Mayo.

I stepped in front of the camera again, this time at From My Kitchen to Yours (my web series on YouTube) to share these recipes with you.  Happy cooking!

Creamed Spinach

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • Spinach – 1 pound, fresh

  • Heavy Cream – 1½ cups

  • Butter – 4 tablespoons

  • Parmesan – ¾, freshly grated

  • Flour – ⅓ cup, all-purpose

  • Salt – ½ teaspoon

  • Black Pepper – 1 teaspoon, freshly cracked


  1. Start by bringing a large pot of water to a boil. In the meantime, fill a large bowl with ice and cold water.

  2. Once the water comes to a boil, cook the spinach for 30 to 45 seconds. Immediately strain the spinach and plunge into the bowl of ice water. This is called "shocking" and will stop the cooking process and allow the spinach to retain its vivid green color.

  3. Remove the spinach from the ice water and squeeze all the excess liquid from the spinach. Place into the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment.

  4. Next, cook the butter and flour in a medium sauce pan set over medium heat, stirring constantly, about 3 to 5 minutes.

  5. Add the heavy cream, salt, and pepper. Beat with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens, or about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and add the parmesan.

  6. Transfer the white sauce into the bowl of the food processor. Pulse 15 to 20 times or until desired consistency is achieved.

  7. Transfer back into a small sauce pan and gently re-heat before serving.

Chicago Sliders

Ingredients (makes 8 sliders)

  • Ground Beef – 1⅓ pounds, Organic, Grass Fed

  • Parsley – ¼ cup, freshly chopped

  • Garlic – 3 cloves, finely minced

  • Butter – 2 tablespoons

  • Olive Oil – ¼ cup

  • Gruyere – 1½ cups, freshly grated

  • Salt – ¾ teaspoon

  • Black Pepper – ¾ teaspoon, freshly cracked

  • Mini Pretzel Buns – 8, lightly toasted

  • Arugula – For garnish and topping


  1. Combine the beef, salt, pepper, garlic and parsley in a large bowl. Using (two) forks, gently fluff and mix the mixture until incorporated.

  2. Gently shape the meat into 8 small patties, being very careful not to compress the meat.

  3. Next, in a large skillet set over medium heat, add the butter and olive oil.

  4. Cook the sliders for 3 minutes on one side, then flip each one, top with cheese and cover the pan for an additional 3 minutes. Covering the lid will ensure the cheese gets nicely melted!

  5. Serve will arugula, Fresh Thyme Mayo and pretzels buns for the ultimate Chicago Slider!

Fresh Thyme Mayo


  • Mayonnaise – ½ cup

  • Mustard – 1 tablespoon, whole grain

  • Thyme – 1 teaspoon, freshly minced

  • Lemon Juice – ½ lemon

  • Lemon Zest - 1 teaspoon

  • Salt – ½ teaspoon

  • Black pepper – ½ teaspoon


  1. Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and mix until incorporated.

  2. Use on sliders, sandwiches, or for dipping artichokes.

  3. Enjoy!

Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

Print Friendly and PDF

Bobby Flay in My Kitchen!

Marc J. Sievers

...and the Best Home Cooks of Chicago are Marc and Ryan Sievers!

First, let me start by trying to express just how excited Ryan and I are to have competed on Food Network's Bobby's Dinner Battle and been chosen as the Best Home Cooks of Chicago by Bobby Flay!  It was a fantastically fun and enlightening adventure for us and the reward for our teamwork and dedication was spectacular!

Marc and Ryan in their Chicago kitchen, strategizing on a dinner party menu with a speakeasy theme for  Bobby's Dinner Battle: Battle Chicago  hosted by Bobby Flay on Food Network.

Marc and Ryan in their Chicago kitchen, strategizing on a dinner party menu with a speakeasy theme for Bobby's Dinner Battle: Battle Chicago hosted by Bobby Flay on Food Network.

As Ryan and I were reminiscing about the challenges and different stresses in the heat of the kitchen for Bobby's Dinner Battle I realized that, though there was a lot of action and drama, we have actually be through similar experiences when there weren't any cameras rolling (so far minus a celebrity chef and competitors!).

The winner's trophy at home in our (cleaned!) kitchen.

For Bobby's Dinner Battle we had to conceptualize a dinner party based on a theme, with a time constraint for shopping (with a budget), and get our food ready for the table, before our doorbell rang.  We had to impress.  This was no small feat to do with TV cameras chasing us around, but equally is no small feat in everyday life.  Just because most kitchen's don't have a red blinking clock counting down doesn't mean it doesn't sometimes feel like it's there, stressing you out before your dinner party guests arrive.

I host dinner parties and cocktail parties, both personal and for clients, on a weekly basis and I am constantly looking for ways to save time and reduce stress while keeping the experience elevated and a cut above the rest.  As a result I have definitely discovered some useful tips, tricks, and no-nonsense rules of entertaining that I live by!  Here are just a few of my "words of entertaining wisdom" I have up my sleeve (or in my apron pocket) to get your prepared for your next gathering!

  • Choose a theme! Having a theme for your party, and the food you serve, is essential. But, don’t go overboard! Try not to be too literal with your tablescapes. Add smaller details that will evoke your theme's sentiment. By keeping it simple (which is not the same thing as barren), it will always be chic and stylish!

  • Plan a fabulous menu! Choose your dishes to compliment the occasion or theme of your event and balance between starters, side dishes, and the main course. Serving a filling main course? Then prepare fewer and lighter complimentary side dishes. Planning a decedent dessert? Then less is more when it comes to extras like hearty breads or heavy starters.

  • Set your table the night before. One of the easiest tricks to save yourself stress on the day of your party is to have set your table the night before. You can take your time to make sure all of your details are in place, and you will have time to fix or work around any problems you might discover (like a torn tablecloth or wax-encrusted candle stick). This trick will leave you more time on the day of the party for other details, or to just relax.

  • Plan your serving dishes. Decide what serving dishes you are going to use before you even begin cooking. Use sticky notes to organize and help you remember which menu items are going to be placed in which serving dish. This is especially helpful for buffet-style food tables.

  • Bottoms up! My number one secret is to have a glass of champagne or white wine (red will stain your lips) before the start of the party as a toast to a job well-done and to relax a bit! Also, for the first hour or so I will be greeting and catching up with guests as they arrive and it's hard to hug and shake hands with a glass in my hand!

These simple words of entertaining wisdom just skim the surface of what I have included in my cookbook Entertaining with Love!  I promise by following these, and the other rules outlined in my book, you will be sure to have a well-organized and successful party that is fun and you actually enjoy!


Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

Print Friendly and PDF