Her beef and gnocchi dish will be made with McDonalds French fries, another smoothie base, carrots and meat normally used for burger patties. As McDonalds struggles to keep sales growing at the fast clip maintained during the recession, the chain is spicing up its menu with Habanero Ranch sauce and rice wine vinegar in its McWraps bolder flavors that werent as acceptable five to seven years ago, Foust said. You can find these ingredients in grocery stores and some of the most fine dining in the country, she said in a recent interview. Were helping people understand that its food thats all it is. James Tahhan, star of cooking shows on Telemundo and Utilisima, will create tortilla espanola with garlic and saffron aioli using the fast-food companys hash browns, eggs and onions. There will also be Kung Pao chicken made using Chicken McNuggets by Dale Talde, a contestant on Bravos Top Chef show. Aaron McCargo Jr., winner of the Next Food Network Star competition and host of the Big Daddys House show on the television network, will present barbecue chicken. The ingredients? McDonalds crispy chicken, hash browns, Chipotle BBQ sauce, cheddar jack cheese and espresso. Recently, in a production studio in the City of Industry, McCargo prepped his dish as McDonalds film crews looked on. The chef worked at McDonalds while in culinary school, flipping burgers for nearly two years, he said. If the chain were to jazz up its meals by incorporating more upscale elements, it would really change the dynamics of everyone in the fast-food industry, McCargo said.

Celebrity Powers Saks Fifth Avenue

( SKS ), has partnered with Emmy nominated actress, Kerry Washington, to add celebrity power to its namesake brand Saks Fifth Avenue. The celebrity has starred in the hit ABC series Scandal and will endorse the brand through in-store, online and on-screen platforms starting Oct 2. Moreover, Saks several products and accessories will be sported by Kerry Washington will be promoted through the upcoming episodes of Scandal. In return, the New York flagship store of Saks Fifth Avenue will showcase a window installation of the trends worn by Ms. Washingtons character Olivia Pope in the series. The partnership is going to be beneficial for the retailer as the series will familiarize youngsters with Saks fashion trends as Olivia Pope sports them. The company is aiming to boost sales of the Saks Fifth Avenue by these promotional campaigns. After suffering decline in comps and poor top line results for several past quarters, Saks has recently ramped up its marketing and promotional activity (advertising campaigns and loyalty credit card programs) to boost sales. Although such promotional campaigns have decreased merchandise margins, it is expected to drive earnings over the long term. It has chosen the omni channel retailing in order boost sales in the coming quarter. Saks will sell itself to Canadas private retailer Hudsons Bay, parent of apparel chains like Lord & Taylors in the U.S. The deal is expected to be completed by end of calendar 2013. Saks currently holds a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Other stocks in the retail and wholesale sector worth considering are Citi Trends Inc. ( CTRN ), Christopher & Banks Corporation ( CBK ), and Limited Brands Inc.

Celebrity Cruises heads to St. Barts

The island’s claim to fame includes as a location for segments of The Real Housewives of New York City. Celebrity will include the island on three cruises the line said were created with “upscale travelers” in mind. Two nine-day cruises, Nov. 29 and Dec. 14, 2014, are round-trip from Fort Lauderdale and also include calls at Royal Caribbean’s private beach resort at Labadee, Haiti; San Juan; St. Croix; and St. Maarten. An eight-day cruise embarking Jan. 16, 2015, will visit all but St. Maarten. Fares are from $899 per person, double occupancy. The 11-year-old Celebrity Constellation was the first of Celebrity Cruises’ four older Millennium Class ships to undergo a top-to-bottom overhaul to make it more like the line’s newer Solstice Class ships, a process the line called “Solsticizing.” What’s new on the vessel?

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