Choxie Dark Chocolate Espresso Bar, reviewed

Choxie Dark Chocolate Espresso Bar

When I bit into a piece of the Choxie Dark Chocolate Espresso Bar I recently picked up at Target, I was immediately reminded of something. The bar was made of smooth, exceptionally well-balanced dark chocolate. The chocolate had a nice cocoa bitterness to it and a distinctly fruity flavor that played very well with the ground up coffee beans also present in the bar. The ... Read More »

Toothpicks versus cake testers

metal cake tester from C&B

Toothpicks are the gold-standard of cake testing. Most, if not all, recipes call for them and even though there are other ways to test for doneness (for instance, lightly pressing the top of a muffin/cake to see if it springs back into place), checking to see if a toothpick inserted into the center of a baked good comes out clean is consistently reliable. But many ... Read More »

Chewy Brownie Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

Chewy Brownie Peanut Butter Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies may be the single most popular type of cookie out there, but I’m pretty sure that it is the chocolate element of the cookie that really sells it. So, if a cookie with some chocolate in it is good, one that has even more chocolate is bound to be better, right? Besides, it gets boring if you stick to one type of ... Read More »

Cake Art

Cake Art

There are so many shows on cake decorating on the Food Network these days, I can’t even name them all. From cakes that are 6-feet tall to cakes with moveable parts, “impressive” almost doesn’t seem like a strong enough word to describe them. Watching the shows is inspiring, but the skills needed to turn out a cake like that are not taught in most cookbooks, ... Read More »

Buttermilk Pancakes with Nectarines

Buttermilk Pancakes with Nectarines... and maple syrup

Plain buttermilk pancakes are probably one of my favorite things to have for a lazy weekend breakfast. They’re reliably good on their own – especially when topped with maple syrup – but are also open to a wide variety of variations. Blueberries and chocolate chips are pretty standard add-ins and since they’re so good, it is easy to fall into a rut. I know because I caught ... Read More »

Agave Muffins with Apricots and Candied Ginger

Sugar is – and probably always will be – my go-to sweetener for anything I bake. Call me traditional, but sugar plays a big role in the chemistry of baking and for most things (since I, very fortunately, do not have any dietary restrictions that force me to look elsewhere) I am more than happy to use it. But just because I love sugar doesn’t ... Read More »

How do you know when bread is done baking?

baked loaf of sourdough

With cakes and muffins, it is easy to stick a toothpick into the top to check for doneness, or to simply touch the top of the cake with a fingertip and see if it has set and springs back into place. With cookies, you can usually tell just by looking at them, and if you can’t, you can again touch an edge to see if ... Read More »

Decorative cupcake wrappers?

It’s easy to compulsively buy cute cupcake and muffin papers when you see them in the baking aisle. You go through a package with every batch or two of cupcakes you bake, so you’re never really overloaded with them, and the seasonal ones make baked goods look oh-so-festive. I use them about three-quarters of the time, as while they make the cupcakes easy to handle, sometimes I just ... Read More »

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