Popsicles are easy to make treats that are always a hit with kids. When you make them at home instead of buying them, you have a lot more options when it comes to flavors (sweetened fruit juices are great options, for instance) than you do when picking them out at the store. You also have more choices when it comes to shapes because there are some fantastic and fanciful popsicle molds out there. These Lickety Pops Freezer Pops are especially likely to appeal to kids, since they look like silly, giant, pink tongues! The silicone pop molds are sealed at the bottom so you need to push the frozen pop up to the top to eat it. They’re less messy than popsicles on sticks, since there shouldn’t be any drips falling onto waiting hands. They also include lids for sealing the pops up while they’re freezing, so you don’t need to struggle to position them upright in your freezer.
I’ve used push up silicone popsicle molds with great results, and this really is an excellent design when it comes to making ice pops. The only downside to this one is that they’re sold in a set of two, so you might want to pick up an extra pair if you’re going to be serving these to a crowd (because the odds are good that any kid who sees one is going to want one).
When I’m mixing up a recipe in my kitchen, one of the tools that I use the most is a spatula. I use it to scrape the sides of bowls, fold together ingredients and scrape batters into waiting pans. Since I also use a whisk or a mixer, I often need to set my spatula down when I’m not using it. Most spatulas are flat, so anything on them – such as sticky batter or meringue - will end up on your counter if you need to set your spatula down unless you can find something to lean it against. This set of Elevate Spatulas are designed to avoid this problem and each has a small stand built into the handle that keeps the spatula head elevated and off the counter. It’s a small addition to the traditional design of a spatula, but it is one that makes so much sense! The spatulas otherwise work like traditional spatulas, with flexible silicone heads that are heat resistant up to 650F. They are sold as a set that includes three different sizes: small, large and spoon.
How many food magazines do you subscribe to? How often do you tear out one of those magazine pages, clip a recipe out of a newspaper, or print one from your favorite blog? Even if you have a tablet or other portable device, there are plenty of occasions when you have a recipe on a piece of paper instead of a computer screen and need somewhere to put it in the kitchen. A single sheet of paper can, in some ways, be even harder to work with than a tablet. It single drop of water can easily compromise the paper (where it can probably be wiped off the tablet) and it is hard to prop it up so that you can read it.
As with so many other kitchen problems, this one has a solution. The Recipe Rock is a stand that is designed to give some shape and support to all those free floating recipe pages so you can easily reference them while you’re cooking. The Rock has a slightly curved base that is paired with a strong magnet, which holds your recipe in place without flopping over. It will actually hold up to eight pages at a time, giving you plenty of material to work with. It takes up almost no counter space, measuring just 2.5 x 2.5-inches, and can easily be tucked into a drawer when you’re not using it. It might not be the most eye-catching piece of equipment in your kitchen (although it comes in a few colors), but if you have as many recipes and notes floating around as I do, it is one that will get a lot of use.
Layer cakes are usually made with layers of plain, round cakes, stacked up to turn a simple dessert into a dramatic centerpiece. Occasionally, you will see a layer cake that uses square cakes for a slightly unusual look, but round is the standard for layer cakes. Williams Sonoma recently introduced layer cake pans with a little extra flair that will give your cakes a slightly different look. These Celebration Layer Cake Pans have scalloped edges, which make them look a little bit like large flowers before they’re stacked into eye-catching layer cakes. The pans are large and thin – 9 3/4″ wide and just 3/4″ high. The shallow depth makes it easy to ensure that your cake layers will all be the same thickness (instead of trying to eyeball the right amount of cake batter in a deeper pan), and it also makes the layers easy to remove from the nonstick pans. The pans will cool down quickly once the cakes are removed, so you can quickly clean and re-fill them to bake additional layers without needing multiple sets of cake pans to do so.
Most of the time, cupcakes are frosted with just one color of frosting. You can make two tone frosting by mixing up two different colors of frosting and putting them both into the same piping bag, allowing you to squeeze out a marbled frosting with both colors. This latter method definitely works, but it is difficult to get the colors distributed evenly into the bag, so you’ll end up with some cupcakes that have a lighter swirl and others that have a much darker one, while other times the colors will just completely run together. The solution is a piping bag with two chambers so that you can fill one side with each color and know that you’ll get equal amounts of each color on your cake and that the icing colors won’t blend into one color you weren’t anticipating.
This Duo Icing Set offers just that. The set includes a total of eight disposable icing bags, each with two chambers that allow you to use multiple frosting colors with ease. Four bags are 18-inch and four are 12-inch bags. The set includes six different tips for making everything from thin lines to stars to flowers, and also includes a coupling set that allows you to attach the tips onto the outside of the bag, making it easy to change the tip multiple times on one project. When you run out of bags, you can order a replacement set of them that includes either 10 large or 20 small bags, keeping the tips from this first set to use over and over.