Category Archives: Ingredients

What is marshmallow creme?

What is marshmallow creme?

Marshmallow creme is scoopable, spreadable marshmallow confection. Packaged in jars, the semi-liquid marshmallow is much softer than a regular marshmallow, and both creamy and sticky at the same time. I tend to always call this confection “marshmallow fluff,” although the name might not be familiar to all consumers, as it is actually a trademark for a single product. When produced by other companies, the marshmallow ... Read More »

What is lemon zest?

Zested lemon

One of the easiest ways to infuse a citrus flavor into a baked good of some kind is to add lemon, lime or orange zest to it.  Zest is not the same thing as the peel, or rind, of a lemon, although it is a part of the peel. The zest is the colorful outer layer of the citrus peel. The soft, white part of ... Read More »

What is Irish soda bread?

Irish soda bread – or just soda bread, if you prefer – is a type of quick bread that uses baking soda as a leavener. While this may not seem like much of a revelation these days due to the prevalence of baking soda in all kinds of recipes, it was a boon to bakers in Ireland in the mid 1800s. At that time, Ireland ... Read More »

How to make Lemon Sugar

Homemade lemon sugar, in progress

Homemade vanilla sugar is one ingredient that I always like to keep in the kitchen. Specked with vanilla beans, the sugar can be used in place of regular sugar in most recipes and can really boost the flavor in a cake or a batch of cookies. It’s easy to make, but it’s not the only flavored sugar option out there. Another type of sugar I ... Read More »

Sweetened Condensed Milk vs. Evaporated Milk

Sweetened Condensed Milk vs. Evaporated Milk

Two of the most often confused ingredients in the kitchen are sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk. Their names are similar, and when you take into consideration the fact that sweetened condensed milk is frequently called “condensed milk,” the two products seem just about the same even though they are very different. Sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk start out in much the same way, ... Read More »

What is meringue powder?

Meringue powder

Meringue powder is an ingredient that you won’t see called for in recipes very often, but you will see if you browse the aisles of a baking supply store or a craft store with a cake decorating section. It also shows up on the ingredient lists of some packaged frostings and icing mixes.  Meringue powder is a fine white powder made primarily from dried egg ... Read More »

How to toast coconut

Toasting coconut

Shredded coconut is an ingredient that is packed with possibilities, both in terms of texture and flavor. Raw shredded coconut, whether you prefer sweetened or unsweetened, has a sweet coconut taste and a chewy texture. Toasted coconut still has the same basic flavor, but it also has a caramelized nuttiness and a crisp-chewy texture that raw doesn’t offer. It’s easy to toast coconut at home ... Read More »

What is Dutch Processed Cocoa Powder?

dutched cocoa powder

There are two types of cocoa powder: natural and dutch processed. Natural cocoa powder is made from the solids of a roasted, dried cocoa bean, which are very finely ground into a powder for packaging. The powder is slightly acidic and has a very sharp taste to it, though it usually contains fruity or smokey notes just like dark roasted coffee beans do. Natural cocoa ... Read More »

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