Category Archives: Product Reviews

Trader Joe’s Golden Yellow Cake Mix, reviewed

Trader Joe's Yellow Cake Mix

I love to bake cakes from scratch, but I am often curious about cake mixes put out by more gourmet retailers to see how they stack up to the real thing. A good example was the expensive, but outstanding, Ad Hoc Yellow Cake Mix. Trader Joe’s ever-expanding line of baking products includes cake mixes, as well as convenient frosting mixes, so I wanted to see ... Read More »

NordicWare Filled Cupcakes Pan, reviewed

Nordic Ware Filled Cupcake Cupcake

NordicWare’s Filled Cupcakes Pan is easily one of the most fun looking pans I’ve played with in quite some time. The pan has a very unusual concept because it lets you bake both the bottom and the top of a cupcake out of cake (where the top would usually be just frosting) and puts a small cavity in the middle for adding some filling. You ... Read More »

Nellie & Joe’s Famous Key West Lime Juice, reviewed

Nellie & Joe's Famous Key West Lime Juice

Nothing beats a key lime when you’re going to make a key lime pie. Key limes are more acidic and more tart than Persian limes (the most common variety of lime), and they make for a very bright and sweet-tart pie. I use regular limes when I don’t have key limes because they work just as well and still turn out a very good key ... Read More »

Frieling Soccer Ball Pan

Frieling Soccer Ball Pan

There are all kinds of pans out there for sports fans and even stadium-shaped pans for fans who want to get a little bit of the stadium experience at home. I like a lot of sports, but I’m a soccer fan and with the Los Angeles Galaxy home season opening this past weekend, I decided that a batch of soccer ball cakes was in order. ... Read More »

Neill’s Irish Soda Bread Mix, reviewed

Irish Soda Bread Mix

Irish soda bread is one of my favorite quick breads to make because it is so easy and so versatile. The history of the bread (not to mention the name) always emphasize how popular the bread is in Ireland, so while it is easy to make from scratch, I couldn’t resist giving Neill’s Irish Soda Bread Mix a try because it actually comes from Ireland. ... Read More »

Cook’s Illustrated rates creamy peanut butters

Creamy Peanut Butters

What kind of peanut butter do you keep in your pantry? Where there were once just a few options for peanut butter, it seems like there are dozens of types and brands to choose from these days. You have the option of creamy and crunchy, as well as natural, honey roasted, Omega-3 enriched, sea salt and no salt – just to name a handful of ... Read More »

MixerMate Bowl, reviewed

MixerMate Bowl, reviewed

Sometimes, it just takes a very small change to make a big difference. This is true in many things, but it is equally true in the kitchen. The BeaterBlade is a great example. This stand mixer attachment has a silicone “blade” that extends from what is otherwise a regular paddle attachment. It scrapes the bowl as it mixes, making blending easier and faster than with ... Read More »

Trader Joe’s White Chocolate, reviewed

TJ's white chocolate

White chocolate is a blend of sugar, cocoa butter, milk and vanilla. It is not considered to be chocolate by some chocolate fans because it does not contain any cocoa solids, unlike milk and dark chocolate, but the thing that makes chocolate special is not just the cocoa solids but the cocoa butter. Cocoa butter is the fat in chocolate that gives it the unique ... Read More »

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