Category Archives: Product Reviews

Reynolds StayBrite Baking Cups, reviewed

Coffee Cake Muffins

Most muffin and cupcake wrappers are designed to keep your baked goods from sticking to the pan, making them easy to remove and easy to pick up and eat. The design options when it came to these wrappers used to be very limited. These days, you can really get creative with your cupcakes just by using a variety of multi-colored or unusually patterned cupcakes. The ... Read More »

Gold Medal Imitation Vanilla, reviewed

Gold Medal Imitation Vanilla Extract

I use real vanilla extract and real vanilla beans when I’m baking – and I generally use a lot, because not only do I love the flavor of vanilla, but I love how it interacts with other flavors. A couple of years ago, an issue of Cook’s Illustrated (March 2009) conducted a taste test of vanilla extract and found that imitation vanilla can be just ... Read More »

Norpro Silicone Ice Pop Molds, reviewed

Homemade Push Pops

There are many fun and interesting popsicle molds out there that you can use to make homemade popsicles or fudgsicles at home. There aren’t too many like these Norpro Silicone Ice Pop Molds, however, and that is what originally attracted me to them. These silicone sleeves don’t require any popsicle sticks. Instead, you simply fill up the silicone tube with your popsicle mixture (or plain ... Read More »

Consumer Reports rates brownie mixes

Homemade brownies are unquestionably delicious, but box mix brownies are a standby for even avid at-home bakers (and chefs on reality TV shows who are scared of baking) because they are reliable, take seconds to mix and generally turn out a finished product that will satisfy any chocolate craving. I generally like box mix brownies better than box cake mixes, and I know that I’m ... Read More »

Vosges Love Goddess Chocolate Cake Mix, reviewed

Vosges Love Goddess Chocolate Cake Mix

Vosges is a high end chocolatier who is known for not just high quality chocolate, but the unusual flavor combinations that it it pairs with its chocolate. One of their specialties is a bacon chocolate bar, for instance, and their other exotic bars include ingredients like wasabi, gogi berries, chipotle chiles and more (although they also have plenty of bars that contain more familiar chocolate ... Read More »

Cook’s Illustrated tests springform pans

Springform pans

A springform pan is a type of cake pan that has removable sides. The strip of metal that makes up the sides of the pan is shaped into a ring and is held together with an adjustable latch or buckle. It can be tightened by snapping the latch into place, tightening the ring and creating a tight seal with the pan’s base. When unlatched, the ... Read More »

Cook’s Illustrated rates Vanilla Beans

Vanilla Beans

Vanilla beans can impart a much deeper and more complex vanilla flavor to a custard or other dessert than vanilla extract, but while any vanilla bean is better than none, not all vanilla beans offer the same flavors. They range in quality and price, and in a recent issue (July/Aug 2011) the test kitchen at Cook’s Illustrated set out to test five different brands of ... Read More »

Sof’ella Gourmet Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix, reviewed

Sof'ella Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix

Not every cake mix is going to appeal to me, but the gourmet mixes that use all natural ingredients tend to catch my eye and get me wondering how they compare to real, homemade baked goods. I’ve tried some mixes with great results, and others with more mixed feelings. This Sof’ella Gourmet Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix is a little bit unusual because it is ... Read More »

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