Category Archives: Product Reviews

Sweet Apricot Kernels, reviewed

os Trader Joe’s recently started stocking Sweet Apricot Kernels – a.k.a. poor man’s “almonds” or “bitter almonds” – in their nut aisle. This came as quite a surprise to me because my first though after seeing them was “aren’t apricot kernels poisonous?” The answer is yes, they actually are. Usually called “bitter almonds” in recipes, the kernels can be used used in jam, marzipan and ... Read More »

Nestle Swirled Holiday Morsels, reviewed

Nestle Swirled Holiday Morsels

I used food coloring to put a swirl into my candy cane cupcakes. Nestle clearly had the same idea when they came up with their Swirled Holiday Morsels – a.k.a. red, white and green white baking chips. Their chips have broader applications than my cupcakes do and are an interesting way to help us infuse a little color into our holiday baking. The chips are ... Read More »

Guittard Extra Dark Chocolate Chips, reviewed

Guittard Extra Dark Chocolate Chips

Semisweet chocolate is the standard for chocolate chips. Neither too sweet nor too dark, it appeals to everyone and complements most recipes. If you want something a little different, you either have to hunt around to find a bag of specialty chocolate chips or chop up a bar of chocolate into chunks to stir into your cookie dough. Dark chocolate lovers should keep an eye ... Read More »

The best frozen apple pie and key lime pie

cr's frozen pies

Sometimes there just isn’t time to bake a pie from scratch during the holidays. Company is coming, your family is traveling, or you’ve cooked so much other stuff that you’re simply not interested in starting another project. At times like this, you can buy a pie or other dessert from a favorite bakery, or you can buy¬† frozen pie and stick it in the oven ... Read More »

The best inexpensive stand mixers

Kitchen Aid Classic Plus

A mixer is a crucial tool to have in the kitchen, especially if you do a lot of baking. They are so efficient at whipping egg whites and mixing dough that the it’s almost crazy to try to do everything strictly by hand (or with a whisk) all the time. A hand mixer is a great tool – not too expensive and it gets the ... Read More »

Jones Soda Lemon Drop Dead, reviewed

Jones Soda Co. is known for their inventively flavored sodas and unique label designs. Their normal sodas range from Root Beer to Fufu Berry, but their most original are the holiday drinks that they put out a few times each year. The Turkey and Gravy Soda, part of the Thanksgiving and Christmas variety packs, is notorious for being a bit… adventurous, but when I saw ... Read More »

Pumpkin Spice Hershey’s Kisses, reviewed

Pumpkin Spice Hershey's Kisses

Hershey’s Kisses can always be counted on to come out with at least one special edition flavor for any given holiday. The kisses are bite sized, which makes them a good vehicle for trying out new flavors without committing to eating (or possibly throwing away) an entire chocolate bar. For Halloween this year, Hershey’s has out Candy Corn Kisses, Pumpkin Spice Kisses and, apparently, Caramel ... Read More »

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