Category Archives: Sweet Stuff

What are demerara, turbinado and muscovado sugars?

demarra and muscovado sugar

When it comes to baking, recipes mostly call for powdered/confectioners’ sugar, plain sugar or brown sugar. The textures and properties of these three types are taken into account when the recipe is formulated. But they are not the be-all and end-all of sugars, and a few of the “specialty” sugars (by which I mean that they’re less common here in the US) are gaining in ... Read More »

Cake Mate flavored sugars

Cake Mate's flavored sugars

Vanilla sugar is one of those wonderful and easy to make ingredients that it is nice to have in the kitchen. Everything can do with a bit of vanilla, after all, whether you are adding a spoonful to a cup of tea, sprinkling the tops of muffins or simply creaming it into butter for a cookie dough. Other easy and useful sugars are spiced sugars, ... Read More »

EW bakes with sugar substitutes

Eating Well's 'sugar' cookies

There is really nothing that can replace real sugar when it comes to baking, especially when it comes to sweets and pastries. Sugar sweetens, enhances other flavors and acts as a preservative in most baked goods. It also adds a lot of calories that not everyone wants and can, for other medical reasons, be off-limits to some people. There are lots of sugar alternatives on ... Read More »

Girl Scout Cookie season and trans fats

Girl Scout Cookies

Homemade cookies are always the best in my book, but because I was a girl scout when I was little, I have a soft spot for girl scout cookies. Actually, I used to have a soft spot for girl scout cookes. Given that the cookies increase in price every year without an increase (and sometimes with a decrease!) in quality, it’s hard to keep standing ... Read More »

How to make your own colored sugars

red sugar

While I enjoy icing cookies by hand, drawing little designs and other decorations (especially for gingerbread cookies), I always use a fair amount of colored sanding sugar around the holidays. Colored sugars are perfect for finishing off sugar cookies and butter cookies, giving them a fun and festive look for the holidays. In fact, it has always been a bit of a tradition for my ... Read More »

Dress up your gingerbread cookies

gingerbread man with santa hat

Need an idea for decorating your gingerbread cookies this year? Whether you’re making them for the gingerbread cookie contest or just baking a batch to serve to your family, it never hurts to have a few original ideas to keep the look of the cookies fresh year after year. I dressed up this batch like paper dolls – edible paper dolls. When I was rolling ... Read More »

Trader Joe’s Peppermint Marshmallows, reviewed

tj's mint mallows

¬†I love marshmallow creme and fluffy, fresh jet-puffed marshmallows in both jumbo and mini sizes, but I am incredibly picky about “gourmet” marshmallows. Does that make me a marshmallow snob, or just a connoisseur? These high-priced¬†marshmallows have been becoming more and more common over the past couple of holiday seasons and are now appearing in more places and flavors than ever before. Picky though I ... Read More »

Are pricey cupcake mixes worth it?

cake mixes

As you might expect, I’m much more likely to advocate baking a batch of homemade cupcakes from scratch instead of using a boxed mix. The term “boxed mix” tends to assume that you’re using something that cost about $3 at the grocery store, though, and lately more and more high-end cake and cupcake mixes have been popping up in stores. Martha Stewat has some, Ina ... Read More »

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