Category Archives: Sweet Stuff

What is lemon curd?

Lemon curd is a thick, creamy spread that is made by cooking together lemon juice, egg yolks and sugar. Fresh lemon juice and sugar provide the flavor of the curd, while the egg yolks serve to thicken up the mixture as it cooks, just as eggs thicken up a cooked custard. Most curd recipes also call for butter to be added to the finished curd, ... Read More »

The History of Oreos

Oreo stamps, 1916-1924

Oreo cookies are one of the most beloved and most easily recognizable cookies that you can find anywhere – and there are many reasons why people love them (even when they regularly bake cookies at home!). Oreos made their debut 100 years ago, at the Nabisco factory in New York on March 6, 1912. The sandwich cookies were originally available in two flavors: lemon meringue ... Read More »

How to Temper Chocolate at Home

Melted Chocolate

Tempered chocolate is very glossy, has a firm finish and melts smoothly at around body temperature. Simply melting the chocolate before you use it to dip berries, truffles or other goodies does not temper it. The process of tempering involves raising and lowering the temperature of the chocolate to encourage strong, organized crystallization of the cocoa butter so that the finished chocolate will have that ... Read More »

Dark Chocolate vs. Semisweet Chocolate Chips in Chocolate Chip Cookies

See's Chocolate Chips

Semisweet chocolate chips are the default mix-in for most chocolate chip cookie recipes. Over the past several years, consumers have seen a huge increase in the variety of chocolate chips (and chocolate chunks) available at the grocery store as options for baking. One question I get asked frequently is whether it is ok to substitute one type of chocolate chips for another, and what difference ... Read More »

What is chocolate bloom?

Chocolate Bloom

Imagine that you pull an unopened bar of your favorite chocolate out of the pantry, eager to take a bite, only to discover a whitish film discoloring the surface of your treat. This is a common occurrence and brings up many questions. What is the white layer? Is the chocolate still safe to eat? Can I still bake with it? The whitish layer is what ... Read More »

What does it mean to temper chocolate?

Tempered chocolates

Tempering is a word that means improving the consistency, durability or hardness of a substance by heating and cooling it. Many substances, including metals, are tempered but the most important one might be chocolate. Tempered chocolate is very glossy, has a firm finish and melts smoothly at around body temperature. It is chocolate at its very best, and tempered chocolate is what most good quality ... Read More »

Nestle Toll House Dark Chocolate Baking Bar, reviewed

Nestle Toll House Dark Chocolate Baking Bar

When you think of Nestle Toll House, you probably think of their chocolate chips and classic chocolate chip cookies. The company makes a wide variety of chocolate chips, including seasonal Mint Chocolate Chips and fancy-looking Peanut Butter Swirled Chips. Due to the ever-increasing popularity of dark chocolate (and to more consumers interested in quality chocolate), Dark Chocolate Morsels with 53% cacao content were introduced to ... Read More »

What is white chocolate?

White Chocolate

White chocolate is a chocolate confection made with cocoa butter, sugar, milk solids and vanilla, the same ingredients that you’ll find in milk chocolate with the exception of cocoa powder. Cocoa powder is what gives dark and milk chocolates their characteristic chocolate flavor and color. With white chocolate, you’re left with a very creamy and sweet product that has a strong flavor of milk and ... Read More »

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