Category Archives: How-To’s and Tips

How to Butter (or Oil) a Bundt Pan

How to Butter (or Oil) a Bundt Pan

Bundt cakes are always impressive, thanks to the beautifully fluted and shaped pans that they are baked in. Though the cakes are easy to make compared to layer cakes because they (typically) require no frosting or special post-baking preparation before you can serve them, they’re not always easy to bake. Bundt cakes can get stuck in the nooks and crannies of the same pans that ... Read More »

How to Make No-Cook Meringue Buttercream

How to Make No-Cook Meringue Buttercream

There are two main kinds of buttercream frostings: cooked and uncooked. The uncooked buttercream is also known as American buttercream, and it is made simply by beating butter and confectioners’ sugar (along with milk and flavorings) until it is thick and creamy. The cooked buttercreams start with a hot meringue, which has butter (and flavorings) beaten into it after it has cooled. The meringue-based buttercreams ... Read More »

Chocolate Chips vs Chocolate Chunks in Baking

Chocolate Chips vs Chocolate Chunks in Baking

Chocolate is one ingredient that I always have in my pantry, and in a variety of forms. I have chocolate bars – everything from white chocolate to unsweetened chocolate – as well as chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, chocolate powder (mostly for hot chocolate) and cocoa powder. Chocolate chips and chocolate chunks are the two items that I reach for the most because, after all, aren’t ... Read More »

How to Make Barrel Aged Vanilla Extract at Home (Without a Barrel)

How to Make Barrel Aged Vanilla Extract

Many spirits are barrel-aged, including rum, whiskey and even gin, to name a few, because spending time in a barrel softens the bite of the alcohol and adds additional flavors to the spirit. Most – but not all – spirits are aged in oak barrels and the wood will add slightly different properties depending on how it was prepared. These days, people have been experimenting ... Read More »

How to Bloom Gelatin

How to Bloom Gelatin

When you are working with gelatin in a recipe, the directions will typically ask you to “bloom” the gelatin before using it.¬†Blooming is the process of soaking gelatin in cold water before using it. The water serves to soften the gelatin, whether you are using gelatin sheets or powdered gelatin, and prepare it to dissolve easily when combined with the rest of your ingredients. If ... Read More »

How to Cut Through Toasted Marshmallow

How to Cut Through Toasted Marshmallow

Sticky foods tend to be more difficult to cut through than others and toasted marshmallows may be one of the trickiest of all. Not only is the marshmallow gooey inside, but you need to preserve as much of the crisp exterior as possible and prevent the marshmallow from becoming completely smushed. Now, if you’re toasting marshmallows to make s’mores, you probably don’t need to cut ... Read More »

How to Toast Pecans in the Oven

How to Toast Pecans in the Oven

There are lots of recipes that call for pecans, from muffins to ice cream to pie, and just about every single one of those recipes will be better if you make it with toasted pecans instead of untoasted ones. Toasted nuts have a firmer texture than untoasted nuts and have a richer, more complex flavor that lacks the vegetal notes you sometimes find in raw ... Read More »

How to Neatly Cut a Meringue Pie

How to Neatly Cut a Meringue Pie

Meringue-topped pies can be very challenging to cut because the meringue can stick to the knife and tear, resulting in slices that are still tasty, but don’t look as pretty as they could. When you go to the trouble of making a beautiful meringue to top your pie, I think that you deserve a slice that looks picture-perfect – don’t you? Fortunately, it is possible ... Read More »

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