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27 May 2014

Cheese Please


The variety of cheeses offered in most supermarkets can be overwhelming, but don't be afraid to give them a try.  A few tips to get you started:
  • Buy blocks of blue or feta cheese rather than the prepackaged stuff.  You can crumble it yourself with almost no effort, it's cheaper, and it tastes much better.
  • If you feel like exploring a new cheese, try selecting one that looks similar to one you know you like.  For example, if you like Brie, try another soft cheese with a white rind.
  • If fresh mozzarella is available, don't pass it up.  The most authentic is packed in water, but if that's not available, go for mozzarella balls wrapped in plastic.
How to store your cheese once you get it home?  Ideally, wrapped in parchment, then plastic, but who has time for that?  Just place it in a small resealable plastic bag, squeeze out the air, and store in the in crisper drawer.

Mmm...tasty!



20 May 2014

Coffee Cubes


Love iced coffee?  Hate what happens when you don't drink it quickly enough and the ice melts, leaving you with watered down coffee?

If so, try this - brew a pot of coffee, allow to cool, then pour into ice cube trays and freeze.  Then next time you make yourself a glass of iced coffee, use the coffee cubes rather than regular ice cubes.  When the coffee cubes melt, you'll get stronger coffee, not a watered down version.

Bonus use for the coffee cubes - try using them in a glass of Bailey's Irish Cream.  Good stuff.

Mmm...tasty!


13 May 2014

Back to Black


If you need black buttercream icing for use on cakes, cookies, or other baked goods, try starting with chocolate buttercream rather than a white/light colored buttercream.  The chocolate gives you a darker base color to start meaning you won't have to use near as much black food coloring...and that's always a good thing.

Mmm...tasty!


07 May 2014

Variety

It's the spice of life.  At least that's what they always say.  Whose "they" anyone?  Not that I disagree with them, but sometimes it's nice to know who is giving you advice...

And exactly what type of spice is it, anyway?

But, I digress.  I have a variety of goodies today - everything from cupcakes to pretzel rods and more in between.

06 May 2014

Peak Perfection


Your recipe calls for beating whipped cream or egg whites to soft or stiff peaks...but how do you know the difference?  Easy - just lift up the beaters.

Soft peaks will be thick but still droopy - perfect for whipped cream.
Stiff peaks will stick straight up from the beaters without drooping - usually what you're looking for when making meringues.

Here's a visual, too!

Technique-Whipping Soft and Stiff Peaks
Illustration by Claudia Pearson
from Every Day with Rachael Ray Blog

Mmm...tasty!