Tagged With baking

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Baking beautiful bread requires the skillful manipulation of three big, messy variables: technique, equipment, and ingredients. Poor technique accounts for most subpar results, but a sudden change in kitchen conditions or ingredient availability can throw even a seasoned baker for a loop. If your bread has started acting up for seemingly no reason, your water might just be the culprit.

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I love a good shopping centre pretzel. Soft, slightly chewy, with a bunch of salt and that trademark hint of bitterness - few snacks are as comforting and nostalgic. I also love a good pretzel dog, pretzel bite or cheese-stuffed pretzel situation. I do not, however, love making dough.

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Being the son of a baker and, in a former life, a scientist, there are a lot of Universal Forces dictating that I should have a talent for baking. I'm not very good at baking. On top of that, I'm not into all those tears and painful pauses you see on Masterchef, either.

That's why I am stoked that Netflix has produced Nailed It, a TV show about people that aren't very good at baking. It is hilarious.

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Dessert and cocktails both come after dinner, but combining them is a tricky business indeed. The best boozy desserts neatly split the difference between sugary treats and nightcaps; the worst are indistinguishable from mild physical assault. Sadly, the latter is far more common than the former - but it doesn't have to be.

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For better or worse, cooking will always involve a certain amount of measuring. Usually these measurements are either by mass or volume, but sometimes dimensions come into play, and I am terrible at estimating dimensions.

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If you've happened to visit Pinterest in the last five years or so, you have no doubt seen a recipe or 10 for some iteration of three-ingredient, no-knead bread. These recipes are popular for good reason. Not only are these loaves extremely impressive for the amount of work they demand, they are excellent vehicles for any odds and ends you wish to rid your fridge of, from a handful of cheese to lonely fruits and vegetables.

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Alison Roman's salted butter chocolate chunk shortbread cookies are everywhere. Bon Appétit, Eater, Nylon, Smitten Kitchen and The New York Times have covered them in glowing detail; The Cookies pop up on my Instagram discover feed literally every day. The best recipes are more than the sum of their parts, but the sheer volume of breathless, googly-eyed reviews suggest that a concerning number of people have lived deprived, salted-butter-cookie-less lives until now.

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Valentine's Day is a holiday that can't escape symbolism and, besides hearts, roses are the most recognisable supposed sign of love and affection associated with February 14. You can give a dozen or so, sure, but if you like your gifts to be a little more edible, consider working a little rose water into your cooking.

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It has been well-documented that pressure-cooked cheesecake is the greatest trick the humble appliance has ever pulled, but such recipes are usually limited to one flavour. Here, with the clever use of little jars, we're going to make a cheesecake sampler perfect for those with fear of flavour commitment.

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Non-enzymatic browning gives us many gifts. The crust on a loaf of bread, the umami-rich taste of browned onions, the nutty wonder that is browned butter - all of these things are deeper, more flavorful versions of themselves. You've probably been browning your butter for some time now, but the good people at Serious Eats have figured out how to give cream the same treatment, with delicious results.

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Plenty of recipes call for ingredients to be at room temperature -- you've probably mastered the art of speedily softening butter, but what do you do when your eggs are chilling in the fridge, you're ready to bake, and your recipe wants them to be room temp?

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Everyone knows that cinnamon rolls are a delicious indulgence. What this recipe presupposes is… maybe they should be bigger? I mean like a lot bigger. It's possible, and honestly it's beautiful, too.

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Sugar biscuits are -- in some ways -- simple, but they are also one of the more difficult biscuits to execute flawlessly. The key is to strike that perfect balance of pretty and delicious. According to the Patron Saint of All That Is Baked, Stella Parks, coconut oil can get you there.

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Mise en place is a French phrase that roughly translates to "everything in its place". As a cooking technique, it's exactly what it sounds like: A method of preparing and organising ingredients to maximise a recipe's efficiency. So crucial is it to the function of a professional kitchen that, for most chefs, mise en place is a way of life - making it the original "pro tip" for home cooks.

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As a person who writes a column dedicated to lazy meals, I see a lot of recipes and videos for "simple" and "easy" dishes.. Most are shot from an overhead angle and include too much grade F cheese and ranch dressing for even my liking, but I came across something in my normal course of late-night Imgur browsing.

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It turns out that, while I am a very enthusiastic pie maker, I am not very good at it. I have seen a very wide gamut of pie failures over my baking career. Overcooked and cracked crusts, soggy bottoms, burnt edges, foul soup inside a crust -- I've been there. And this isn't as isolated as you'd think. These are all common failures in one's journey to a perfect pie, and we can learn from them. So join me, and let's get to problem solving.