Two Speedy Ways to Soften Butter

Published September 1, 2015.

A stick of butter takes about an hour to soften at room temperature, so we came up with two methods for speeding the process.

Parmesan Rind Substitutes

Published September 1, 2015.

We wanted to know if the rinds from other aged cheeses could do the job usually reserved for Parmesan.

The Mayo Advantage for Grilled Cheese

Published September 1, 2015.

Both butter and mayonnaise produce grilled-cheese sandwiches with crisp, well-browned exteriors.

With Whipped Cream, Temperature Matters

Published July 1, 2015.

Conventional wisdom says to make sure your cream is cold before whipping it, but we wondered exactly how much temperature matters, so we decided to run a few tests.

Using Whipped Cream Cheese in Recipes

Published January 1, 2015.

Are regular cream cheese and whipped cream cheese interchangeable in recipes?

Halloumi Cheese

Published November 1, 2014.

Some supermarkets are starting to carry halloumi cheese. What’s the best way to use it?

Ammonia Odors in Cheese

Published September 1, 2014.

Sometimes, upon unwrapping a newly purchased fine cheese, a pungent ammonia odor will be released. Does this mean the cheese has spoiled?

Browning Salted Butter

Published September 1, 2014.

Can salted butter be substituted for unsalted when making brown butter sauces?

Why Cold Butter Keeps Sauces from Breaking

Published May 1, 2014.

Classic French cookbooks call for slowly whisking in cold pieces of butter, a little at a time. We wanted to confirm if this is really necessary.

Storing Cream Cheese Frosting

Published March 1, 2014.

Can a cake with cream cheese frosting be stored at room temperature, or does it have to be refrigerated?

Stabilizing Whipped Cream

Published March 1, 2014.

Is there a way to keep whipped cream from weeping if you want to make it ahead of time?

Buttermilk Substitutes for Pancakes

Published January 1, 2014.

Adding lemon juice or vinegar to regular milk in order to approximate buttermilk is a common trick, but some may not like the resulting flavor when used in pancakes. Are there any other options?

Yes, You Can Freeze Cheese

Published November 1, 2013.

We wanted to know how various cheeses would fare when stashed in the freezer for six weeks. The results surprised us.

Eggnog: Better—and Safer—with Age

Published November 1, 2013.

Uneasy about using raw eggs in your eggnog? This method will put you at ease.

Reheating Soft-Cooked Eggs

Published September 1, 2013.

Can soft-cooked eggs be reheated while maintaining their runny yolks?

Why Young Cheese Melts Better than Aged Cheese

Published September 1, 2013.

Anyone who’s melted cheese for a sandwich knows that some types melt better than others, turning creamy without releasing fat. What factors account for the differences?

How to Store Feta Cheese

Published July 1, 2013.

What’s the best way to store feta cheese if it doesn’t come packed in a brine?

How to Make Crème Fraîche and Mexican Crema

Published May 1, 2013.

Why buy these cultured creams when you can easily make them at home?

Duck Eggs versus Chicken Eggs

Published January 1, 2013.

Do duck eggs differ in flavor or texture from chicken eggs?

How to Make Ghee

Published January 1, 2013.

Ghee, typically used in Indian cooking, may also be used as a slightly richer, more buttery substitute in any recipe that calls for clarified butter.

Freezing Cream Cheese

Published January 1, 2013.

Does cream cheese freeze well?

Rescuing Oversoftened Butter

Published January 1, 2013.

When softening butter in the microwave it's possible to accidentally oversoften part of the stick. Is there a way to bring melted butter back to solid form?

Conventional vs. "Real" Buttermilk

Published November 1, 2012.

Products labeled “real” buttermilk are popping up at supermarkets. Is it different from the buttermilk that you usually see?

Great Fake Mayo

Published July 1, 2012.

Here's our formula for great eggless mayonnaise.

British vs. American Cheddar: It's a Tie

Published July 1, 2012.

How do our favorite domestic cheddars stack up against the best of the old country?

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