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Science: Helping Chocolate Keep Its Temper

Published November 1, 2013.

Traditional tempering techniques can be fussy and time-consuming, so we developed a far easier approach.

Fresh Peach Pie

Published September 1, 2013.

The juiciness of a perfect peach is sublime—except when you want to bake it into a pie.

Summer Berry Trifle

Published July 1, 2013.

To perfect this English classic, we’d need to ensure that the flavors and textures of each layer melded together—but without the whole thing turning to mush.

Science: A Closer Look at Gluten

Published July 1, 2013.

See and feel gluten with this simple kitchen experiment.

Marbled Blueberry Bundt Cake

Published May 1, 2013.

Tossing large, cultivated blueberries into a Bundt cake gave us big blue blowouts and little fresh flavor. We looked for a way to make the star of the show less of a problem.

Lemon Chiffon Pie

Published March 1, 2013.

While elegant and easy to make, this classic dessert is often marred by a texture that’s either too soupy or overly dense, along with lemon flavor that’s just so-so.

Best Butterscotch Pudding

Published January 1, 2013.

Our goal was to develop a fail-safe method for producing this dessert’s signature ­bittersweet flavor. While we were at it, we stumbled upon a better way to make pudding.

Chocolate-Espresso Dacquoise

Published November 1, 2012.

This multilayered showpiece of meringue and buttercream coated in ganache might just be the best dessert you’ll ever make—plus you can prepare it the day before.

Understanding Hydration Levels in Dough

Published September 1, 2010.

Sometimes cooking is an art. But when it comes to making dough, it is a science.

Storing Baking Chocolate

Published March 1, 2010.

Here’s how to prevent your chocolate from developing pale gray streaks caused by rapid changes in humidity or temperature.

Inverting Cakes

Published January 1, 2010.

Your cake is finished baking and ready to come out of the cake pan. Now what?

Making Chocolate Curls

Published November 1, 2009.

They may look like a fancy garnish, but the technique for scraping delicate curls from blocks of chocolate is actually quite simple. Here’s how.

Slicing Soft Cakes

Published November 1, 2009.

We found that knives tend to crush soft cakes. A cheese wire is far better for slicing. If you don’t have a cheese wire, an acceptable stand-in can be found in the medicine cabinet.

Storing Flour

Published September 1, 2009.

To ensure they stay fresh, store all-purpose flour in an air-tight storage container at room temperature and whole-wheat flour in a sealed bag in the freezer.

Handling Wet Dough

Published March 1, 2009.

Although it’s essential for our bread’s final texture, wet dough can quickly become unwieldy. Here’s how we handle it.

Free-Form Rustic Dinner Rolls

Published November 1, 2008.

Less handling is the key to an airy, chewy texture.

Properly Proofed Dough

Published November 1, 2008.

A reliable way of telling if your dough is ready for the oven.

Blind Baking a Pie Shell

Published November 1, 2008.

We develop a method for blind baking (prebaking) a pie shell when specific instructions aren’t given.

Adding a Decorative Edge to a Pie Shell

Published November 1, 2008.

Here are a few different ways to add a decorative edge to your pie crust.

Yeast Types

Published September 1, 2008.

What are the differences between instant and active dry yeasts?

Warming Tortillas

Published September 1, 2008.

Here are three easy ways to warm tortillas.

Pizza and Bread Crust Texture

Published September 1, 2008.

What happens when you add extra water to bread dough?

Best Apples for Baking

Published September 1, 2008.

Which are the best apples for baking?

Tapioca

Published July 1, 2008.

Tapioca thickens stews and sauces, and it protects fresh fruit flavor in a pie. But just what is tapioca and what type should you use?

Prepping Peaches

Published July 1, 2008.

When baking peaches in a dessert, the delicate skin can easily turn leathery. To avoid this problem, it needs to be removed. Here's how.

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