Wednesday, August 27
Today I have a quick kitchen tip, which involves sharing yet another awesome find from my recent unexpected shopping spree on the King Arthur Flour website. In fact, today’s item is what started the whole shopping spree to begin with!
I love my silicon baking mats and use them multiple times every week. (Side note: if you don’t have one already, hop to it!) As much I use my SILPAT, I do still use parchment paper for various projects, including when I make granola bars each week. (Side note #2: I cook granola bars on parchment paper, then tear the paper into small pieces to place between the layers of granola bars in my storage container. Works great!)
I don’t remember the details, but for some reason one day on Facebook two of my food blogging friends Barbara and Diane told me about flat parchment baking sheets. I had always just bought parchment paper in a roll at the grocery store and didn’t even know flat sheets existed. Diane and Barbara told me how awesome the sheets were so I decided to order some on the King Arthur website (along with many, many, many other wonderful items I didn’t know I needed but totally did).
Anyway, the bottom line is that I love the parchment paper sheets just as much as Diane and Barbara do. Those ladies were so right. The flat sheets are much easier to work with than the rolled up paper, which tends to curl easily when you’re trying to lay it out, and they fit perfectly in a cookie sheet. The flat parchment sheets are also easier to cut down to different sizes when making cakes. (Side note #3: You can also buy 9-inch and 8-inch round parchment paper sheets if you really don’t want to ever have to cut parchment paper yourself again.) One last benefit is the sheets that I got at King Arthur are also reusable. They’re pretty much magic.
Barbara lives in Utah and gets her parchment paper sheets at Orson Gygi. I am not fortunate enough to have a wonderful restaurant supply store near where I live, which is why I ordered mine online from King Arthur.
Happy parchment papering!
Tuesday, August 12
About six months ago I needed to order some parchment paper sheets from King Arthur and then proceeded to get totally sucked in and bought way more stuff than I was planning on (like the tulip baking cups). I had been wanting a bread box, mostly for when I make homemade bread. I had done some research but hadn’t found anything that I thought would work well.
Then I noticed this expandable bread keeper on the King Arthur site. It caught my eye for two reasons. First, it’s expandable. Second, it had an air vent. The biggest complaint I found with other bread boxes was that bread would go moldy. The vent seemed like the answer.
So, I bought the expandable bread keeper, got it in the mail, and then stuck it in a cupboard and forgot about it. Like, my-friend-Debbie-texted-me-one-day-and-asked-if-I-had-a-bread-box-and-I-told-her-no forgot about it. When we got home from vacation this summer, I stumbled on the bread box, broke it out and started using it. AND I LOVE IT.
The vent works great and has two settings, depending on how humid your climate is or if your bread is warm. I love that it can expand to different sized loaves, and it’s really tall so you can fit a lot in there. And there is also a little mini bread board inside, making it really easy to slice off the bread you need and then put it away.
This bread keeper is great for homemade bread but I do also use it for breads we buy at the store that come in paper bags (like fresh French and Italian breads). I’m using less plastic bags AND the bread keeps better. We even stored leftover muffins in there and it worked great – since the bread keeper is so tall, I just stacked two layers of muffins inside.
I had a loaf of crusty bread go moldy the other day, but it had been in there for a whole week, so, you know, obviously it went moldy. And it actually stayed UN-moldy much longer than when it’s in a plastic bag.
So, there you have it. I love my expandable bread keeper and I’ll never forget its existence ever again! If you’re in the market for a bread box, I know it’s not as cute as some of the metal retro ones out there, but I think the function on this far exceeds the need for a glamorous bread box. Just sayin’.
Anyone have any bread box advice? Do you have on you love? Tell us about it!
Posted by Jane Maynard at 9:48 am 5 Comments
Categories: fab faves, Kitchen Tips, the goods Tags: bread box, bread keeper, expandable bread keeper, king arthur flour, kitchen equipment, kitchen gadgets, kitchen tips |
Thursday, July 31
A couple years ago I started noticing really cute muffin liners at coffee shops that sort of stuck up on top. I had been keeping my eye out for them at the store but never found them anywhere. Then, one day when I sent on a mini shopping spree on the King Arthur website, there they were. Tulip muffin papers. I of course put them in my cart immediately! Imagine my delight when I found them a few months later at Target. Yay!
Tulip baking cups are my new favorite baking cups, a.k.a. muffin papers, a.k.a. muffin liners, a.k.a. cupcake liners, a.k.a. they have a lot of names, apparently. Whatever you call them, they are wicked cute and I’m loving them!
Here’s why I like tulip liners:
- Tulip liners are really easy to separate when you’re putting them in the pan. Makes them a bit quicker to set up than traditional baking cups, which I almost always accidentally double up a few times per batch.
- No batter spillover on your pans! I think this is my most favorite aspect of these liners.
- They’re purrrrty.
- If you’re in a pinch and find yourself without cupcake liners, you can make your own tulip liners using small squares of parchment paper. Just Google “diy tulip cupcake liners” and you’ll find a plethora of tutorials.
A few more notes for when you use them as well as where to buy them:
- You can cook cupcakes as well as muffins in these liners, although I have yet to make cupcakes myself. If you make cupcakes, you’ll need to pipe on the frosting.
- If you make muffins with these liners, you’re not really going to get a “muffin top.” The tops still get the same texture as a normal muffin, but they don’t have that classic muffin top shape. In fact, it’s pretty much stump central. (When Nate and I realized I was making muffin stumps, it made us laugh so hard. It’s safe to say Elaine would not like these muffin liners.)
- When filling the liners with batter, do so carefully. If you drip or accidentally get batter on the upper part of the liner, it will bake to a dark color so you’re liner will have ugly spots. Not the end of the world but something to keep in mind.
- Like I mentioned, I recently found PaperChef tulip baking cups at Target. You can also buy tulip liners online at various sites like the King Arthur website and Amazon. Please note if you order them from somewhere online, depending on how they are packaged when shipped they may arrived “squished.” I was able to straighten mine out after some careful bending. Customer reviews on Amazon mentioned the same problem with some of the liners you can order there.
Wow. I had no idea I had so much to say on the subject of tulip baking cups.
Monday, October 20
I made these cookies tonight. They were awesome.
I also made my whole wheat pancakes yesterday using the white whole wheat flour instead of traditional whole wheat flour, and they were even better than the first time I made them. This flour is awesome.
And my cookie recipe is pretty awesome, too…if I do say so myself. (I’m a little obsessed with making the perfect cookie. This is what I did tonight and it worked. This doesn’t mean next time it will work, but one can hope!)AWESOME Flour...and Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip CookiesAuthor: Jane MaynardRecipe type: DessertIngredients
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- >1 teaspoon vanilla
- <1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 3½ cups oats
- 1 package chocolate chips
- Mix butter and sugars. Add eggs & vanilla – mix. Add soda, powder and salt – mix. Add flour and oats – mix. Add chocolate chips and, you guessed it, mix. Bake at 325 degrees F for appx 15 minutes (pull them out a LITTLE before you think they’re supposed to come out).
PS – I apologize for the indiscriminate use of the word “awesome” in this post. I plan to use a thesaurus next time, or maybe just write when I’m not so sleepy. 😉