The thorough folks at Cook’s Illustrated recently tested and rated metal baking pans. And the winner: the Williams Sonoma Goldtouch Nonstick Rectangular Pan. It’s expensive but worth it, the experts say, because it repeatedly turned out professional results. To see how the other pans rated, read the entire review.
Happy National Cookie Day!! To help you celebrate, Our Cookie Journal is filled with loads of easy-to-bake cookies appropriate for any occasion. Today’s entry has two ideas perfect for today. But the blog has plenty of other recipes and stories about baking cookies. In fact, Our Cookie Journal is celebrating 20 years of baking cookies at Christmastime with 20 different cookies this month. Cookie No.2: Cinnamon Swirl Cookies.
This recipe from Simply Southern Baking calls for three sticks of butter! What else is there to say? Of course, Buttery Toffee Walnut Cookies can’t be made regularly but surely they deserve to be trotted out as an occasional treat? Anyway, you won’t have to worry about the calories — they disappear so quickly, you’ll be lucky to get more than one!
I saw this article at lubbockonline.com when it was published Tuesday and didn’t bother shariing it because the writer is seriously confused about Macaroons and Macarons. The only reason I’m including it here now is because, despite several readers’ comments pointing out the error, the story stands. As written. It hasn’t been corrected and the readers’ responses haven’t been addressed. It’s too bad. So, here is a story about a “food writer” who thinks that Macaroons and Macarons are the same thing, only one is a drop cookie made with coconut and the others are made with almond flour and come in pretty colors!
Bake Brave! That’s this year’s challenge on World Baking Day, which is being observed on Sunday, May 19. The idea is to test yourself with a recipe that challenges your skills in the kitchen. To that end, 100 recipes have been compiled by Bake Brave Ambassadors (baking enthusiasts from around the world) at worldbakingday.com.
The interactive website encourages you to “step out of your comfort zone and bake something you’ve never baked before.” From the homepage, you are prompted to select your baking level, from “I bake and cross my fingers” to “I bake, therefore I am.” If your particular skill set can’t be categorized, feel free to skip that step and head straight for the recipes, which are ranked from 1 (Banana Muffins) to 100 (The Ultimate Challenge Cream Puff Cake).
There doesn’t seem to be many recipes aside from cakes, though. I might be a cookie cuckoo, but I love baking cakes too. In fact, I recently bought a new bundt cake pan that I cannot wait to use. So, I would think that the website would include a greater variety of baked goods, with more cookies, breads and pies. There is a recipe for chocolate chip cookies (level 3) and a treacle tart (71) but you’ll find greater choice if you decide to bake a cake.
Once you select a recipe, you click on a bar that says what level you’ve chosen. This takes you to a badge that you can download and share. I chose No. 53, Cream Cheese Brownies (they pass for cookies) along with 29 other people (so far).
I’m also going to bake a cake using my new bundt pan, which makes such an elegant presentation. The only thing left to decide is whether I’ll make lemon or chocolate. Then I’ll simply drizzle the top with a vanilla glaze, letting it drip down the sides and slice according to the number of guests – hunks or slivers!
I’ll be writing more posts about World Baking Day here through Sunday, so check back often for more recipes and information. And let me know what you’ve decided to create for World Baking Day.
It seems there’s a surge in home baking! As someone who has always preferred my homemade version to nearly anything that can be purchased pre-made, I welcome this news. I found it very difficult when I first moved to England from America to find the necessary ingredients and tools of the trade to bake cookies and cakes at home. Now local supermarkets have embraced the home baker and are offering innovative solutions to help and inspire you.
At a weekend visit to Waitrose, I snapped a quick photo of their new home baking line, displayed at the front of the store to tempt and tantalize.
Sainsbury’s too has made it easier to produce quality baked goods with their new home baking range. Let’s hope this trend is here to stay!