Now that Thanksgiving is over, the holiday shopping season starts in earnest. To help you shop for all the baking enthusiasts in your lives, I’ve created a series of gift guides featuring bakeware, accessories, cookbooks, and more.
This week’s gift guide features bakeware, kitchen textiles, and cookbooks. Click on the pictures for links to online buying sources. If you feel I’ve left anything off this list, feel free to e-mail me or share your ideas in the comments. I’m always happy to shop for baking supplies!
Now that we’ve successfully made it past Thanksgiving without thinking too much about Christmas, the holiday shopping season starts in earnest. To help you shop for all the baking enthusiasts in your lives, I’ve created a series of gift guides featuring bakeware, accessories, cookbooks, and more.
This week’s gift guide features big ticket items (which you should be able to get a good discount on this weekend) and items I consider baking essentials. Click on the pictures for links to online buying sources, some of which will bring you to my Amazon Affiliate store. If you feel I’ve left anything off this list, feel free to e-mail me or share your ideas in the comments. I’m always happy to shop for baking supplies!
Since college, I’ve been complaining to everyone who will listen that oven mitts need to be longer. I’m always doing several things at once when I’m baking, so I inevitably end up with a small burn on one forearm or the other at least once a year. Sure, I could pay a little more attention when I’m sticking my arms inside a 400° oven, but who’s got time for that? I’d prefer to have suitable protection, preferably up to my shoulders (perhaps even a cooking jumpsuit, which sounds like a good idea until you realize that you’re wearing an insulated jumpsuit in the same room as said 400° oven). My inspiration for these proposed extended oven mitts was welding gauntlets, which are long, leather gloves which protect your arms during welding.
I know everyone and their mother has written a list like this by now, but I felt like adding my two cents. I’ve found that the more time I spend baking, the stronger my opinions become on what should be made from scratch and what should just be bought. Aaah, those idealistic days back when I thought (spoiler alert!) making puff pastry from scratch was a good idea! Obviously, at the end of the day this all comes down to a matter of personal preference. While I may despise making puff pastry, it might be one of the baking endeavors that you look forward to and that’s totally cool. If you have tips or tricks that save you time, money, or effort, please share away!
I’ll bet that you’ve forgotten all about the Butter Battle Royale at this point. I had every intention of doing this more frequently than once every six months, but things happen (tasty, tasty things, fortunately). I was asked to make cookies for an event in my husband’s department at work, and he suggested that I do another cookie taste test since there would be more people than usual to participate. The original plan was to test store-bought butters against each other, but I had a sneaking suspicion that there would be no noticeable difference, so I made the executive decision to change it up. This time, I pitted Aldi brand butter against coconut oil.
This week, I’d like to give you the scoop on Kitchenaid’s Flex Edge Beater attachment for the 4.5 quart stand mixer. I had known about this mixer attachment since my husband bought one for his mother for Christmas, but since I didn’t have a stand mixer at the time, I missed out on all the fun. Since then, I have joined the ranks of proud Kitchenaid stand mixer owners (thanks again to said thoughtful husband), so when I saw this beater on clearance for $14.98 (list price $29.99) at Target, it seemed like a no-brainer to give it a whirl.
It’s officially time to start carving pumpkins, and with carved pumpkins comes pumpkin seeds. You could, of course, throw these away along with the skanky pumpkin guts with nary a second thought, but why waste such a tasty, versatile snack? Roasting pumpkin seeds is is super simple, and doing it yourself allows to you use whatever seasonings you want (because let’s be honest, those salted ones you get from the grocery store can get a bit gross after about two seeds).
Two weeks ago, I brought you savory pie crust. This week, let’s take a look at sweet pie crust. Once again, this recipe is made much easier with a food processor. I usually use this pie crust as-is without any additions to let the flavor of the filling stand out (and because it tastes sort of like a sugar cookie). In this instance, I’ve used grated lemon zest to complement an apple lemon pie I make in the summer, but you could substitute spices, other citrus zest, or anything else you like as long as it’s not too wet.
Until I got a food processor, I was staunchly of the belief that making pie crust from scratch was simply not worth the effort. Store-bought pie crust produces consistent results, and doesn’t require the nerve-wracking process of cutting frozen butter into flour by hand.