Category Archives: The Sneaky Chef: Clever Ways to Save Your Sanity in the Kitchen

This is an entire category dedicated to the joy of finding your way around the art of food. Most of the ideas I’ve got in here were pirated, or, at the very least, inspired by someone else’s genius. With time and practice, I hope to come up with a few of my own…

Super Slick: Making Buttercream Look Like Fondant

After making milk chocolate buttercream frosting, I really wanted a smooth look to it after icing the cake. My offset spatula was doing well, but I wanted a fondant look. I had a thought: plastic wrap? Parchment paper? Both? Giving the frosting a little time to dry slightly, I pressed gently all over the top [...]

Criss-Cross, Hooray for Floss! – Slicing up Cinnamon Rolls

Problem: Slicing filled and rolled cinnamon roll dough that results in Cinnamon Ovals, rather than Rolls… Solution: Dental floss: It’s easier to grip than thread, but that will work in a pinch. Pull out about 1 1/2 feet of floss. Slip one end of the floss under your log of dough, pulling the ends upward [...]

Let it Snow, Baby; Let it Reindeer: Fix it with Powdered Sugar

Problem: no time or no ingredients to make frosting for a cake or brownies… Solution: Throw a few tablespoons of powdered sugar in a sieve (I’ve even used a tea-ball infuser in a moment of desperation) and shake gently over your baked treats. Pretty pretty.

Fluffy Puff: Frosting with Altitude

Problem: flat, thick frosting that looks more like ganache, and might not be enough to frost your cupcakes… Solution: Beat 1 cup chilled heavy whipping cream almost to where it starts to seem like it’s turning to butter. Gently fold part of the whipped cream into your thick frosting (this is called lightening) then fold [...]

Even Steven: Baking Quickbreads in Glass

Problem: Baking zucchini, banana, pumpkin, sweet potato, lemon, blueberry, cranberry, chocolate chip or any other kind of quickbread in a 8 or 9 inch glass loaf pan and the crust is getting way overdone but the center is still goo. Solution: When you preheat the oven, lower the baking temperature for the recipe 25 degrees [...]