Questions about cooking by dry heat without direct exposure to a flame, typically in an oven.

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3
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3answers
387 views

Adding fresh herbs in no-knead Bread

I am experimenting with the no Knead bread recipe and want to add herbs to the recipe. I have added fresh rosemary (great) and fresh oregano (not so) to the recipe. What other herbs would you ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Can couverture chocolate be substituted with other ingredients?

I have a brownie recipe that calls for couverture chocolate to be used. Unfortunately it is getting difficult (and expensive) to obtain this chocolate. Is there a way to get the same effect using ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

Flaky pie crust for sweet fruit pie: butter, shortening, lard, or combination?

I specify sweet fruit here because I think there would different good answers for a savory or a custard based pie.
9
votes
4answers
5k views

How to make pizza crust thin and elastic at the same time?

For the title: I'm not sure if "elastic" is the perfect word here, so is anyone knows better one - put it in the comment. I like thin pizza crust, but when I've made it myself it was hard and stiff - ...
19
votes
9answers
23k views

Techniques to get a nice golden-brown crust on bread

How do I make sure the crust of a baguette, etc. turns out a nice golden-brown when baking?
11
votes
7answers
9k views

When baking what works well as a sugar substitute?

I'm curious about what I can use for a sugar substitute while baking. I'm not interested in artificial sweetners, really. For instance, I've found that apple juice works well in some muffins. Are ...
17
votes
6answers
15k views

Why do my brownies end up so hard?

When I make brownies, I sometimes end up with really hard thin brownies instead of thick fudgy soft brownies. I bake them the same amount of time, use the same ingredients, and use the same equipment ...
8
votes
3answers
11k views

How do I prevent cream puff shells from deflating?

Every time I try to bake cream puffs the shells deflate before I can fill them with the cream. I have tried poking a hole in the shell with a toothpick in the last few minutes of baking. I have ...
8
votes
2answers
667 views

Proper Technique for Rolling Sugar Cookies

I have an old recipe of my grandmother's for sugar cookies and I'd love for them to turn out just like hers. However, whenever I try to roll out the dough, I find I either can't get it thin enough, it ...
9
votes
2answers
312 views

What is the proper usage of a pie bird?

I have one of those ceramic pie birds that vent steam from a pie while it bakes. What benefit does using this provide to the end result? Also, in what types of pies should it be used?
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What kind of beer for beer bread?

Beer bread is bread wherein beer is used for liquid and leavening. I tend to use a basic pilsner, but I'm a beer snob, and I've taken to wondering what would happen if I substituted something a little ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I bake bread using a mother culture?

If I want to make bread using a 'mother' culture what do I need to do? How do I go about starting the 'mother'? How should I keep the 'mother' going? and how do I use the mother in my bread? What ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Storing bread dough before baking

I'm looking to make a start in the world of baking bread, and have a quick question: Once my dough is kneaded, proved and ready to go in the oven (i.e. in the tin) - does it need to be baked ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

What determines the shape-holding ability of cookies?

What things can you vary to make cookies hold their shape better during cooking, and not spread out like a pancake? From my experimenting, the initial temperature of the dough before cooking seems to ...
6
votes
2answers
607 views

Do I really need pastry flour in my molasses cookie recipe?

I have a recipe for molasses cookies that calls for 3 parts regular flour to 1 part pastry flour for the flour component. It mentions that you can use whole wheat flour instead of pastry flour if ...
3
votes
3answers
952 views

How to melt glucose?

I recent backed a pie that included glucose and the recipe pretty much only said melt glucose...nothing about how to use it which lead me to much agony :) So the question is ... is there a common ...
15
votes
5answers
73k views

When is it necessary to cover food with aluminum foil during baking/roasting?

Often a recipe calls for covering a dish while it bakes. I understand that this can help to trap steam. How do you know when it's necessary to use aluminum foil when baking a dish without a recipe? ...
6
votes
3answers
973 views

How can I check if a blind baked dough is done?

Often, when I'm blind baking things, I'm always unsure whether or not the dough is finished. I always put a piece of foil between the crust and the rice. Is there an easy way to check the middle of ...
17
votes
3answers
6k views

How do you decide what temperature to bake at?

What is the logic behind the choice of temperature for baking? Obviously if you're following a recipe it will say what temperature to use, but I'd like to understand the reasoning behind it. Is it a ...
15
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is sugar a wet ingredient?

The last time I checked, most sugar is really dry (unless it's something like brown sugar). So why is it categorized as "wet"?
12
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I make a “baking powder” substitute in a pinch

Every once in while we run out of "Baking powder". What would be a good receipt for a substitute that you have used that works well. Thanks!!
10
votes
5answers
724 views

What are good references for Gluten free baking

I have several members of my family who are GF. Baking for them has become a real challenge. I'm looking for good references to learn to understand how to work with this limitation in my baking. What ...
7
votes
3answers
7k views

What are the best potatoes for baking?

What are the best varieties of potatoes to use for baking with a roast that will give a nice golden brown finish on the outside? [Edit: to clarify, I'm from Australia and we don't really distinguish ...
11
votes
8answers
15k views

How can I make macarons with “feet” in my oven at home?

I've tried many macaron recipes, and all have tasted very good. The problem is they always end up as a meringue, or looking like cookies. They usually don't have the "feet" that macarons are known ...
29
votes
7answers
7k views

What is the difference between various types of flour?

Is there a difference between the various types of flour that you see in the stores (i.e. Cake, Bread, and All-Purpose? Is it really necessary to stock 3 types of flour in my pantry or is this just a ...
10
votes
4answers
47k views

Can cheesecake be cooked without a spring-form pan?

I don't have a spring form pan but I watched a show where they seemed to cook their cheesecakes in regular pans. Is this possible or did I just not notice that they were in fact spring form pans? I ...
23
votes
7answers
50k views

When baking, is it better to use a gas or electric oven?

I'm looking for an oven and wanted to know if there is any difference between a gas or electric oven when it comes to baking things like cakes, biscuits and scones?
4
votes
1answer
126 views

What's the easiest dough for a Lemon Pie that still tastes good?

What dough would you recommend for when you need to wrap up a lemon pie fairly quickly?
11
votes
4answers
5k views

How can I keep meringue pie-topping from falling?

Nothin' better on a hot summer afternoon than a slice of cold pie... And nothin' says "summer" like a great big fluffy meringue topping over that slab of rhubarb/lemon/banana custard. Unfortunately, ...
17
votes
12answers
5k views

For Pizza cooking at home. What is the best alternative to the pizza stone?

For Pizza cooking at home. What is the best alternative to the pizza stone?
3
votes
1answer
83 views

How to stop sweet/sugary dressings from ruining a baking dish?

Through trial and error I've discovered that squeezing a fresh lime over roast parsnips (prior to roasting) make the end product absoutely sublime. The problem however is that the sticky sweet lime ...
12
votes
6answers
20k views

Is there an alternative to cornstarch

I made a some pies a couple of days ago. The recipe called for cornstarch and it thicken the filling after it came out of the oven. The only thing is I could taste a bit of the cornstarch when I was ...
9
votes
3answers
204 views

What are convenient and reliable ways to make the starter for rye bread?

The biggest issue with make good rye bread is to make the starter since it needs to rise in a very controlled temperature for some time. What are good and reliable ways to achieve this?
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a formula for converting pancake batter to waffle batter?

I have a wonderful pancake recipe that I would like to convert into a waffle recipe. Is there a generally accepted formula for doing this? Based on other recipes I've seen, it looks like the amount ...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

Does resting the dough for a long time reduce the need to knead the bread?

In this article by Chef Michael Smith, he mentions a recipe where leaving the dough to rest for 18 hours removes the need to knead the bread. Is this a viable alternative? I've tried the recipe and ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

Do I need to sift flour that is labeled sifted?

Is there really an advantage to sifting flour that I bought that was labeled 'sifted'?
10
votes
2answers
1k views

How long and at what temperature do the various parts of a chicken need to be cooked?

I'm interested in baking thighs, legs, breasts and wings. How long do each of these items need to bake and at what temperature?
54
votes
9answers
8k views

How can I get chewy chocolate chip cookies?

My chocolate chips cookies are always too crisp. How can I get chewy cookies, like those of Starbucks? Thank you to everyone who has answered. So far the tip that had the biggest impact was to ...