69 votes

Can I use cooking sherry instead of red wine in my stew?

"Cooking wine" is unfortunately ubiquitous on US mega-mart shelves. It is notoriously bad. I mean really, really notoriously bad. It starts bad, and then they add obscene amounts of salt so that it ...
Jolenealaska's user avatar
  • 58.5k
66 votes
Accepted

Mint vs Peppermint

Peppermint is a hybrid breed of two plants belonging to the mint genus, spearmint and watermint. In my experience, when 'mint' is referred to by itself without any other descriptors, it usually refers ...
dark stuart's user avatar
55 votes

What to use instead of cling film to wrap pastry

It is less useful than what you think Frame challenge incoming... Cling film is very light and made especially for such purposes. The environmental damage is extremely low - which limits what ...
Stian's user avatar
  • 734
55 votes

What type of salt for sourdough bread baking?

This may come across as a little cynical ;) Don't believe the hype. Salt is salt. The difference between Himalayan, iodised & kosher is so small you'll never taste it. They're all 98%+ sodium ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 30k
41 votes

Why use onions in cooking?

Their primary purpose is flavor, although (as mentioned by @David Richerby) they can also be used for thickening in some cases. If you don't like them, but other members of your household do, then it ...
Jolenealaska's user avatar
  • 58.5k
41 votes

Keep milk (or milk alternative) for a day without a fridge

I would invest in a small thermos bottle, about the size of what you need for one day. They are not only designed to keep hot food hot, they can also keep cold food cold. Choose a size that will be as ...
Stephie's user avatar
  • 59.5k
40 votes

What's a good substitute for basil in pesto sauce?

If we're talking about the big classic pesto alla genovese, then unfortunately... There is no substitute. Basil is the majority ingredient in pesto. None of the other suggestions here will taste even ...
J...'s user avatar
  • 952
38 votes
Accepted

How did replacing flour in muffins go so wrong?

Muffins and cakes rise because of chemical leavening agents and the expansion of hot gasses, they stay risen because the flour and sugar forms a structure which traps the air, then solidifies enough ...
GdD's user avatar
  • 76.3k
37 votes

What type of salt for sourdough bread baking?

Any salt will do. The trick is figuring how much salt. If a formula is based on a specific salt, and you switch, you need to adjust. For example this author did a comparison. She weighed 1 level ...
moscafj's user avatar
  • 74.7k
36 votes

How can I make a last-minute birthday cake without using artificial flavor or color?

The options are very wide. You are not telling us what kind of cake you have in mind, so I'll be making a few assumptions here. But once you start thinking outside the box that equals "birthday cake" ...
Stephie's user avatar
  • 59.5k
36 votes

Substitute for onion sweetness?

You might try carrot. It is a common ingredient, often used in Italian cuisine, for example, to counteract the acidity in tomatoes, when making a sauce. In my example it is grated, then simmered ...
moscafj's user avatar
  • 74.7k
35 votes

Keep milk (or milk alternative) for a day without a fridge

Your best bet for longevity is UHT milk - in individual portions. It's the same stuff you get in hotel rooms. Pic from Amazon, anonymised. Though it doesn't taste the same as 'real' milk it's ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 30k
35 votes
Accepted

Can I use baking powder in place of baking soda for dipping pretzels?

No, you cannot use baking powder to dip pretzels. To get their characteristic color and crust, pretzels are traditionally boiled in lye. Another alkaline solution, i.e. those containing a base, can be ...
Benjamin Kuykendall's user avatar
34 votes

What should I use for old recipes that call for 'buttermilk'?

Given the variabilities in "buttermilk" from place to place and time to time, you should get sufficiently equivalent results by substituting modern cultured buttermilk. That's the job it was designed ...
Joshua Engel's user avatar
  • 4,426
33 votes
Accepted

What's a good substitute for basil in pesto sauce?

The good news is, you can make pesto almost out of any green using the same process and proportions as with basil -- it just changes the flavor profile. I make pesto-style sauces out of chives, ...
franko's user avatar
  • 5,976
31 votes

Can olive oil be substituted for vegetable oil in a box cake mix?

Yes. As far as the mix is concerned, oil is oil. You're not reaching high enough temperatures to worry about smoke points or anything, and you're not trying to use a weird substitution (applesauce ...
senschen's user avatar
  • 3,035
30 votes
Accepted

Does the preparation of chicken liver mousse require force feeding of chickens?

There's no need to force-feed the chickens. Chicken Liver Mousse is just a posh word for a smooth paté, with sometimes a bit of extra aeration. For every chicken, there's a chicken liver. The world ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 30k
29 votes
Accepted

What's the point of "cheese alternative" that has dairy in it?

Lactose intolerance (which is different from a milk allergy, which is a smaller group) comes in varying degrees, so this may be useful for people who can have a bit of lactose (who can process casein ...
Batman's user avatar
  • 1,957
29 votes
Accepted

How does one alter a recipe that calls for one fruit with another fruit of differing water content?

There's no trick, there's math. 100g of banana is about 75g of water (1g of water is 1ml, so easy to measure), 12g of sugar, and 13g of fiber and other stuff. A pumpkin is about 92g of water and 3 ...
GdD's user avatar
  • 76.3k
29 votes

How did replacing flour in muffins go so wrong?

what chemical reaction happened It wasn't a chemical reaction, it was a physical reaction. Everything you describe sounds like your batter was able to trap air much better than a typical muffin ...
rumtscho's user avatar
  • 139k
28 votes
Accepted

What exactly is apple cider?

What is apple cider? In earlier times, it just meant "apple juice". Nobody had different words for the non-alcoholic and the alcoholic variety, because the freshly pressed (and sometimes ...
rumtscho's user avatar
  • 139k
28 votes

How to replace large eggs for medium in a recipe?

There’s a good chance that the difference of what will be perhaps half a tablespoon just won’t matter in the final product. You don’t say what exactly you are going to make, but if your recipe was so ...
Stephie's user avatar
  • 59.5k
28 votes
Accepted

Dried basil leaves instead of bay leaves

No, this would be a bad substitution. Instead use cinnamon, in a smaller quantity, and preferably whole. Or leave it out entirely and rely on the other spices in your dish. In my opinion at least, ...
Benjamin Kuykendall's user avatar
26 votes
Accepted

Can I substitute salts 1:1 by weight?

Yes. In general diamond crystal kosher salt requires about twice the amount (by volume) as table salt, but measuring by weight is best and works with any salt.
myklbykl's user avatar
  • 4,854
26 votes
Accepted

Can I bake cookies without baking paper?

First of all, if your baking sheet is nonstick you may not need baking paper at all. If it is not, then either directly greasing the baking sheet, or putting tinfoil on it and greasing that works ...
user141592's user avatar
  • 10.6k
25 votes
Accepted

How to replace booze in eggnog?

The easiest way is rum or brandy extract. The flavor is milder, but satisfactory enough. (Rum extract is far easier to find than brandy extract.) Most brands still have some alcohol (significantly ...
Erica's user avatar
  • 8,402
25 votes

Can I use cream of tartar instead of wine to avoid alcohol in a meat braise or risotto?

There's a few misconceptions there. Tartaric acid, malic acid, acetic acid, and citric acid are all "heat stable" in the sense that they won't boil or decompose at the temperature of boiling ...
Sneftel's user avatar
  • 28.6k
25 votes
Accepted

What can I use in lieu of bacon in boeuf bourguignon and coq au vin?

You could perhaps take some ideas from vegetarian recipes. Obviously, I know chicken isn't vegetarian, but if you need to avoid bacon there are vegetarian options for imparting the flavouring that you ...
Billy Kerr's user avatar
  • 1,819
24 votes

How do I substitute almond flour for all purpose flour?

There is no general replacement. Almond flour has very little in common with all-purpose flour, and behaves very differently in baking. Your idea of adding gluten is very interesting - many flourless ...
rumtscho's user avatar
  • 139k

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