Keep Super Sticky Dough from Binding to Your Hands With a Little Oil

…during the holiday season, no matter how vigilant you are about following these commandments, sometimes you still need a little help, some extra assurance, a few aces up your sleeve.

So we gathered 52 of our smartest tips—the tricks and techniques picked up from years of experience and experiments but that don’t necessarily fall under the Great Baking Laws—and put them in one place.

Source: Our 52 Favorite Tips for Smarter Holiday Baking

I had a similar problem with a recipe not too long ago, incredibly sticky. Instead of wasting a ton of dough into the kitchen sink I thought I’d try nitrile gloves, clean hands to do clean stuff and doughy hands to do doughy stuff. Turns out… the dough won’t stick to nitrile gloves!

Get Excited About Parchment Paper, One of the Most Useful Things In Your Kitchen

It’s the non-waxy wax paper 😉

For those of you who don’t know, parchment paper is a grease and water-resistant paper that has been treated with some sort of coating to give it its non-stick properties (usually silicone). Contrary to what you may have heard, parchment paper is not wax paper. Wax paper is coated with wax (duh) and, though it’s a good parchment substitute for tasks like letting chocolate-covered strawberries set or covering a work space for easy cleanup, it doesn’t do so well in the oven, as the wax can melt or even catch on fire (which is usually frowned upon).

Source: Get Excited About Parchment Paper, One of the Most Useful Things In Your Kitchen

FYI – en papillote does not mean you eat the parchment.  Not saying I witnessed someone do it …but I totally did.

Last time I looked, parchment paper cost more than wax paper.

Turn Overcooked Rice Into Tasty, Crispy Crackers

To me, “overcooked” usually means singed to a black, unrecognizable putrescence.  Followed by desperate soaking of the pot, before working with the roughest scrub bud I can find.  Rinse, repeat… 😉

But I admit – that does look really easy to do.  Add a dash of your favourite seasoning…  You can also make fish cakes out of the leftover rice, or make this simple soup.  Quickly rinse rice with a French Press (AKA Bodum) if you need to.  But be aware that there is arsenic in rice.

Roll Chocolate Pastries in Cocoa Powder Instead of Flour for More Chocolately Flavor

Be prepared to get your hands dirty and apply sprinkles liberally.

Source: 10 Tips from One Week as a Professional Baker

It also keeps chocolate cookies brown (or black). I frequently make black bat sugar cookies and they come out looking much better with cocoa powder instead of flour.

The Best Method for Making Any Kind of Stuffed Pancakes

If you click that link, it will only make you hungry. You’ve been warned 😉

…there are plenty of recipes out there for “Nutella-stuffed pancakes,” which consist of sandwiching Nutella between two pancakes. But this recipe includes a life-changing trick for getting perfect portions of Nutella into one pancake.

Source: An Ingenious Trick for Making Perfect Nutella-Stuffed Pancakes

Mind that there is vitamin K in nutella.  But the trick would work for any sort of filling – peanut butter, jam, jelly, chocolate, fruit compote…

Freeze Leftover Tomato Paste Into Ready to Use Spoonfuls

Opening a jar of tomato paste can feel a bit like a Chopped-style challenge.  How many uses for this tomato paste can I think of before it goes moldy and I have to throw it away?  I tend to pay a little more for my tomato paste, opting for a glass jar over a can, so that there are no BPA lining worries.  Granted, it’s not an enormous expense, but it’s still enough that I’d rather not waste food.  I’ll add the paste to marinades, soups, and chili, but most of the time in the battle of the tomato paste, I lose.  The glass is recycled and the tomato paste goes down the drain…

Source: Quick Tip: Freeze Tomato Paste and Never Toss a Moldy Jar Again

You could put the paste in a ziplock bag, squeeze all the air out (if you don’t have a vacuum packing setup), and freeze it flat.  Save a lot of space in the freezer, and when you’re ready to use it – just break off what you need.  This also melts much faster in soups and sauces than a ball would.

Line Round Cake Pans with Parchment Paper Perfectly, Every Time

This is one of the times in your life that you can put calculus to use.  Mark it on your calendar so you can accuse your high school math teacher at a reunion.  I’m not bitter, no… 😀

Or you could put the pan on the parchment paper, trace it with a pen/pencil, and then cut out the circle.

Pizza: Best Way to Store and Reheat

The real problem (if you can really call it a problem) is figuring out the best way to eat [pizza] after Day 1. There are of course those that believe that reheating pizza in any fashion constitutes true sacrilege — that one should always eat their leftovers cold. Certainly, cold pizza can be a delicious and easy option.

But sometimes you want something warm in your belly and wish to bring back the original flavors and get the hot grease flowing again. How should you go about doing so? Do you pop it in the microwave? Throw it on the grill? Luckily for you, we decided to test out the best ways to reheat your pizza. Our findings may surprise you (as they did me), and may in fact lead to a slice of pie that was even better than the original.

Source: The Best Way To Reheat Pizza

  • There’s no conclusion to the article to contrast the methods of reheating
  • Wax or Parchment paper (they’re different things) are a better choice than paper towel, which risks fusing with the pizza (what’s a little more fiber?).  Parchment paper is better…
  • Using foil effectively rules out reheating in the microwave