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Frame: A Word on Recipes

January 8, 2011

I’m starting to learn that a well-written recipe makes a huge difference in one’s finished product, and this understanding is (hopefully) going to make me a much better recipe writer. After my semi-disastrous attempts at recreating sweets from the Flour cookbook, I’ve spent a few days using America’s Test Kitchen Magazine- a more instructional publication – to help me. The brownies I made a few days ago turned out very well, and last night I tried their “Light Cheese Bread,” which, frankly, looked disgusting in batter form…

…but baked up nicely. The recipe called for a mixture of cayenne, dry mustard, and black pepper – a surprising but winning combination. This is one of those dense “quick” breads that would be good to serve with stew or chili, but it’s not something you’d make a sandwich with.

While I’ve used the America’s Test Kitchen publications before, I hadn’t used them for baking. I don’t need as much guidance with cooking – so “recipes” frequently become “suggestions”- but with baking, I clearly require some hand holding. What I like about ATK is that it gives you a little history on the recipe, talks about what works/doesn’t work, and cautions you against common mistakes.

I wonder if ATK does donuts…


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