An ode to fruitcake that's easy to love, with a rum-orange ice cream base and real dried fruit, not chemically candied cherries.
'holidays' on Serious Eats
What's a better match for ice cream than hot fudge? Sure, the best fudge probably comes from your childhood scoop shop (don't things like that always taste better in memory?). But in the name of finding the best hot fudge you can buy, we tried 14 commercially available fudge sauces to find you the best.
We know, we know; just about any homemade loaf cake or pound cake will be better than Sara Lee or Entenmann's. We won't pretend that either could possibly compare. But there are some summer nights when you're at the grocery store and you're running late to a friend's cookout, and you're in charge of dessert, and you've got a beautiful crate of strawberries and some cream to whip and you just need something cake-like to serve with them. And in those moments, you're likely to be faced with Sara Lee and Entenmann's. So which way do you go?
I have a confession to make, dear readers. Until just a few days ago, I had no idea that this week was American Chocolate Week. It seems to me a perfect opportunity to go learn something about chocolate that you didn't know before; or try a new kind of chocolate; or test out that chocolate recipe you've been staring at for the last few months. Now, you can celebrate however you want, but in the slideshow are just a few of my suggestions.
Candy canes don't have to be eaten just as is; they can be use in hot cocoa, peppermint bark, as the straw for drinking juice out of a lemon, and more. Check out these suggestions from Howcast.
For a Christmas gift, pair one or two cakes with a bottle of sherry and wedge of aged hard cheese and you can't go wrong.
I upped the salt in this recipe significantly. Seriously, if you ever wondered what made a fancy restaurant dessert or an upscale bakery treat soooo tasty, it's almost certainly one of two things: lots and lots of salt, or lots and lots of butter. Both of these things are what make these cookies so tasty, and so very perfect for the holidays.
We love dark, spicy, molasses-laced gingerbread. Of course, there are tons of recipes for baking it from scratch but gingerbread mixes are a great option when you're short on time. Which brand to choose? We tested five: Betty Crocker, Krusteaz, Trader Joe's, Williams-Sonoma and King Arthur Flour. Did any pass as homemade-esque? Check out our results.
This recipe is my all-time favorite. In its most basic form, it combines oats, shredded coconut, pumpkin seeds, and almonds with brown sugar, maple syrup, and dried cranberries and peaches. But you should think of it as a template rather than a rigid recipe. This time, I also tossed in a handful of dried strawberries. You could swap the almonds for pecans or walnuts, or use honey instead of maple syrup.
As we said in our pumpkin pie taste-test, we're not big on endorsing frozen pies. The insta-pie typically tastes wrong and sad, but we realize how crazy the holidays get so we ventured into the freezer section to see if any decent frozen apple pies existed. Could they taste homemade? At all? Or more like a McDonald's apple pie pocket, which, for the record, we all need sometimes. We tried six brands: three of the classics (Marie Callenders, Sara Lee, and Mrs. Smith's) and three less processed, more "all natural" pies (Vermont Mystic, Amy's, and Wholly Wholsome). Many scoops of vanilla ice cream later, we found two winners.
If you're on the pro side of the pumpkin pie debate, chances are you have a favorite recipe. Maybe it's as simple as opening a can of the ready-to-plop-into-crust mix (that goes into a store-bought mix). Or you swear by the time-consuming and kitchen-wrecking ordeal that involves multiple bowls, a heavy pot, a box grater, a fine-mesh sieve, an instant-read thermometer, and another couple of hours. Is one necessarily better than the other? Or is it all just a matter of taste and nostalgia?
We're not big fans of frozen pie crusts. In fact, many of them taste like Play-doh. But if you're really in a pinch during the holidays, and the thought of making a crust from scratch is too discouraging and intimidating, we want you to somehow find pie. We are always pro-pie! So we tried the following nationally available brands, both baked plain and with a cherry filling: Trader Joe's, Pillsbury, Oronoque Orchard's, Wholly Wholesome, and Mrs. Smith. The winner, well, it wasn't even close.
We tested 10 brands of semisweet chocolate chips. They ranged from widely available ones like Toll House and Hershey's to the more hard-to-come-by and pricey Scharffen Berger and Barry Callebaut. Find out which ones are best for baking.
[Photograph: Robyn Lee] No pancakes, no sausages, no bacon, no cereal—JUST ICE CREAM, BABY. According to the foremost authority on International Ice Cream for Breakfast Day, there are only three rules for celebrating this most joyous holiday: 1. Eat ice...
Since nobody wants to receive a box full of crumbs (well, it's probably better than coal, but still) follow these tips for shipping baked goodies.More
Photo composite by Clay Gordon Celebrating our nation's independence with chocolate? Now that's a revolutionary idea. And, no, I'm not talking about a totally new form of chocolate or a new chocolate flavor, or even about the possibilities that...
Dads deserve chocolate too! When you think about the holidays where gifting chocolate is popular, Father's Day does not immediately come to mind. There's Halloween and Easter, of course, and Christmas—the biggest holiday for gifting chocolate there is. And...
This is a true story: when I was about five years old, I asked my mother how Moses and his friends had time to stop in the middle of the desert to dip their matzo in chocolate. Turns out...