French meringue is one of the most simple, yet mysterious elements in the world of pastry. It consists of only four ingredients; egg whites, sugar, acid, and salt. These ingredients alone may seem unremarkable, but when combined together with the most critical element, forceful whipping, they become a marvel of chemistry and confection.
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Sometimes big flavor comes in small, tree-ripened packages. Take macerated fruit, the only case I know where a single berry or slice of fruit can end up tasting spicy, zesty, smoky and sweet all at once. And all thanks to an easy, set-and-forget technique.
Somewhere between sorbet and a sno-cone, a granita is the perfect refreshment when you're hot, cranky, and looking for an excuse to stick your face in the freezer every 30 minutes. This slideshow will teach you how to make your own granita by stirring some simple syrup into basically anything.
If you've made whipped cream yourself, you've likely been the proud recipient of incredulous admiration: "You make your own whipped cream?!" Maybe you've secretly smiled at yourself and thought, "If only they knew how super-easy it is..." Even if you haven't made it yourself, you probably know how good homemade whipped cream tastes. Entirely different than the canned stuff, it tastes better, looks prettier, has no additives, and you don't end up with another can to throw in the garbage.
Fudge isn't everyone's favorite thing. In fact, plenty of candy snobs wrinkle their noses at it. Admittedly, I can't think of the last time I had fudge that wasn't a little dried-out and sad. But give fudge a chance: it's easy to make, the ingredients are inexpensive, and making it at home gives you the freedom to tweak the recipe and add whatever you want to it (I like mine with toasty walnuts and a good dose of salt).
I've recovered from early pie-making traumas to make crusts that are both flaky and tender. For me, the key was in the technique—working quickly with cold ingredients, keeping some of the fat in little solid chunks, giving the dough a good rest in the fridge, and handling the dough gently. Maybe it sounds like a long list of things to keep in mind, but I promise it's not complicated. Check out the step-by-step slideshow so you can become a crust-making pro too.
Ahh, icing and cake. Few foods bring about more childlike joy. And yet, trying to bring these two together without a little know-how can make you feel like a five-year-old with two left hands. Here are a few pointers to make the next go-round less messy.
Is your ice cream turning out less than silky smooth? Your pudding looking curdled? And your spaghetti carbonara—is it a bit lumpy? Your problem might be in the tempering. Mine was.
Ganache is the standard filling for bonbons and is widely used in all pastry, yet many find it intimidating to make at home. Ganache is actually quite simple to prepare, and can be used in a wide variety of delicious desserts. Here's a step-by-step visual guide to help you along the way.
This slideshow will take you through the process of achieving perfectly beaten egg whites, from the whole egg to stiff peaks.
I did my best with our family's old hand mixer but always wondered, do they really mean light and fluffy? How could a stick of butter and some sugar ever be anything but thick and heavy?
[Flickr: L. Marie] For a unique ice cream treat, Evil Mad Scientist shows you how to make ice cream gyoza, ice cream-stuffed cookie dough pouches formed in a gyoza press, with chocolate sauce on the side. I think I'd...
From scoochmaroo on Instructables Drumsticks are pretty tasty straight from the supermarket freezer, but they'd be even better if you made them yourself. Instructables has a tutorial on how to make them at home. Just get ice cream cones,...
It's tougher than it looks. Open, flip over, push down on bottom, and finally, enjoy. Usually ice cream doesn't make people think this hard, but I actually had to watch a how-to video to understand the proper eating process...
How-to site Instructables has a solution for the next time you're hankering for mini shots of ice cream at a fast food joint or coffee shop. All you'll need: single serving creamer cups, salt, sugar, ice water, and a...