Category Archive: Kitchen Tools and Tips

How to Prepare Dry Cured Country Ham: It’s All About Soaking!

Baked Country Ham studded with Cloves Beverly C. lost  her instructions from me about preparing a salt cured ham. Here’s how I do it – I follow Smithfield’s instructions for any salt cured ham, and here they are, with my notes added in parentheses and italics: When preparing an uncooked country ham, it must be …

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How to “Unstick” Frosting on Brownies and Cakes

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It happened to me today and I’ll be it’s happened to you. I covered my frosted brownies with plastic wrap and made sure the wrap did not touch the frosted brownies. Well sometime during the day the wrap fell onto the frosting and when I tried to gently pull if off – the frosting stuck …

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How to Choose the Best Cookware and the Most Useful Pan in the Kitchen

Cranberry cheese spread in Le Creuset baker

  Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Dutch oven/Stockpot   We’re going into the busy holiday season and I get more questions about cookware and cutlery than you’d believe.  Here’s a primer of sorts on cookware – in a future column we’ll chat about cutlery. Cut this column out and arm yourself with it when you …

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Vegan for Everybody – and Secrets to Optimizing a Vegan Diet

Vegan for Everybody
America's Test Kitchen

I just got this book – oh my gosh – America’s Test Kitchen did it again! The recipes are delicious and doable. I’m already putting the Mushroom Bolognese, Whole Wheat Pancakes (no eggs!)  and Roasted Chili Rubbed Butternut Squash with Ranch Dressing on my to do list for next week. This book has something for …

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Countdown to Thanksgiving: How long to Thaw? To Stuff or Not?

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A good rule of thumb for thawing turkey in the refrigerator is to allow 1 day for every 4 pounds. And I will tell you now I always stuff my turkey. I only baste once, when I put it in the oven at 325. If you keep opening the oven to baste, you’re losing temperature …

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“Snappies” possibly from Pogues – can you help?

From a reader: I’m looking for a recipe for something called “Snappies”. My husband remembers having them at his Grandmother’s. He describes it as a “very light cracker-like snack”. He says they purchased them downtown at possibly at Shillito’s but most likely Pogues”. I’ve never heard of them but he carries a fond memory for …

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Homemade Laundry Soap: Fun to Make Laundry Soap

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Homemade Laundry Soap Homemade Laundry Soap I purchased a tub of this at an herbal convention and read the ingredients. Heck, those are available at my local store, so I found a recipe for homemade laundry soap online and here it is. I’ve been making this for a couple of years, and really love it. …

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Cranberry Bonanza: Copycat Kroger celebration salad; Rita’s baked candied cranberries

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A reader wanted the recipe for that popular cranberry salad from Kroger. Here’s several yummy clones. Checking the label on Kroger’s cranberry celebration salad tells me gelatin is one of the ingredients, so I don’t know if it’s a jello type or just plain gelatin. The first ingredient on their label is cranberries. Cranberry celebration …

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Sodastream Review: What is Sodastream Soda Maker?

Sodastream Review - Kit

Sodastream Review: What is Sodastream Fountain Jet Soda Maker? What is the Sodastream? Make your own sparkling water and soda at home with the Sodastream Soda Maker. Ever since sparkling water became a staple at our house, we’ve been looking for a product like the Sodastream soda maker. Our passion for soda water was becoming …

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Stainless Steel Cookware

Stainless Steel Cookware is a Staple in Great Kitchens Summary: Stainless steel cookware comes in a variety of grades and varied quality. This range leads many to ask, “Can I use my stainless steel cookware in the oven? What other tips should I know to keep my stainless steel pans looking good?” Dear Rita: I …

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