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#1 Lemon

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 10:40 AM

Seeing as there are a few of us who like to bake and cook I thought we could set up a new thread to share our favourite recipes and any tips we might have. Also a place to ask for baking/cooking advice!

I am starting with a question. Why can't I get pastry right?
I can do the cream cheese pastry for quiches and savoury dishes but every time I try a sweet pastry it's a disaster! Any tips for me?

I don't have a food processor. Is that my problem?

#2 Angel_Elle

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:12 AM

For me I cheat and buy the biscuit base mix for cheesecakes - so quick and easy. I think their is also a pastry one as well but haven't yet tried it.
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#3 *Ms Jessica*

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:15 AM

I've never made pastry from scratch, sorry bluebug, I usually either buy it or make a cheesecake like base for sweet deserts.

Not a question but a few of my favourite recipes.

This biscuits are amazing and you can substitute the white choc and cranberry for pretty much anything. There's also no kneading or cutting involved, yay!

http://sallysbakinga...nberry-cookies/
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#4 Tigridia

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:07 PM

QUOTE(BlueBug @ Mar 14 2013, 11:40 AM) View Post



I am starting with a question. Why can't I get pastry right?
I can do the cream cheese pastry for quiches and savoury dishes but every time I try a sweet pastry it's a disaster! Any tips for me?

I don't have a food processor. Is that my problem?


Food processors make some pastries easier, but you can make pastry without them, it depends on the recipe.

I'm a bit hit and miss with pastry, sometimes I'm a star other times not so much, so take my advice with a grain of salt. Normally you need to control the temperature of your ingredients. Use really cold butter and cold water/milk. Also don't handle it too much as your hands heat up the pastry and it melts rather than working properly. High humidity also makes it harder to make pastry work properly. If you find a couple of recipes that work for you, stick with them and substitute into other recipes.

My tip for baking is you can freeze excess egg whites. I just label how many egg whites are in each bag and date them. You can then defrost them in batches and make meringues/pavlova or friands rather than wasting egg yolks. Pavlova works really well with defrosted egg white. You just need to defrost on the bench slowly to room temp....... you can't microwave to defrost!!

Does anyone have any tips for tempering chocolate? We were going to make some fondant filled chocolates for Easter. Hubby has tempered successfully a few times but it's been hit and miss. Any tips welcome.
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#5 Jaydee

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:41 PM

You can bake whole cobs of corn (husk on) in the oven at 180 degrees for half an hour and they'll be perfectly cooked.

1/2 cup hoisin sauce mixed with 2tbs soy sauce makes an amazing dipping sauce.

Wilton make a colourless vanilla essence which is handy for flavouring icing without colouring it. And they also make a butter essence that's handy for making butterbeer wink.gif

Adding maple syrup into pancake batter, or a balsamic reduction (at the end, once it's been taken off the heat) does amazing things.




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