This was my fifth 12 months attending the Meals & Wine Traditional in Aspen, and whereas it’s at all times an unimaginable supply of inspiration, recent mountain air, and some too many glasses of wine, this 12 months held a very significant bucket-list second: getting an training in baking from the legend herself, Martha Stewart. I attended the life-style guru’s “Fruit Desserts” panel (additionally the title of Stewart’s upcoming cookbook—her 99th!), the place I furiously jotted notes whereas cracking up at her depraved humorousness. Because you couldn’t all be on the Traditional with me (although should you ever get the prospect to go, I extremely advocate it), I assumed I’d share a few of her finest kitchen hacks proper right here!
Learn on for seven genius baking ideas I discovered from Martha Stewart at this 12 months’s Meals & Wine Traditional in Aspen.
1. The quickest strategy to make pie crust? The meals processor.
The truth that your meals processor can produce superbly flaky pie crust is simply another excuse to understand the magic of this versatile kitchen device. To show its energy, Stewart really held a contest in the course of the session to pit handmade dough in opposition to processed pastry—the latter received the job performed 3 times sooner each time.
One key tip for time-saving bakers: pulse, don’t course of. Pulsing is way gentler, and most carefully mimics the method of constructing the dough by hand. After mixing, divide the dough into smaller parts and smear every with the heel of your hand to assist distribute the fats (an typically ignored advice made by Epicurious). Wrap it up tightly and let the dough refrigerate for no less than half-hour.
2. Earlier than you bake, toss your fruit with lemon juice.
The advantages are twofold: the lemon juice provides taste and prevents fruits like apples, pears, and stone fruit from discoloring within the baking course of.
3. A cook dinner’s finest good friend? Bar cloths.
You should buy an enormous pack of bar cloths to have available and at all times hold just a few damp ones folded on the counter subsequent to you for simple cleanup—a much more sustainable technique than endlessly rolling out paper towels.
4. The one-ingredient glaze that attire up any dessert.
Heat a half cup of preserves in a pot on the range, then brush the glaze onto your fruit or pastry simply earlier than serving for further lush desserts. Contemplate pairing an apricot glaze with apple tarts, or strive raspberry with a plum crostata.
5. Edit your pantry.
If it’s been some time because you’ve final baked, give your pantry a go to and toss something that’s over the hill. Simple throwaways are leavening brokers (baking powder, baking soda) which can be over a 12 months previous, in addition to spices that aren’t as aromatic as they need to be. For those who’re actually trying to purge your pantry and make it really feel organized, think about tossing out any unused pantry staples, like opened jars of nuts that individuals have already filtered their favorites out of. Even peanut butter can go dangerous if unused after about three months. Utilizing recent elements at all times elevates your baking.
6. The artwork of scraping is a game-changer.
Significantly, don’t skimp on scraping. For those who’ve ever baked a batch of cookies with just a few oddballs, poor scraping might be guilty. Severe Eats stresses the significance of scraping as a part of the “creaming course of,” the place elements are aerated (folded collectively as an alternative of blended) to make a dough that’s mild, fluffy, and constant. Scrape the bowl with a superb rubber spatula throughout the whole mixing course of to make sure the dough is completely homogenized.
7. Flip your grater.
When zesting citrus, I at all times held my microplane beneath the fruit in order that the zest would go fall proper into my bowl, however I used to be stunned to see Stewart holding hers reversed! Holding the microplane with the blade down and the lemon beneath, she confirmed the viewers how the internal a part of the microplane collects all of the zest so that you add to the dessert. Simply watch out to not peel too deep—the white pith beneath the pores and skin has a bitter style.
*A Bonus Martha Stewart Tip—The Shocking Secret to Fluffy Scrambled Eggs
This isn’t baking-related, however I needed to share this scrambled egg hack as a result of my thoughts was blown. Stewart claims that the perfect, fluffiest scrambled eggs are made in a… (await it) cappuccino milk frother! She instructed us to simply pour your calmly crushed eggs into the frother, flip it on, and 90 seconds later you’ve received completely fluffy scrambled eggs. (Apparently, it actually does the trick!)
Have you ever ever tried this? In that case, depart a remark and let me know if it labored for you. You’ll be able to guess I’ll be attempting it at house, though I really feel like I must get a backup frother to check it—the thought of scrambled egg residue in my morning espresso makes my abdomen flip.