Ask the Test Kitchen

Layered Gelatin Salad

When I make a layered gelatin salad, the layers slide off one another. What am I doing wrong? —C.H., Orient, South Dakota

Our Test Kitchen has found that this happens when a layer of…

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Leftover Potato Salad

I was wondering if leftover potato salad could be frozen to enjoy later. The recipe I have in mind is a molded salad made with lemon gelatin, prepared potato salad, green peppers and cucumbers.…

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Lemon Curd

I have a recipe for lemon cream cake that calls for lemon curd filling. What is lemon curd? I can't find it anywhere and no one seems to know what it is. Can you help me out? —I.W.,…

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Light Versus Dark Brown Sugar

What is the difference between light brown and dark brown sugar? Can they be used interchangeably? —W.S., Middle Grove, New York

Both types of brown sugar are a mixture of sugar and…

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Lined Cake Pan

I make a Brazil nut cake that calls for lining the pan with waxed paper. I grease the pan and then put in the paper. But the paper sticks to the nuts at the top edge of the pan, and I have a…

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Lumpy Sugar in Blueberry Pie

Sometimes when I bake a blueberry pie, the sugar does not dissolve but crystallizes into lumps throughout the pie. The pie has plenty of juice, so I don't understand why this happens. —D.D.,…

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Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes

My mom and I would like to know if we can make mashed potatoes ahead of time and keep them in a slow cooker until serving. —J.H., Quakertown, Pennsylvania

With the holidays just around…

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Mayonnaise Substitute

When a recipe calls for mayonnaise, there is sometimes an editor’s note saying that reduced-fat or fat-free mayonnaise may not be substituted. Can whipped salad dressing be substituted for…

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Measuring Shortening or Peanut Butter

I have a simple way to measure solid vegetable shortening and peanut butter. I found this method in a cookbook years ago: If you want to measure 1/2 cup shortening, fill a measuring cup with 1/2…

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Meringue Topping

Each time I make a pie with meringue topping, a clear liquid develops under the meringue that causes the crust to get soggy. What causes this and is there a solution? —A.E. Bossier City,…

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