We all have kitchen tips and short cuts that we use. I'd love to hear about them.
One of my favorite is using a PLASTIC knife (yes, like the one you get with 'fast' food) to cut brownies. I'm not kidding, they cut without sticking or destroying the shape of the brownie. I always keep one in the silverware drawer.
I have others, but want to hear yours!
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1) I often measure out the dry ingredients for cakes or brownies the day before, sift and ziplock-bag them. I can resift later if I want. Sometimes I even grease and flour the pans the day before too. Cuts down on the baking process, especially if I'm going to be entertaining and have other cooking chores to do.
2) I always measure out the flour, sugar, on a length of paper towel. After leveling the measuring cup, the spilled flour gets dumped back into the bag. Less cleanup later.
3) If I'm hosting a big meal, I might do the prep work in advance: washing and cutting up vegetables and sealing them, air-tight in a ziplock bag for example, or cooking, pureeing and refrigerating in a plastic storage container in advance until I can bake (I'm thinking of my sweet carrot souffle, which I make very often in the fall and winter as a side).
As much as I love hard boiled eggs, I hate peeling them to the same magnitude. Serious Eats was my last chance before I gave them up forever. This works so well that even the frshest eggs from Parsons backyard hens are easy to peel.
I first make a tiny prick that only punctures the air pocket in the wide end of the egg with a safety pin. Thumbtack with the little colorful plastic handle works too, but mine have disappeared. Then I steam them in my vegetable steamer. 12 minutes is the sweet spot for me. Solid, but tender whites with a creamy yolk. After draining them, I bang them around slightly to break the shell. Be gentle. They are very delicate at this phase. Don't ask. Then I dump them into an ice water bath for at least 15 minutes. The shells literally fall off. I'll never cook hard boiled eggs any other way.
I skipped the shell poking once and ended up with shells that cracked. What a mess.