Marinating Chicken In Dairy: A Complete Guide

The picture of raw chicken floating away in your fridge for hours in a container filled with yogurt, milk or buttermilk may be sight difficult to imagine for the uninitiated. Some may even find it a bit gross. However, we promise that once you learn a little bit more about this technique and give its tender, juicy results a go, you will too become a full convert who will never grill a dry chicken breast ever again.

Marinating meat in dairy is not a novelty. Humans have been using yogurt and milk to tenderize meat Yogurt Your Meats: It’s Part Science, Part Spiritual | TASTE for hundreds of years and this technique still remains one of the best and easiest ways to infuse it with flavor. Cuisines such as those from Iran, India, Lebanon, Turkey and Italy are rife with dishes in which meats such as chicken, lamb or pork are soaked in yogurt or cooked in milk.

The Ninja Professional: An Excellent Upgrade to Your Clunky Blender

As more people hop on the smoothie bandwagon, the blender wars have heated up and customers are no longer content with the low-quality versions usually found at big-box stores that cannot stand up even to the easiest jobs.

Furthermore, Amazon reviews will make sure to single out any contenders that make unpleasant gritty protein shakes or leave chunky pieces of ice in smoothies. Since we are using our blenders more than ever, we want them to do their job!

Thus, here is the review for the Ninja Professional, an excellent upgrade to your clunky blender.

The Ninja Professional 

Ninja 1

The Ninja, with its combination of innovative design and sturdy construction aims to be an upgrade to the clunky blenders of the past.

So, if you are used to struggling with cheap box-store models that are difficult to clean, get pieces of food stuck in between their blades and that cannot seem to blend even the softest foods, then you will notice a huge difference with a Ninja.

Ninja promises to literally pulverize through large quantities of ice and frozen fruit with sharp stainless steel blades powered by a mighty 1100-watt motor that will ensure a smooth blend every time.

This newer model also comes with two super convenient Nutri Ninja cups with to-go lids that are perfect for making single-serving smoothies, blending sauces and marinades and will make cleanup even more hassle free by eliminating the need to use the larger pitcher every time and allowing you to drink from the same cup in which you blended your smoothie. 

If you are currently researching blenders you will notice plenty of reviews comparing Ninjas to Vitamix blenders that will make you question whether a Ninja will work fine for you or if you should just go ahead and shell out $400 for a fancy Vitamix.

But we believe that these comparisons are a a bit unfair as Vitamix is a professional kitchen gadget made with the needs of chefs and commercial establishments in mind, while the Ninja - although advertised with the word “professional” in the name - was designed mostly with morning smoothies and Sunday afternoon margaritas in mind.

While most people who upgrade to Vitamix never come back to a Ninja, the same can be said for people who upgrade to Ninjas from conventional blenders.

We like to think of the Ninja as a budget-friendly alternative to more expensive professional blenders and a powerful step up from classic kitchen models.


A quick look at the Ninja’s Basic Specs

Ninja small to go cup blending
  • 3 Blending Speeds
  • Pulse Setting
  • Single Serve Option
  • 1100-watt Motor
  • 3x Total Crushing Blades
  • 1x Nutri Ninja Blades
  • 72 oz Pitcher
  • 2x 16 oz Nutri Ninja Cups
  • Dishwasher Safe
  • 1 Year Warranty

Ninja's Highlights

Here are the features that set the Ninja apart from other run-of-the-mill blenders:

The Blades

The most important part about the Ninja is that it comes with two sets of super sharp and strong stainless steel blades: one Total Crushing system that will fit the large pitcher and a smaller single set of blades for the Nutri Ninja Cups. The Total Crushing blade features a set of three stacked blade sets that will easily cut through large amounts of ice and frozen fruit and ensure even blends, while the Nutri Ninja blades will fit the to-go cups are better suited for smaller portions.

Motor

A powerful 1100-watt motor that can stand up to tough jobs like crushing ice and blending frozen fruit.

Extra Large Carafe 

Fits 72oz of liquids, making it one of the largest pitchers of any blender in the market. The large size makes it great for blending multiple servings of smoothies and perfect for entertaining and making large batches of drinks.

Single Serve Setting 

Perfect for blending smaller, single-serving portions of smoothies and shakes with an easy and quick set-up.

Nutri Ninja Cups with To Go Lids 

Easy and convenient: using the same cups for drinking as for blending will cut down on cleanup and make drinking your smoothies on the go or storing them in your fridge for later even easier.

Pitcher Lid 

Features a locking system that prevents the blender from working without it. A small opening for pouring out liquids makes using easy and mess-free.

Dishwasher Safe Parts 

Makes cleanup quick, easy and thorough.

What users have to say about the ninja Professional

Pros

  •  Excellent at crushing ice and frozen fruit 
  • Large pitcher allows for blending in bulk
  • Sturdy, no slip base prevents vibration and “walking”
  • Blade design moves ingredients around well enough that they don’t get stuck in between them and there is rarely a need to scrape the sides in order to mix everything
  • Makes smooth and frothy drinks
  • To-go cups reduce the amount of items to clean up and make using the blender even easier

Cons

  • Difficult to clean by hand because of the sharp blades, square design of the carafe and its large size
  • Loud
  • Blades will lose sharpness over time and the overall especially when you use it a lot for frozen fruit or ice
  • Not good for blending things in very small amounts
  • It doesn’t have a vent, so ingredients must be cooled off before being processed to avoid pressure-buildup
  • Replacement parts can be expensive

Which Foods is the Ninja good for?

  • Smoothies
  • Crushing Ice
  • Sauces and Marinades
  • Frozen Drinks
  • Nut Butters
  • Hot Ingredients
  • Blending Leafy Vegetables

Ninja 3

Conclusion

The Ninja brings a myriad of improvements that are well worth the money for just a small price difference from other blenders. 

While it is not a commercial-grade quality product, it is definitely a major improvement from big-box models.

Therefore, if what you are looking to do is up your smoothie and frozen drink game and have a machine that is capable of handling tougher jobs that a regular blender, you don’t need to shell out for a more expensive brand as the Ninja will work perfectly in your kitchen.

Your Bread Machine Buying Guide

Bread: it’s truly a labor of love. There’s the mixing, the kneading, the resting, the kneading again, the slapping, the shaping and rolling and then some more resting again. It’s definitely a lot of work for which most people don’t have the time for and the reason why most of us purchase bread that is already made.

However, as Americans become ever more conscious of the ingredients in their food and start following alternative eating habits such as low-carb or gluten free, interest in homemade bread has started to grow.

This has brought about the comeback of bread machines, an expensive niche product when they first came out in the 90’s that has now become a highly sought-after kitchen appliance.

Quick Bread Machine Comparison

**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews.


Why you should be making your own bread

breads

The biggest advantage to making your own bread is the control that you get over what goes in it. Most store-bought bread is a processed product that is quite far from being real bread and is laden with additives to preserve texture, shape, color and flavor and stop mold growth. 

In addition, it’s normally made with low quality flour or one that has a low nutritional profile such as the bleached white variety. Even breads that claim to be “whole wheat” are mostly white flour with a small amount of whole wheat flour mixed in and plenty of sugar courtesy of the addition of corn syrup, rice syrup or molasses. 

The second most important advantage is all the time and money that it will save you. When scaled down to price-per-serving, making your own bread is much more affordable than buying it at the store.

The initial purchase of the necessary ingredients you’ll need plus the bread machine will definitely represent more money up front. However, you will quickly recoup your investment over time, especially considering the fact that you will be making a more high quality product that would also cost a lot more when purchasing prepared.

Last but not least is the satisfaction you get to feel after throwing all your ingredients into a machine, go do something else - maybe even go to work - and come back to a delicious, warm loaf of bread you can actually feel good about eating the next day for breakfast. 


WHY USE A BREAD MACHINE

bread with jam

Bread machines take much of the guesswork - and actual work- from making bread. They take care of the mixing, kneading and baking parts of the process with easy-to-follow instructions and minimal intervention from the user.

Bread makers are not only useful for making bread loaves from start to finish but also for making dough that you can use for pizza crust or other types of bread such as focaccia.

Most machines have a dough setting that will essentially knead the dough for you. All you need to do once it’s finished is rest it and then pop it into your oven for low-effort homemade bread.


Beyond bread

dough

One quick Google search on bread makers will show you that they mostly make the types of bread loaves that are normally sliced and packed for sale at supermarkets. Although the bread made at home is of a higher quality and is made with better ingredients.

This doesn’t mean that you have to limit yourself to homemade white loaf bread. There are plenty of ingredients you can experiment with to create unique flavors and textures. You can try using oatmeal flour, making cinnamon-raisin loaves or baking Parmesan-rosemary bread that will take your lunchtime turkey sandwich from lunchbox staple to a crave-worthy concoction. 

More than producing loaf-style bread at home, we believe that the true value of a bread machine lies in the endless possibilities that their dough cycles offer.

In fact, many people own bread machines for the dough cycle alone and do not use them for baking at all. Dough cycles allow you to skip the labor intensive part of kneading dough for French bread, pizza crust, pretzels, dinner rolls, etc. and just rest it once it’s been processed for the amount of time your recipe requires before baking.

Many bread machines also include jam settings that will allow you to add jam to the repertoire of items you can make healthier versions of at home. 


Who benefits most from a bread machine

bread shop

Bread machines are a great kitchen gadget for those who want the satisfaction of making their own bread or dough for other baked goods but don’t have the time for it. Or for those who may have physical limitations that make it difficult to do it.

People who live in areas that are far from supermarkets or bakeries or in which finding specialty products can prove difficult, will find it extremely convenient to be able to make bread to their preference without having to drive an hour to the nearest store or settle for unhealthier options.

Likewise, those that are in places where it may be difficult to find healthy versions of foods that have been made unhealthy by mass production or fast food restaurants such as pizza, cakes, jams and other baked goods will reap plenty of benefits from being able to make better and more delicious varieties of these foods at home.

Bread makers are especially useful for people who have food allergies or restrictive diets and who often have trouble finding baked goods with ingredients that are safe for them to consume.

These machines not only allow people to control all ingredients that go into the finished product but also provide for a more affordable way to access things such as gluten-free breads and nut-free baked goods that can run expensive in many places.


bread Machine shopping guide

Bread machines are more popular and widely available than ever. Nearly every kitchen appliance brand has their own version of them and most machines share similar settings for different types of breads. 

They also have delay timers that are useful for programming the time at which you want your loaf to start baking. Still there are a couple of things that you keep in mind when shopping for one:

Size and Weight

Some bread machines can run quite heavy and large. Pay attention to how much counter or cabinet space you have to devote to your machine and check whether its weight is comfortable enough for you to lift it.

Kneading Settings

Kneading dough is a tough job so make sure that your machine’s paddles can stand up to the job, especially if you’re going to be using heavier dough such as gluten-free.

Heating

A machine with good heating settings will ensure an even bake and avoid heavy, dense loaves.

Removable Pan

A removable pan may be the thing that marks the difference on whether you use your machine or let it waste away in a corner as it will make cleanup much easier.

Fruit and Nut Dispenser

This feature is especially useful if you plan on making sweet breads such as banana loaves or just add nuts to your savory breads as it will add these ingredients at the right time without you having to add them yourself.

Top 5 Best bread machines

1. Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus Breadmaker

Zojirushi Home Bakery Virtuoso Plus Breadmaker

A long-time gold standard, this Japanese-made machine promises perfectly baked loaves every time thanks to a combination of dual kneading blades that knead dough to perfection and dual heaters located both in the bottom and in the lid to bake it evenly.

The Virtuoso has a multitude of settings including vegan, sourdough and gluten-free and three different choices for crust: light, medium and dark. In addition, kneading, rising and baking times are customizable for further experimentation.

Users appreciate its good kneading action, which makes it a great machine for those who are interested in baking breads that have tougher dough such as low-carb and gluten-free.

Although it comes with a hefty price tag, we definitely consider it a sound investment if you’re serious about making your own bread.

Pros

  • 14 Pre-programmed settings
  • 3 memory settings
  • 13-hour delay timer
  • Rapid courses 
  • Custom courses
  • Dual kneading blades 
  • Dual heaters
  • Easy-to-read LCD display 
  • Large viewing window
  • Jam, cake, and dough courses
  • Gluten-free cycle
  • Non-stick bread pan

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Large - takes a lot of counter space
  • Push buttons are reported to wear out with time

2. Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker

Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker

If you’re interested in other possibilities that having a bread machine at home can open for you, the Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker is a great option.

Aside from offering options for baking loaves from 1 pound to 2 1/2 pounds, this bread maker is also great for making dough for pizza crust, focaccia, pasta dough and even jam.

It comes with a fruit and nut dispenser that makes it easier to automatically add flavor and nutrition to your breads and a collapsible paddle that reduces the hole in the bottom of the loaf that so many other bread machines leave. 

Pros

  • 13 Pre-programmed settings
  • 3 Crust color options
  • 9 Custom settings
  • Gluten-free cycle
  • Easy-to-read LCD display
  • Pause button
  • Automatic fruit and nut dispenser
  • Non-stick bread pan
  • Makes up to 2.5lbs loaves

Cons

  • Complaints with the Collapsible Bread Paddle
  • Expensive
  • Size and weight

3. Cuisinart CBK-200 2-lb Convection Bread Maker

Cuisinart CBK-200 2-Lb Convection Bread Maker

The Cuisinart Convection Bread maker has a couple of features aimed at giving you a wonderful loaf of bread.

Its convection feature circulates hot air  to allow for even baking and better color though 16 different cycle options that include low-carb and gluten free options.

The artisan option allows dough several cycles of rising and cooling which create  a better texture on your bread and crunchier crusts.

Pros

  • 16 Pre-programmed settings
  • 3 Crust colors
  • Gluten-free cycle
  • Convection feature
  • 15-minute Pause
  • 12-Hour-Delay Start
  • Removable Lid
  • Handles on the sides of the machine
  • Interruption recovery

Cons

  • Size and weight
  • The LED back screen is not back-lit
  • The dark crust may be too dark

4. Oster Bread Maker

Oster Bread Maker

This compact, budget-friendly option is perfect for those who have small counter space or smaller families or who just aren’t sure whether they will be using their bread machine often enough to justify a larger investment.

Although it’s small, the Oster Bread Maker packs over 12 different bread settings and three crust levels plus the same 13-hour delay timer that can be found in more expensive models.

It features an especially useful Expressbake cycle which will produce a 2 pound loaf in an hour.

Pros

  • 3 Crust settings
  • 13-hour delay timer
  • Warm setting
  • Expressbake cycle
  • Compact size and lightweight
  • Affordable
  • User-friendly
  • Non-stick pan
  • Good value for the money

Cons

  • Only 9 pre-programmed settings
  • No gluten-free setting
  • Loud beeping signal for adding ingredients can’t be silenced

5. Hamilton Beach Bread Maker

Hamilton Beach Bread Maker

Another budget and small space-friendly option, this bread machine is perfect for first-time users.

It’s easy to operate and even easier to clean up with a removable dishwasher safe, non-stick pan and paddles.

It features 12 different bread settings and includes a very useful manual with detailed instructions and a repertoire of recipes using Bob’s Red Mill products.

Pros

  • 12 Pre-programmed settings
  • 3 Crust settings
  • Gluten-free cycle
  • Delay timer
  • Compact size
  • Affordable
  • Non-stick pan
  • 2 Kneading paddles
  • Good value for the money

Cons

  • Bit noisy when mixing and kneading
  • The non-slip feet aren’t non-slip enough
  • Knead paddle comes loose 

Conclusion

There is quite a lot of that could be included in a review on bread machines. However, knowing all of the above should give you the ability to choose the best one for you and your family. While determining which one is best could depend on your specific circumstances, all of the bread makers mentioned above come highly recommended.

While it could take some time to figure out which bread machine is the best for you and your family, this should be worth it over time. Therefore, being patient before making your decision could be the best approach.

3-Day Vegetarian Beach Vacation Meal Plan

As part of our beach vacation meal plan series, we bring you this vegetarian-friendly version to help you with figuring out how to organize your trip. Just like our omnivore versions, this one includes a combination of make-ahead meals with easy recipes you can whip out in less than 30 minutes each and plenty of prepared foods to tie you in for snacks and sides. Breakfasts are protein-heavy to give you energy for the day and dinners are easy and mostly on the grill for speedy cooking and lots of flavor.

hummus

We first outline the foods you will be bringing and/or preparing in advance and then provide you with a handy guide organizing all of them into three-day meal plan:

Prepared Foods:

  1. Bread
  2. Pita bread
  3. Pita Chips
  4. Hummus
  5. Cheese
  6. Nuts
  7. Crudités for hummus
veggie frittata

Make-ahead dishes:

  1. Red Pepper and Feta Frittata:

  2. Quick and flavorful with sweet red pepper and briny feta cheese.
    Vegetable Frittata Recipe | MyRecipes

  3. Black Bean Enchiladas:

  4. Filling, warm and restoring with plenty of protein to energize you for the next day.
    Vegetarian Black Bean Enchiladas - A Cedar Spoon

  1. Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches with Herbed Ricotta:

  2. Grill the vegetables and prepare the herbed ricotta in advance and then assemble before throwing into your lunchbox.
    Grilled Vegetable Sandwich with Herbed Ricotta | foodiecrush

bruschetta

Meals to prepare at the beach house:

  1. Guacamole:

  2. An easy crowd favorite.
    Guacamole Recipe - Allrecipes.com | Allrecipes

  1. Lemon and Vegetable Risotto:

  2. A bit labor intensive but we guarantee that the payoff will be amazing.
    Summer Lemon-Vegetable Risotto Recipe | MyRecipes

  1. Bruschetta:

  2. Simple and bursting with in-season tomatoes.
    Tomato Basil Bruschetta with Balsamic Drizzle Recipe - Cookie and Kate

  1. Mezze platter:

  2. One of the easiest meals ever: just put all of your hummus, bread, crudités, chips and other nibbles together in small plates and dig in
    How to make an easy vegetarian mezze platter – Easy Cheesy Vegetarian

plan ahead

Day 1:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs any style with Toast

Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches

Hummus with Pita Chips and Crudités

Black Bean Enchiladas and Guacamole

Day 2:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Oatmeal, Fruit and Toast

Frittata, Bread and Cheese

Nuts and Fruits

Lemon Vegetable Risotto and Bruschetta

Day 3:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs any style with Toast and Fruit

Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches

Hummus and Crudités

Mezze Platter

7-Day Easy Recipe Beach Vacation Meal Plan

Many of us subscribe to a no-cook rule while on vacation. After all, what’s the point of going through all the motions of getting there only to end up tied to the kitchen with a sink full of dishes just like every other day at home? Or maybe you’re hesitant because you’re just not a great cook and are secretly afraid of ruining your family’s vacation with overcooked burgers.

But just because you don’t feel like doing the kitchen work or are just not very good at cooking, it doesn’t mean that you need to spend your beach vacation surviving on frozen hot dogs, burgers and pizza with some supermarket brownies on the side or wasting a considerable chunk of each evening waiting for a table at the only restaurant in town where you’ll wind up blowing double the money you were originally planning on spending for that trip.

To help you out in putting delicious food on your table that will make your vacation even more memorable, we searched around for a set of easy recipes with minimal ingredients and barely any cooking time at all. Some only require the assembly of good quality ingredients into a sandwich or appetizer spread while others are so good on their own that all you have to do is throw them on the grill and wait for them to brown.

cheese plate

We first outline the foods you will be bringing and/or preparing in advance and then provide you with a handy guide organizing all of them into a 7-day meal plan:

Prepared Foods:

  1. Deli chickpea salad
  2. Cheese
  3. Yogurt
  4. Granola
  5. Bread
  6. Cold cuts
  7. Smoked salmon
  8. Hummus
  9. Crudités 
  10. Pita bread
  11. Pita chips
  12. Mixed nuts
  13. Choice of dessert
shrimp pasta

Foods to prepare at the beach house:

  1. Shrimp Pasta:
  2. Light and easy with only five ingredients. 

    Easy Shrimp Pappardelle (5 ingredients!) - Cooking for Keeps

  3. Prosciutto and arugula sandwich:
  4. Simple and luxurious combination of sweet, peppery and salty.

    Prosciutto, Arugula and Balsamic Sandwich

  5. Mezze Platter:
  6. The easiest dinner ever: just put together all the cheese, olives, cold cuts hummus and little nibbles you brought along with plenty of bread and good olive oil.

    Greek meze platter (How to make it at home)

  7. Avocado Toast with Smoked Salmon:
  8. It doesn’t get any better than creamy avocado and smoked, fatty salmon on top of some crusty bread.

    Smoked Salmon Toast Recipe with Avocado - olivemagazine

  9. Grilled Steak:
  10. Just salt, pepper and throw on a hot grill.

    Easy Grilled Steak Recipe - Chowhound

  11. Avocado Salad:
  12. Fresh and easy. Cut, chop and toss together.

    3 Ingredient Avocado Salad - iFOODreal - Healthy Family Recipes

  13. Grilled Burgers:
  14. Simple and flavorful crowd pleasers.

    Perfect Grilled Burgers Recipe | MyRecipes

snack tray

Day 1:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs Any Style and 

Toast

Ham and Cheese Baguette

Hummus and Crudités

Grilled Steak and 

Avocado Salad

Day 2:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Yogurt with Granola and Fruit

Deli Chickpea Salad Pita Sandwiches

Cold Cuts and

Cheese

Eat Out

Day 3:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs any style and Fruit

Prosciutto and Aragula Sandwich 

Pita Chips and Hummus 

Mezze Platter

Day 4:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs any style and Fruit

Deli Chickpea Salad Pita Sandwich 

Nuts and Fruits

Shrimp Pasta and Bread

Day 5:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Yogurt with Granola and Fruit

Avocado Toast and Smoked Salmon

Mixed Nuts, Cheese and Fruits

Eat Out

Day 6:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Eggs any style

Ham and Cheese Baguette

Hummus and Crudités

Grilled Burgers

Day 7:

Breakfast

Lunch

Snack

Dinner

Yogurt with Fruit and Granola

Avocado Toast and Smoked Salmon

Cheese and Mixed Nuts 

Eat Out

Best Springform Pan Reviews (2020): The Greatest For Cheesecakes & More

Making the perfect cheesecake at home is not complete without a springform pan. It is a baking equipment that enables you to create mess-free and hassle-free cheesecakes. You can achieve the classic circular shape of a cheesecake with the help of this baking tool.

Professional bakers are not the only ones who can use this baking staple. Home bakers can also take advantage of its many benefits. If you like cheesecakes and you fancy making one at home, it would make sense to have one or two reliable springform pans so you can whip up your favorite kind of cake any time.

Quick Comparison: Top Springform Pans 2019

Product Quality Price Our Rating

Nordic Ware Leakproof Springform Pan

A+ $  

Farberware Nonstick Bakeware 9-Inch Round Springform Pan

A+ $$  

USA Pan Bakeware Springform Pan

A- $$$  

Boxiki Kitchen Non-Stick Springform Pan

B+ $$  

Wilton Excelle Elite 9-Inch Springform Pan

B $  

**Below, you’ll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

What is a Springform Pan?

via https://www.tablespoon.com/

Any baker will find the springform pan indispensable in their baking repertoire. It is a kind of bakeware with separated sides. There is a lock that secures the sides together and keep them secured to the base. When you remove that lock, you can easily remove the sides so that the cake you baked will easily slide out. It keeps the shape of the cheesecake intact.

These pans come in different shapes and sizes such as circle, rectangle, square and heart shapes. Most bakers opt for the circular ones as this is the traditional shape of cakes. You can get them in basic 9-inch sizes but there are also smaller or bigger ones these days.

Springform pans are often made using anodized aluminum but there are also those products made from heavy gauge steel and even glass. The aluminum and steel ones have a layer of non-stick coating as well as waterproofing at the base area to prevent leakage. Some springform pans also come with waffled bottoms.

Choosing the Best Springform Pan for Cheesecake Lovers

Not all springform pans have the same quality and features. That said, you would want to pay attention to what you are buying so you can choose one that will suit your cheesecake-making preferences better. Here are some factors to consider:

Light and Dark-colored Pans

via https://www.allrecipes.com/

It is a common knowledge that dark colors are efficient in absorbing heat. Meanwhile, light colors have reflective properties. They fend off the heat, which causes longer baking time. If you want to bake the cake with utmost precision, light pans are the ideal choice. But for quicker and fully-cooked output, you should get dark-colored pans.

Non-stick Surfaces

via https://www.tablespoon.com/

It’s important for the springform pan you are buying to have non-stick properties. This feature prevents the food from sticking to the pan. Take note that cheesecakes are soft and fragile. Once they stick to the pan, it will be difficult to remove them without ruining their shape.

Construction

via https://www.allrecipes.com/

There are two types of springform pans that exist in the market today: the metal and glass pans. The metal pans are easier to use just because they are more resistant to damages. Glass pans could be susceptible to breakage and will require more careful handling.

You can also find silicone springform pans today. A lot of bakers prefer using this kind of material because it is pliable, and you get more consistent results. It also doesn’t damage the end result as the baked good slides out easily. These pans are also easier to store because they can be compacted.

The Best Springform Pans: Top 5 Reviews

  • Farberware NonstickBakeware 9-Inch Round Springform Pan (Heat Resistant)
  • Nordic Ware Leakproof Springform Pan (For Quick Baking)
  • USA Pan Bakeware Springform Pan (Leak-Proof)
  • Boxiki Kitchen Non-Stick Springform Pan (Dishwasher-Safe)
  • Wilton Excelle Elite 9-Inch Springform Pan (Heavy Duty)

I checked out the different springform pans out there and looked for those with the best prices and the highest ratings. Here are the best ones you can get if you want to make cheesecakes at home:

1. Farberware Nonstick Bakeware 9-Inch Round Springform Pan

Farberware 9-inch round

Farberware Nonstick Bakeware Springform Pan is one of the finest springform pans that you can get today. From its structure down to the results that it can give, this pan does not lack a thing. It is a food-safe baking ware that is capable of long-lasting performance without warping or rusting.

The non-stick coating of the Farberware Springform Pan ensures that your cheesecakes and pies will remain beautiful and presentable throughout the baking process. It can turn the dish into perfectly-balanced and browned desserts. It can release the cake smoothly and free from any blemishes.

Getting a pan that can endure temperatures is not easy. But during our research, we discovered that Farberware Nonstick Bakeware 9-Inch Round Springform Pan is the best springform pan that can endure high temperatures.​

The entire springform pan has high heat resistance. It can endure temperatures that as high as 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Even if things get scorching hot, the structure of the pan won’t be altered and compromised. The size of the pan is also adequate enough to prepare large cheesecakes, tortes, and tarts.

Pros

  • checkHassle-free clean-up
  • checkEnables quick and compact storage
  • checkBakes equally; no hotspots can burn your ingredients
  • checkExtremely sturdy construction
  • checkRust and scratch resistant

Cons

  • Susceptible to minor leakages, especially if the ingredients are very runny
  • exclamation-triangleYou need to hand wash it to protect it from damages

2. Nordic Ware Leakproof Springform Pan

Nordic Ware

If you are going to use cheesecake mixture that is a bit more on the runny side, you might want to check out the Nordic Ware Springform Pan. It is a dark-colored pan that has a tried and tested reputation in preventing the ingredients from leaking out. It comes with tight seals that ensure that spills won’t happen, even if your ingredients are almost liquid-base.

Because of its dark color, the Nordic Ware is capable of quick baking. It improves the speed of your preparation, which is necessary if you are preparing a large batch of desserts. But don’t worry a thing here. This particular springform pan has a high-heat resistance. No warping will take place even if you’ll expose it scalding hot temperatures.

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The Nordic Ware Springform Pan also promotes even cooking. There are no uneven spots that cause overcooking or undercooking. The non-stick coating ensures quick and mess-free food release. The same feature also allows you to clean the pan easily. But take note: this pan is not dishwasher safe. You still have to manually hand-wash it with the use of mild detergents.

Pros

  • checkCapable of fast and equal baking results
  • checkClean and smooth release
  • checkRugged construction and features high-heat resistant
  • checkSeams have been closed to prevent spills
  • checkFeatures an ergonomic locking mechanism
  • checkHas a good seal, prevents ingredients from leaking out

Cons

  • The bottom of the pan is slightly elevated; it consumes a little space inside

3. USA Pan Bakeware Springform Pan

USA Pan

The reputation of the USA Pan Bakeware Springform Pan should not be whittled down. Many professional bakers acknowledge the performance of this pan in baking delicate desserts such as cheesecakes. It has useful features such as quick-release latch handles. Just by a simple flip, fragile desserts can be removed without inflicting damages.

This is one heavy-duty pan and customers who have tried using it can attest to how durable it is. It is crafted from aluminized steel so that it can serve you long and adequately. Of course, the material is food-safe. It doesn’t impart any taste to the ingredients. Furthermore, the non-stick coating improves the ease of cleaning and maintenance.

This springform pan has a fluted design on the inner surface of its base. It is an innovation that optimizes the airflow inside the pan while maximizing its physical strength. As a result, the structure of the pan becomes less susceptible to warping. Scratches and dents will not happen easily to the pan because of its solid construction and build.

Pros

  • checkAluminized steel design makes it one of the toughest springform pans today
  • checkNonstick coating is durable and is not susceptible to scratches
  • checkCakes and desserts can be released without fuss
  • checkThe base of the pan has been corrugated to add extra strength to the pan
  • checkCompact and food-safe construction
  • checkNot messy to use even when using runny ingredients
  • checkCan even fit in an Instant Pot
  • checkEven those with bakeries will find this pan reliable for heavy usage
  • checkHas a good weight

Cons

  • Some said the butter they used still leaked

4. Boxiki Kitchen Non-Stick Springform Pan

Boxiki Kitchen

Another professional grade springform pan that exists today is this unit from Boxiki Kitchen. It mainly boasts of a premium non-stick interior surface for a better release and clean-up. The food can be taken out from the pan without leaving crumbs behind. It is a good baking ware for a variety of soft ingredients and cakes.

However, the most notable feature of the Boxiki Kitchen Non-Stick Springform Pan is its silicone handles. These red-colored handles provide an easy-grip mechanism. They allow you to handle the pan easily and safely even inside the oven. Meanwhile, the tight sealing of this pan gives it a defense against leakages and spills.

The pan has a decent performance in spreading the heat equally. It can create burn-free and scratch-free cheesecakes all the time. It can be safe to be used in temperatures of up to 445 degrees Fahrenheit. And unlike other springform pans, this one is dishwasher safe. You can even store it in your freezer and refrigerator.

Pros

  • checkEqually distributes heat for even cooking results
  • checkFeatures ergonomic silicone handles for easier handling
  • checkPrevents messy spills from happening
  • checkCan be cleaned and maintained easily
  • checkDecent durability and ruggedness

Cons

  • The tray is not detachable

5. Wilton Excelle Elite 9-Inch Springform Pan

Wilton Excelle 9-inch

The ergonomics of the Wilton Excelle Elite Springform Pan is something that makes a cut above the rest. It has been on the market for quite a time already and pro bakers are still happy about it now. This 9-inch pan provides a superior non-stick baking surface. No mess and residues will be left out once you release the sides already.

 

Moreover, the heavy duty construction of the device is impressive. It is designed from a food-safe steel that has a black coating. It can rapidly heat up for quick and fuss-free baking. The heat resistance of this tool is top of the line, too. You can see that it won’t warp even if you expose it to temperatures that as high as 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

There are also extended handles that have been integrated into the pan. It allows you to safely lift the pan from the oven. Moreover, this item can be safely washed in the dishwasher. You don’t have to consume several minutes just to clean it. The pan can be collapsed completely for easier storage.

Pros

  • checkDishwasher safe springform pan
  • checkCan heat up quickly and evenly
  • checkResist warping and other damages that can be caused by heat
  • checkEngineered for sturdiness and durability
  • checkExtended handles ensure that you can lift the pan without getting scorched
  • checkEasy to store with its collapsible design

Cons

  • Runny ingredients still leak from the base of the pan

Final Verdict

The right springform pan is essential when it comes to baking the perfect cheesecake. If you ask me, you can’t go wrong with any of the above-mentioned products. If you are looking for something that is easy to clean and will last you for a long time, I recommend that you get the Boxiki Kitchen Non-Stick Springform Pan. It just trumps others when it comes to ease of clean-up as it is dishwasher-safe.

For more professional bakers or serious home bakers, get the Wilton Excelle Elite 9-Inch Springform Pan. It is ideal for heavier usage as it is resistant to warping. It can also withstand higher oven temperatures, so this can be your ally for all your baking needs.

If your particular cheesecake recipe is a bit on the runny side before baking, you should get the Nordic Ware Leakproof Springform Pan. Its sealing capacity is unparalleled. It truly does prevent your ingredients from getting out of the pan. No mess and no wasting of ingredients.

The same is true for the USA Pan Bakeware Springform Pan. It can be relied on for its leak-proof design, but it also doesn’t lag behind when it comes to durability. Additionally, the improved airflow design allows air to circulate so you can get the best cheesecake results.

For a starter springform pan, the Farberware Nonstick Bakeware won’t disappoint. It might not have all the bells and whistles, but it does perform well for its price.

Do check out my homepage to find more baking and kitchen tools and equipment to add to your home. You can get recommendations on products to buy and read reviews and buying tips for more confidence in buying.

5 Quiche Recipes for Easy Sunday Brunches at Home

Along with deviled eggs, fondue and cheese logs quiche has been relegated to the pantheon of old school foods to cringe at the same way we do when remembering the forest green velour pants we wore whilst eating them.

But with all the 70’s nostalgia going around these days, it’s only fair that we also give the decade’s cuisine a fair chance at some well-deserved comebacks and no other dish is a better candidate for this than quiche.

quiche

As it happens with any food that becomes ubiquitously popular, quiche has become, since it’s heyday on the American table four decades ago, one of the culinary world’s favorite punchlines.

It brings back bad memories of heavy, custard side dishes to holiday dinners and the frozen versions many of us are used to buying on a whim at the supermarket haven’t helped its reputation at all.

But we’re here to argue that quiche - the homemade kind - is pretty darn good. It’s the perfect multi-purpose food to make ahead and have around for breakfast, lunch and dinner and it works both as a main dish or as a side.

It’s also one of the best meals to feed our current brunch obsession as nothing says: “I had time to make breakfast today because it’s a weekend” better than baking your eggs into a pie.

And let’s not get started on how insta-ready those quiche slices will look with all of the colorful veggies you’ll put into them.

quiche

In order to bring the quiche back, we collected a list filled with updated versions that go way beyond the classic quiche Lorraine that you grew up eating and that include modern ingredients that our moms wouldn’t even have dreamed of using back in the 70’s.

  • Mexican Quiche With Flour-less Crust

https://healthynibblesandbits.com/mexican-quiche-with-oat-almond-crust/

  • Butternut Squash and Sage Quiche

Butternut Squash Quiche Recipe | Leite’s Culinaria

  • Mushroom and Ramp Spring Quiche

Loaded Vegetable Quiche Recipe (Vegetarian!) - Vegetarian Ventures

  • Kale and Feta Crustless Quiche

Kale and Feta Crustless Quiche | Eating Bird Food

  • Caramelized Onion and Prosciutto Quiche

Caramelized Onion and Prosciutto Quiche with Phyllo Crust | The Beach House Kitchen

Make the most out of spring produce with these delicious pasta recipes

After months of filling yourself with hearty foods to power through cold winter days, spring brings a welcome respite from subsisting on meat, heavy roots and squashes with lighter fare like peas, leafy greens, crispy asparagus and the most flavorful alliums of any season.

We’re excited for markets filled with fresh fava beans, garlic, spinach, ramps, leeks, watercress, radishes, endives, cherries, strawberries, artichokes, scallions and all the other incredible produce that the Spring season brings. This is the time of year when basil is at its peak flavor, avocados at their creamiest and chives at their most delicious.

There is no better vehicle for all these fresh herbs and veggies than a simple bowlful of pasta where their flavors are free to shine. It’s also the perfect thing to cook once it’s nice outside and you have no appetite for complicated recipes that will keep you inside in your kitchen for hours.  

Check out below our list of yummy pasta recipes that will have even the pickiest of eaters loving all of these nutritious ingredients.

  • Avocado Pasta Salad

Creamy Avocado Pasta Salad - NatashasKitchen.com

  • Pea and Asparagus Pasta

Spring Pea and Asparagus Pasta - Cookie and Kate

  • Orzo Salad with Chicken and Radishes

Orzo Salad with Chicken and Radishes Recipe | MyRecipes

  • Shrimp and Artichoke Pasta

Shrimp and Artichoke Pasta Recipe | SimplyRecipes.com

  • Martha’s One Pot Pasta

https://food52.com/recipes/30147-martha-stewart-s-one-pan-pasta

  • Pea Pesto Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Pea Pesto Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes | Minimalist Baker Recipes


Best recipes for your next beach house vacation

The last thing anyone wants to do while on vacation is cook and then have to deal with a messy kitchen after a fun day at the beach. You’re tired, you’re sunburned and you’d rather plop down on the couch to watch a movie with your family or sit outside to enjoy the warm summer night with a cool glass of Pinot Grigio in your hand. But keeping it simple doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice eating real food and live off canned tuna, hot dogs and hot pockets for a week. With the right ingredients and recipes at hand, you can create easy, healthy and delicious meals that will satisfy everyone and add some delicious memories to your vacation experience.

scrambled eggs with salmon and chives

Breakfast

Breakfast can go either way: long and leisurely or light and quick. We prefer to err on the side of the former and turn it into a special occasion as breakfast is a meal that we so often consume in a hurry - or not at all. Plus, you’re going to need the energy for those long days out in the sun.

  • Scrambled Eggs with Smoked Salmon and Chives

Scrambled Eggs with Smoked Salmon and Chives - Epicurious

  • Baked Berry Oatmeal

Baked Berry Oatmeal - Gather and Feast

  • Poached Eggs on Avocado Toast

Poached Eggs on Avocado Toast - Pinch of Yum

lobster roll

Lunch:

You will most likely have your lunch on the go while in the middle of a hike or in a nice blanket by the beach, so let’s keep it simple and portable:

  • Pasta Pesto and Peas

Pasta, Pesto, and Peas Recipe | Ina Garten | Food Network

  • Classic Lobster Rolls

Best Classic Lobster Rolls - How to Make Classic Lobster Rolls

  • Couscous Salad with Zucchini and Roasted Almonds

Couscous Salad with Zucchini and Roasted Almonds Recipe | Food & Wine

  • Caprese Skewers

Recipe: Tomato & Mozzarella Caprese Skewers | Kitchn

steak skewers

Dinner:

This is where the temptation to eat out strikes! You’ve been out all day and are hungry and tired. In order to make it easy for you, we’ve chosen a mix of meals you can prep in advance or whip up in your grill in just a couple of minutes:

  •  Ranch Grilled Chicken Sandwiches

Ranch Chicken Sandwiches Recipe | Ree Drummond | Food Network

  • Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp Scampi Recipe | Taste of Home

  • Baked Ziti

Baked Ziti Recipe | SimplyRecipes.com

  • Grilled Steak Skewers

Grilled Steak Kebabs

When is Dungeness Crab Season?

For many of us, there are few things that we look forward to in the winter months. Sure, Christmas is amazing and hot cocoa by the fireplace with a good book is one of life’s greatest comforts but the novelty of fresh blankets of snow starts wearing off right around mid-January when we get winter fatigue and start fantasizing of spring garden parties and summer beachside picnics. But there is one thing to look forward to in those freezing cold months and thats is peeling and cracking your way into some sweet, sweet Dungeness crab. Although Dungeness crab season runs from November through the beginning of April, the peak and absolute best time to have them is right around late December and early January. Check out what to serve with crab here.

crab

Dungeness crabs are native to the cold waters of the U.S. west coast and their habitat covers an area that goes from Alaska’s Aleutian Islands, past British Columbia, Washington State and Oregon and down into Southern California. They are prized for their large size and the sweet, mild flavor of their meat and have been considered a delicacy ever since the first Native Americans settled in those regions.

There are conflicting opinions regarding on where the best Dungeness crab is found. Since these crabs love cold water, some argue that the higher up you are along the west coast, the better the Dungeness crab will be. Washingtonians like to claim that they have the best ones since, after all, they were the ones who made them world famous but you don’t have to go all the way up to Washington state to enjoy delicious Dungeness crab. Both Mendocino and Sonoma counties in California have a bustling crabbing industry and Dungeness crab is a regular and sought-after staple in restaurants all over San Francisco and in nearby Napa Valley. Oregon, lying quietly in between California and Washington, is often forgotten but here is where most of the Dungeness crab in the U.S. is caught and where you are very likely to find plenty of under-the-radar hidden gems serving excellent renditions of it.

Lately, though, Dungeness crab season has been changing quite a bit with seasons becoming delayed or cut short on many occasions. The main causes for these problems have been events related to climate change and the warming of oceans. Crabs love cold habitats and the warming of the waters they live in affects their food sources and therefore their development. It’s happened before that, since the crabs did not have enough to eat, they were not yet be at their ideal size for when the season kicked off and so it had to be delayed. Changes in water temperature can also cause an opposite reaction where there will be a larger-than-usual bloom of toxic algae. The crabs will eat this toxic algae and the toxins that accumulate in their bodies will, in turn, make the crabs’ meat unsafe for human consumption and affect the length of the season. 

Since Dungeness crab season has become so affected in the past couple of years, we recommend you stay informed and do your research to be on the loop on what’s going on. You may have to forgo having them in your table around the holidays because the season has been put off and maybe even have to wait until the following season if they are not safe to eat during a particular one. Although it’s sad that this delicacy and staple of the American table has become so affected by climate change, this will hopefully makes us appreciate it even more when it’s in season and realize how important it its for us to take care of our planet.

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