Picture-Perfect Meals

Category: Prep School

Prep School

Prep School: How to Make Chocolate Bowls for Fabulous-Looking Desserts

You don’t have to be a pastry chef to turn out show-stopping desserts served in chocolate bowls. And, making them is easier than you might think. You just need a handful of small balloons, some chopped chocolate (white, dark or semi-sweet) that has been tempered (it’s a snap in the microwave – see instructions below), […]

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Prep School: How to Caramelize Onions

Something magical happens when you slice a couple of onions and slowly sauté them in butter and olive oil over low heat: they begin to caramelize and turn a beautiful golden brown, filling your house with the heady promise of a seriously delicious dinner. It’s one of my favorite smells in the entire universe. The […]

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Prep School: Techniques – How to Make a Béchamel Sauce

While its fancy Frenchy name may sound a little intimidating and induce a culinary knee-knocker, learning how to make this basic white sauce isn’t so scary once you master the technique. Named after its inventor, Louis XIV’s steward, Louis de Béchamel (at least that’s the word on the street), it is known as one of […]

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Prep School: D.I.Y. – Vanilla Extract

First of all, you know how much I have professed my undying love for Nielsen-Massey extracts, no? Believe me, my crush is still in tact. But, you know what? Lately, I have been using an inordinate amount of vanilla beans (those little black flecks in ice cream and pudding are so pretty!) and I just […]

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Prep School: How to Roast Garlic

There’s a magical transformation that happens to garlic when it sits in a hot oven for a spell. It mellows its sharp flavor and gives the garlic a caramelized sweetness that is crazy good. Tuck it into soups and stews, add it to pasta sauces or upgrade your lunch fare by spreading it on your […]

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Prep School: How to Make Perfect Scrambled Eggs

Although most people know how to scramble eggs – they’re easy enough to prepare, after all – many don’t know that there are actually a few tricks to help you turn out really good scrambled eggs that are creamy and delicious every, single time. Rule #1: Scramble the eggs over low heat. This takes a little patience […]

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Prep School: How to Make Perfect Pie Crust

Okay, raise your hand if you’re a dough phobe. Come on, admit it! There’s nothing for you to be ashamed of. Pastry can be daunting (especially with its scary reputation for being particularly tricky). I’m here to hopefully allay your fears and help thee to get into the kitchen and make ye some seriously good homemade pie […]

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Prep School- Thanksgiving Survival Guide

Thanksgiving, notably the most elaborate feast of the year, is a celebration of beloved foods and customs that evokes happy memories of good times shared with our family and friends. It’s a day when we all come together to express through words and the pleasures of a bountiful table, how grateful we are to have […]

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Prep School: Baking – Back to Basics

‘Tis the season for some serious baking! But what some cooks neglect to take into account is that baking is a science and requires precise measuring and careful attention to detail. Here are some of my best tips to help boost your baking prowess and ensure your sweet success this holiday season. Before beginning any […]

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Prep School: D.I.Y. – Mulling Spices

Every year, as soon as those gourmet tins of mulling spices hit the specialty kitchen store shelves for the Christmas rush, you’ll find my copper pot on the stove simmering and glurping away with the season’s best aromas – orange, cinnamon, cloves, and allspice to name a few. But this year, the stop-buying-and-start-making-it-at-home bug hit […]

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Prep School: How to Cook Bacon the Easy Way

I have a dirty little secret – I sometimes use bacon as a culinary weapon. One morning, when I needed my husband up and out of bed earlier than usual, I intentionally cooked some bacon to coax him from his deep slumber. It worked, of course, because there is nothing more enticing, more seductive, than the ravishing […]

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Prep School: D.I.Y. – Tortilla Chips

There’s nothing wrong with picking up some restaurant-style tortilla chips at the market for a quick snack with some guacamole or salsa, but there’s something immensely satisfying about making your own. Whether you anoint the tortillas in hot oil or whether you prefer to bake them in the oven, either way, it’ll be real hard […]

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Prep School: Kitchen Tips Every Cook Should Know – Salt

Salt, in my opinion, is a magic ingredient. Salt not only tastes great, but it makes everything else taste better, too. Have you ever wondered exactly why sodium chloride sprinkled onto other foods has the power to unlock the doors to Flavortown? It is inherent in salt’s chemical nature and its incredible ability to heighten […]

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Prep School: Key Techniques – Deep-Frying

There’s no question that deep-frying can be a little intimidating. And, for many, frying, to you, only means one thing: fatty, greasy food. But that’s just not true when deep-frying is done properly. If you’ve never anointed anything in a bubbling cauldron of shiny oil, man, you are missing out on some seriously good eats. […]