Uses of a Sifter

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A sifter is a tool used in the kitchen for breaking up food or straining liquid. You can use a sifter for baking cakes, macarons, lemon curd, raspberry mousse, making pizza sauce, and tzatziki.

What is a sifter used for


The process of sifting adds air and lightens the ingredients.

Cakes need to have flour sifted prior to adding it to the other dry ingredients.

As a bakes in the oven, the sifted flour creates small air bubbles throughout the cake.

The cake has a bouncy feeling when you push your finger into it, instead of being dense.

You can feel and taste the difference of a cake that has had the flour sifted.


Macarons need to have their almond flour and icing sugar sifted to create the velvety smooth macaron shells.

Almond flour and icing sugar clump up into balls over time, if you were to use these ingredients as they are, they would produce a macaron shell that is lumpy.

Sifting these clumpy ingredients will produce a smooth, round, professional looking macaron.

Uses of a Sifter

Pizza Sauce

When making pizza sauce, canned tomatoes need to have the liquid removed from the can.

Place the tomatoes in the sifter by pouring the whole can through the sifter. Have a bowl underneath the sifter so it can catch all of the liquid.

Leave the tomatoes to sit for 1-2 hours.

Once the liquid has been removed, you can start mashing the tomatoes in a saucepan and start creating your pizza sauce.

Should you drain San Marzano tomatoes

Tzatziki Sauce

Tzatziki sauce is made by using yogurt. Yogurt has too much liquid in it to create tzatziki sauce.

Place a large piece of cheese cloth in the sifter, and then put your yogurt in the middle.

Wrap the cheese cloth around the yogurt and tie it up.

Place a bowl underneath the sifter to catch the liquid.

Place the yogurt in the sifter with the bowl underneath in the fridge for minimum 2 hours.

Remove the yogurt from the fridge and unwrap the cheesecloth. Place the thick yogurt in a fresh bowl to make your tzatziki.

Dusting Icing Sugar

Dusted icing sugar is a way to garnish some desserts, such as pain au chocolate. Place a tablespoon of icing sugar in a sifter and gently tap it to dust your desserts with a little icing sugar.

Uses of a Sifter

Lemon Curd

Lemon curd is used in lemon tarts to create a tart, sharp and creamy citrusy flavor.

Lemon curd must be strained of all of the lemon rind prior to filling the tarts.

The lemon rind is strained using a sifter.

sifter uses

Raspberry Mousse

Raspberry mousse is one of the sweetest and creamiest mousse you’ll ever taste! It’s even better than chocolate mousse.

Raspberry mousse is made by making a raspberry sugar syrup using the thickener gelatin.

Once the syrup is made, the seeds of the raspberry must be removed.

The raspberry syrup is strained through a sifter to remove the seeds.

Check out our vegan raspberry mousse recipe that doesn’t use any gelatin in it.

Vegan Raspberry Mousse Without Gelatin

What is a sifter

A sifter is a kitchen accessory that usually has a handle and metal basket. The basket has metal criss crosses creating a bowl shape that allows small pieces of food to pass through.

A sifter increases the surface area available for mixing dry ingredients into liquid ingredients.

Ingredients are more evenly spread when using a sifter which creates a balance of flavors and textures.

Uses of a Sifter

What is a Rolling Pin Used For

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A rolling pin is a large cylindrical object that has smooth sides to be able flatten foods.

Learn how to use a rolling pin.

Uses for Rolling Pins

You can use a rolling pin for a variety of purposes including:

  • pita bread
  • tortillas
  • cookie dough – sugar cookies, shortbread cookies, etc.
  • croissants
  • pastry dough
  • pizza dough
  • pasta dough
  • scone dough
  • cinnamon roll dough
  • puff pastry dough
  • turnovers
  • pie crust
  • tart dough
  • flatbread dough
What is a Rolling Pin Used For

What types of rolling pins are there

What types of rolling pins are there

What are rolling pin rings for

Rolling pin rings are for flattening a dough to an exact and precise measurement.

Tart dough, pie crust, and crackers all require dough to be flattened to a specific measurement.

Rolling pin rings sit on the edges of the rolling pin.

They will stop the dough from flattening any further than your required measurement.

uses for rolling pins

How to Use a Piping Bag with a Coupler

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What is a baking coupler

A baking coupler is a piping bag that has the ability for you to change the tips on it without filling another piping bag. A baking coupler can be helpful if you’re trying to make different shapes using a variety of tips for a baking project.

See video here.

What is a baking coupler

How to use a piping bag with a coupler

  1. Gather your tools. You’ll need your piping bag, piping tips, coupler, a large glass, and food to place into the piping bag.
  2. Assemble the coupler by placing the piping tip on the plastic end of the piping bag.
  3. Place the coupler over the piping tip to hold the piping tip in place.
  4. Screw the coupler onto the plastic ended piping bag to surely fasten the coupler.
  5. Fold the tip of the bag upwards, to prevent any food from dripping out of the bag while filling.
  6. Place the folded bag into the large glass.
  7. Fold the edges of the piping bag over the glass.
  8. Fill the piping bag with your desired recipe.
  9. Remove the edges of the piping bag from the glass.
  10. Grab the end of the piping bag and remove it from the glass. Tip the piping bag upside down so the tip is facing the ceiling.
  11. Twist the bottom of the bag to hold the contents inside the bag. Push the recipe until it almost comes to the piping tip.
  12. You’re ready to pipe your first design.
  13. When you’re ready to change your piping tip, unscrew the coupler.
  14. Remove the piping tip.
  15. Place a new piping tip on the coupler.
  16. Screw the coupler back on, and continue piping.

When can you use a baking coupler

You can use a baking coupler when:

  • piping Swan Eclairs (see video above)
  • piping icing for cookies
  • piping cookies
  • piping icing for cakes

Using a coupler is helpful for baking when you need to change tips frequently for your baking project. A coupler is a necessity for piping icing for cookies and cakes that need a variety of piping tips to complete a baking project.

When can you use a baking coupler

How to Fit a Nozzle to a Piping Bag

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What is a piping nozzle

A piping nozzle is used at the end of a piping bag to create a funnel for the food to be pushed through. Piping nozzle’s come in all sorts of decorative shapes and sizes to make beautiful designs when baking.

How to Fit Nozzle to a Piping Bag

What kind of nozzle do you need for your piping bag

Select the nozzle for your piping bag depending on what you need it for.

If you’re piping cookies, you’ll probably want a large circle ended nozzle.

If you’re doing some decorative work, pick the star or jagged edged nozzle for your project.

To fit a nozzle to a piping bag, assemble the following items:

  • piping bag
  • nozzle
  • scissors
  • large tall glass
  1. Place the nozzle inside the piping bag with the narrow end facing the tip of the piping bag.
  2. Push the nozzle as far into the tip as possible, at some point it will not be able to go any further.
  3. Twist the bag below the nozzle a few turns. This will prevent any food from going to the nozzle while we fill the piping bag.
  4. Place the twisted part of the bag into the glass. It’s best if the bag is placed in the glass, with the nozzle up the side of the glass. Since the bag is essentially folded, there won’t be any food that travels up the side of the glass, giving you plenty of room fit the nozzle to the piping bag.
  5. Fold the opening of the piping bag over the edges of the glass.
  6. Fill the piping bag.
  7. Take the folded ends of the bag that are over the glass and twist the end of the bag closed.
  8. Lie the piping bag on it’s side. Estimate where the nozzle needs to sit in the piping bag. The piping bag should sit snugly against the nozzle. The piping bag should be cut just below where the decorative tip will be pushing out of the bag.
  9. Cut the piping bag with scissors. You’ll want it to be a clean cut.
  10. Gently guide the nozzle through the end of the piping bag. If it is pushing out of the bag enough, you’re ready to start piping. If it isn’t quite cut enough, make another cut to make sure the nozzle is pushing out of the bag.
  11. Hold the piping bag in your hands with the nozzle facing the the ceiling.
  12. Twist the piping bag to gently push the food to the top of the nozzle.
  13. Now you’re ready to pipe with your nozzle fitted to your piping bag.

How to Assemble a Piping Bag

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To assemble a piping bag, you’ll need:

  • large wide mouthed, tall glass
  • piping bag
  • piping tip
  • scissors
  1. Place a piping tip inside a piping bag at the end of the bag.
  2. Twist the bag right above the piping tip. (see photos below)
  3. Fold the twisted end upwards, to prevent the contents from seeping out.
  4. Place the bag in a large tall glass.
  5. Fold the edges of the bag over the glass.
  6. Fill the piping bag.
  7. Twist the piping bag closed. Lift the bag up and place it on its side on the counter.
  8. Measure how far you will need to cut the bag from the end to expose the piping tip.
  9. Cut the piping bag about 1/2-1″ from the end.
  10. Gently guide the piping tip down so it sits perfectly at the end of the piping bag.
  11. Twist the piping bag to push the contents down and let it come out of the piping bag.
  12. Pipe.
How to Assemble a Piping Bag

Best Edible Markers for Cookies

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The best edible markers for cookies are Wilton’s FoodWriter markers.

Wilton’s edible markers are unique in that they dry almost immediately so you do not have the risk of any smudge marks.

Wilton has a huge variety of colors, everything from black to neon colors.

Wilton’s edible markers have a very fine tip to them, so you’re able to make those detailed points in your designs on cookies without any issues.

  • fine tipped
  • dries instantly
  • neon colors
  • primary colors
  • black only
  • food grade quality
  • long lasting
  • easy to use

Edible markers can be used to create designs on macarons, royal icing, fondant, marshmallows, and cookies.

Edible markers can be used to create eyes and faces of characters with just a couple of pen strokes.

Edible markers work well to highlight bodies of characters or other important parts of your designs.

Black is the most common edible marker color used because it shows up well on just about any background.

See video here.

Best Edible Markers

What is an edible marker

An edible marker is a food grade marker you can use to make designs on your favorite baked goods.

How do you use an edible pen

  1. Place your food you want to write on, on a steady surface.
  2. Remove the cap from the edible pen and hold it like a regular pen.
  3. Gently touch the surface of the edible pen to your food and begin writing. Sometimes you’ll need to press a bit harder than a regular pen to get clean lines on your food.
  4. When you’re finished with your design, let the food dry for a few minutes prior to storing it.
How do you use an edible pen

Edible markers for cookies

You can use edible markers directly on cookies such as macarons. You’ll want to be extra careful with your pressure when decorating macarons with edible markers. Macarons are delicate, if you press too hard, you could push the shell and ruin it. Go as gently as possible when decorating macarons with edible markers.

Edible markers for cookies

Can you use edible marker on royal icing

You can use an edible marker on royal icing after the icing has dried. Let the royal icing dry for 8 hours, then use your edible markers to add a touch of color to your icing.

Using edible markers on royal icing makes it easy to add dots for eyes or small details. It’s much more difficult to add these fine details using icing than it is to use an edible marker.

Best Edible Markers for cookies

Edible markers for chocolate

You can use edible markers for chocolate, however the surface of chocolate is quite smooth. Sometimes the marker finds it difficult to adhere to the chocolate. Try pressing a little harder to get your edible marker to show up on your chocolate.

Edible markers for fondant

Edible markers are wonderful for using on fondant. Since fondant dries hard, you can use your edible markers with ease on fondant.

There are a ton of different colors you can use with edible markers on fondant.

Keep in mind the edible markers need to be darker than the fondant color to make them show up nice and vibrant.

Edible markers for cakes

Edible markers can be used on cakes that the icing has dried hard. If the icing is soft, the marker will not adhere to the icing, and you have the risk of the icing being smushed by the marker.

Use your edible markers gently on your dried icing on cakes to give them some added color and design that will wow your guests!

Best Edible Markers

How to Clean a Garlic Press

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  1. Open the garlic press to expose the garlic trapped inside the press.
  2. Some garlic presses have an easy removing feature. It will look similar to the makeup of the garlic press, but generally it’s rubber. Fold the garlic press in the opposite direction to remove the garlic residue from the garlic press.
  3. If your garlic press does not have the easy removal option, add a little oil to the garlic that is trapped inside the press.
  4. Take a flat ended sturdy metal kitchen utensil (a butter knife or the end of a measuring cup) and scrape the garlic press clean. Do not remove the garlic with your fingers, or your fingers will smell like garlic.
  5. Soak the garlic press in warm soapy water, and use a cloth to clean the garlic press. If you prefer to use a dishwasher, lie the garlic press flat and place it on the top rack. The garlic press will come out spotless when cleaned with a dishwasher. However, there is a risk of the rubber or plastic parts of the garlic press deteriorating over time.
How to Clean a Garlic Press

Can you use a garlic press without peeling

You can use a garlic press without peeling the garlic first, but it does make cleaning the garlic press much more difficult.

How to Clean a Garlic Press

Is using a garlic press the same as mincing

Mincing garlic is chopping garlic up into very small pieces. Whereas, using a garlic press crushes the garlic. A garlic press exposes more the edges of the garlic than chopping. Therefore using a garlic press is just about the same as mincing garlic, but with a lot less effort.

Is using a garlic press the same as mincing

Can you grate garlic

If you don’t have a mincer, you can grate garlic by rubbing it up and down on a grater with the smallest holes. Be careful when you get close to the end of the garlic, as you may have the potential to hurt your fingers if they come in contact with the grater.

Can you use a garlic press for Ginger

You can use a garlic press for ginger with a bit more force. Ginger can be quite large, make sure to cut your piece of ginger so it fits nicely in your garlic press. Then use quite a bit of strength to push the ginger through the press.

How to Prepare a Garlic Clove

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Preparing a garlic clove for mincing involves using a butter knife to press the garlic first. This allows the paper skin to come off much more easily.

How to prepare and mince a garlic clove

  1. Gently remove 1 garlic clove from a garlic bulb by pulling the garlic bulb apart. Remove 1 garlic from the garlic bulb.
  2. Take the garlic clove and put it on a cutting board.
  3. Use a butter knife horizontally and press the garlic down a little. You’ll hear the garlic come away from the paper.
  4. Gently remove the papery skin from the garlic clove.
  5. Place the garlic cloves in the garlic press. Usually you can fit 2-3 garlic cloves in at once.
  6. Press the garlic together by using the handles. Use only 1 hand to press the garlic together. The garlic will come through the holes on the other side, so be prepared for a little bit to fall. You can have a dish for it to fall into.
  7. Using a butter knife, scrape the garlic from the garlic press and into your recipe.
  8. Using a butter knife, scrape the inside of the rest of the garlic that didn’t make it through the press. Discard this garlic.
  9. Your garlic is ready for your recipe and your garlic press can be placed in the dishwasher to clean.

Can you store garlic in the fridge

Do not store garlic in the fridge, this is not the ideal temperature for garlic. Store garlic at room temperature.

How to store garlic

Store garlic in a dry, dark area at room temperature. Keeping garlic at room temperature will prevent the garlic from creating any sprouts. Store garlic in a cabinet with no moisture and low humidity. Moisture can create bacterial growth on your garlic, so it’s best kept in a cabinet away from any splashes. Garlic can be exposed to the air, so keeping it in a bowl in a cabinet will work well for storage.

What can you use if you don’t have a garlic press

You can use a grater if you don’t have a garlic press, or you can use a sharp knife to cut the garlic into small pieces. These are not ideal options as they pose a risk of hurting yourself. Grating garlic is hard to do at the end of a garlic piece, only grate the garlic about 3/4 way to prevent grating your skin. Cutting garlic is another option, but it’s difficult to cut the garlic into small enough pieces for a recipe.

Is it better to mince or chop garlic

How to Cut in Butter

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What does it mean to cut in butter?

“To cut in butter” means to break butter into smaller pieces. Typically the smaller pieces are about a pea sized portion or smaller.

Butter is cut into recipes that need small chunks of butter to melt into the food to create flakes of pastry.

If you’re cutting in butter to your recipe, it’s best to use cold fat to cut in for your pastry. The butter will remain in small cube and be able to melt in the oven.

If you melt your butter prematurely to use for your recipe, you wont get the flakiness for your desired pastry.

How to Cut in Butter

  1. Your bowl should be full of flour, baking powder or soda, salt, and sugar. Mix them together.
  2. Add your cold chunk of butter to the bowl.
  3. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter down until you reach the bowl.
  4. Remove the pastry blender from the butter. You can remove excess butter from the pastry blender by using a knife.
  5. Repeat the process of cutting the butter. Change your angle to create smaller pieces until they become a pea sized amount.
  6. Your recipe is ready to add the liquid ingredients now (eggs, milk, etc.)
how to use a pastry blender
what coarse crumbs looks like after using a pastry blender

What does it mean to cut butter into dry ingredients

Butter needs to be cut into a recipe only after all of the dry ingredients have been added together.

Dry ingredients include: flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, cocoa powder, etc.

The butter needs to be placed in the center of your dry ingredient bowl because the flour mixture must coat the butter.

The flour coated butter is easily cut into recipes because the flour coats the butter as it is cut. The flour acts as a barrier to enclose the butter. This way, the butter will not mix with any of the wet ingredients.

The butter will only be melted in the oven, creating a delicious flakey pastry.

How to cut frozen butter

  1. Freeze butter until it has solidified.
  2. Remove the butter from the freezer and using a grater, grate the butter into small pieces. Depending on your recipe you might want to use the smaller holes, over bigger holes.
  3. Grate until all of the butter is in pieces.

How to cut in butter for crumble topping

For crumble topping, you have a couple of different options to cut in your butter.

  1. Use your hands: this involves your hands warming the butter a little, and then squishing it with your fingers to create small lumps of butter for your crumble topping. Usually crumble topping is mixed by hand because it creates more of a lumpy mixture than if you’re using a spoon. The lumpy mixture is more desirable because the topping tends to look more coarse and not as uniform.
  2. Use a pastry blender: cut the butter into the topping by using a pastry blender. Keep the butter in larger chunks than you would a pastry, because the topping will be able to retain its moisture better. The topping should be coarse and look like nuggets for crumble topping.
  3. Use a grater: grate using one of the medium holes. Grate the butter and then mix the topping together with your fingers. Gently sprinkle the topping over your dessert, and then bake.

What does cut in shortening mean

If you’re cutting in shortening, this means to break up the shortening into small pieces. Use a pastry blender to separate the shortening into smaller pieces for your recipe.

What can you use if you don’t have a pastry cutter

If you don’t have a pastry cutter you can use two knives to cut the pastry into smaller pieces. The pieces need to be quite small, they should look like coarse crumbs.

Using 2 knives to cut in butter will take longer than using a pastry cutter.

Can you use a potato masher instead of a pastry cutter

You can use a potato masher instead of a pastry cutter if you butter is a pretty large piece. Once your butter becomes a more useful size to work with, switch back to your pastry cutter.

A pastry cutter has sharp edges to really cut the butter and not mush it. The butter will retain its shape instead of being pushed into a shape.

How to cut in butter with fork

To cut in butter with a fork, use your largest fork to cut into your butter. Hold your fork horizontally and press the fork into the butter to cut it. Repeat and continue cutting the butter with your fork until the butter is in coarse crumbs.

What kind of foods do you cut butter into

  • scones
  • pie pastry dough
  • biscuits
  • crumble topping
how to cut in butter

How to Use a Spatula for Baking

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Spatulas are rubber, they are meant to bend and move as needed to conform to the sides of the bowl you are scraping.

If you’re making batter using a stand mixer, sometimes the food will be pushed up the sides of the bowl. This is when you want to stop the mixer, and using the end of the rubber spatula, push the food down to the bottom of the bowl.

To get the excess batter off of your rubber spatula, run it against paddle or whisk attachment of your mixer. Set your spatula aside.

Turn your stand mixer on again and mix the rest of the contents.

When you’re finished incorporating all of your batter, it’s time to put your batter in or on your pan.

You can use the spatula again to scrape the batter into your pan.

Or, if you’re working with a thicker dough like cookie dough, you can scrape the contents on the bottom to make sure you get as much of the dough you’ve made as possible.

See video here.

Spatula uses in baking

A spatula is a rubber ended tool that is used in baking in a couple of different ways.

  • scrape the sides of a bowl
  • shaping butter
  • mixing
  • pouring batter and scraping it into a pan

How to use a spatula for butter

When making a butter layer for croissant dough, you use your rubber spatula to push the butter into a perfect rectangle.

Begin by placing the room temperature butter on top of a silicone pastry mat.

Push the butter into a rectangle by using your rubber spatula as tool.

Measure your butter as you go. The sides will become thin. To make them into the thick butter layer that you want, push the excess butter remnants from the silicone mat into the rectangular sides.

Can a rubber spatula melt

Yes, a rubber spatula can melt if it used over heat. Rubber has a melting point of 180 degrees Celsius. You will want to use a wooden spoon if you’re cooking with a saucepan instead of a rubber spatula.

Is rubber scraper a mixing tool

Yes, you can use a rubber scraper as a mixing tool for batter such as muffin batter or cake batter.

These batters are to be mixed only until just combined, therefore using a rubber spatula for a couple of mixes will be ideal for your batter.

A rubber spatula is fairly small and flexible. For thicker doughs like cookie doughs a rubber spatula will not work as well. The dough is too tough to mix with a rubber spatula. It’s best to use a stand mixer or wooden spoon for these types of thicker doughs.