Sifted: Expert Answers to Holiday Baking Questions

Sifted: Expert Answers to Holiday Baking Questions

Anjali Prasertong
Nov 17, 2010

A couple weeks ago, the Washington Post debuted Sifted, a holiday baking column which turns to some big names in baking for answers to readers' questions. Have a nagging question about getting the perfect crust on your artisan bread that you're sure bread expert Peter Reinhardt could answer? Now is your chance!

Sifted has an impressive roster of well-known bakers and Kitchn favorites, such as Joanne Chang of Boston's Flour Bakery, Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito of Baked in Brooklyn, dessert maven Rose Levy Berenbaum and cookbook author Dorie Greenspan.

Answers are clear and straightforward, but also give a glimpse of each baker's personality. One favorite is Lewis and Poliafito's answer to a question about the best icings, which includes this snippet of wisdom:

Now, if a recipe calls for some amalgam of sugar, butter and shortening, we suggest you burn the book. We have yet to find any icing that shortening can improve. If a recipe calls for sugar, butter and cream cheese, I suggest you keep it away from me. It is usually way too addictive, and I am embarrassed to admit that I love it.

Other notable answers include Lisa Yockelson's helpful breakdown of which butter is best for different types of cookies, Peter Reinhardt's techniques for achieving the best bread texture and Lewis and Poliafito's thoughts on how to avoid the dreaded cake "crown."

Check it out: Sifted

We look forward to reading Sifted over the coming months. Do you spot any of your favorite bakers among the experts?

Related: Good to the Grain: 5 Questions for Kim Boyce (Expert Interview)

(Image: Flickr member papalars licensed under Creative Commons)

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