These Are “No-Bake” because my dorm doesn’t have an oven :\
If you are dying to pop something in the oven, look at these blogs:
No-Bake Yogurt Pies: I use Yo-plait yogurts and Jell-o Brand
The following require whipped cream; you might want to make homemade whipped cream to avoid the hydrogenated vegetable oil (trans fats) in cool whip.
Pineapple | Strawberry | Cherry | Raspberry | Berry | Orange | Peach | Mango | Blueberry
Lemon-Lime | Cranberry-Mango | Orange Creme | Lemon-Blueberry | Raspberry-Melon
Cherry Lemonade | Orange Pineapple | Strawberry Lemon | Cherry Limeade
Toppings & Sauces:
These can easily be manipulated to yield more or less.
Tips When cooking desserts:
Even though these are no-bake cakes and pies, these are some helpful tips.
For best results, refrigerate all ingredients prior to making the dough - even the flour.
Use pastry flour or all-purpose. Bread flour has too much gluten to make a tender crust, and cake flour is too soft to give the proper body.
Lard and shortening produce the most tender crusts. You may use half lard or shortening and half butter if you want the buttery flavor.
The pockets of fat make the flakiness in the crust. Use a pastry blender or 2 knives to cut in fat. Dough should still have some pea-size pieces. Handle as little as possible with your hands.
All liquids should be ice-cold.
For a flakier crust, substitute ice cold sour cream or heavy cream for the water.
Sugar in a pastry dough sweetens and tenderizes.
Blend liquid in just until the dough begins to hold together. Overworking toughens the dough.
Chill the dough for 30 minutes for easier rolling.
To prevent a soggy crust, refrigerate for 15 minutes before filling or seal by brushing with slightly beaten egg white, then refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Setting the pie pan on a metal baking sheet during baking also helps prevent soggy crusts.
Enhance the flavor of your dough by adding spices such as nutmeg, ginger, or cinnamon.
Meringue won’t “weep” if you blend a teaspoon of cornstarch into the sugar before beating it into the egg whites.
Sprinkle toasted ground nuts or fine cookie crumbs over the dough and gently press them in before filling or baking.
If your oven temperature is questionable, invest in an oven thermometer. Some ovens can be off by as much as 75°.
Before mixing the batter, prepare the pans, turn the oven on, and make sure the rack is in the center.
Shiny pans reflect the heat, and are your best choice for cake baking.
Reduce the oven temperature by 25° when using glass pans.
Substitute 8-inch square pans for round if you want, or use 2 to 3 8 X 4-inch loaf pans. The baking time will be less, so begin checking about 15 minutes before the time suggested.
Have all ingredients at room temperature for best results.
Grease pans with about 1 tablespoon of fat per layer pan.
Use cocoa (or carob powder) instead of flour for dusting a greased pan when making a chocolate cake.
When measuring flour, fluff it in the bag then spoon into the measuring cup; level off with a knife.
To “lighten” a hard wheat flour, spoon 2 to 4 tablespoons of cornstarch into a 1-cup dry measure, then sprinkle the flour in until full and scrape off the excess with the back side of a knife.
For better texture, try substituting buttermilk for regular milk in your cake recipe. For each cup of buttermilk used, add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to the dry ingredients.
Beat butter and sugar for as long as the recipe directs.
To make a lighter cake, separate the eggs first. Add the yolks to the butter mixture, beat the egg whites then fold into the batter.
In general, use 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder for every cup of flour in cake batters.
To speed up the softening of cold butter, grate or thinly slice it and let stand for about 10 minutes over a bowl of warm water.
Toss nuts, raisins and chopped fruits in flour first. This will help keep them suspended in batters.
To split layer cakes loop a long strand of unflavored dental floss around the center of the cake horizontally. Cross the ends and slowly and firmly pull on each end to cut cleanly through the cake.
Cool the cake thoroughly before frosting.