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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Best Baking Tips From the Farmers’ Almanac

Best Baking Tips From the Farmers’ Almanac
  • Do not use fresh or frozen pineapple in gelatin recipes, as the gelatin will not set. (You can use canned pineapple.)
  • When testing to see if your cake if fully baked, use a strand of uncooked spaghetti if a toothpick isn’t long enough.
  • Keep your recipe cards in front of you by standing a fork, tines up, in a glass and then placing a card in the tines.
  • Nuts will be easier to shell if you place 2 cups of nuts in a 1-quart casserole with 1 cup of water. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, and the nutmeats will slip out whole after cracking the shell.
  • For faster creaming of butter and sugar, rinse the bowl in boiling water first.
  • When melting chocolate, first coat your pan with butter to prevent the chocolate from sticking to the pan.
  • To prevent a soggy crust when making a cream-filled pie, sprinkle crust with powdered sugar.
  • Meringue pies will cut neatly if the knife is first dipped in cold water.
  • To divide a pie into five equal portions, first cut a “Y” then slice each of the two larger sections in half.
  • Drop an egg on the floor? Cover it with salt, then sweep it up. No slimy mess.
  • When baking bread, a small dish of water set in the oven will help keep the crust from getting too hard or too brown.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.