10 Jan2012

Every once in a while, I do something in the kitchen (or read about it elsewhere and try it for myself) and hope I will remember it at some future point… it’s usually some sort of “shortcut” or a piece of knowledge useful for the creation, maintenance, improvement, etc. of something food or entertaining related. So I have decided to do these “quick tip” posts to record these thoughts for my future use, but to give folks with really short attention spans something to read and take away in 15 seconds or so…

Uneven graham cracker or other crusts on the bottom of a cheesecake drive me and perhaps other OC-tending people a bit nuts. I like a nice, even crust, and almost never get it when I press the crust down with my fingers. So the other week I used a small meat pounder or flattener and used it to even out the crust… it worked great. :)



  1. kim e says:

    that’s a good idea, I always obsessed with attaining an even crust but when I use my fingers i end up with less crust in the middle.

    Jan 10, 2012 | 6:52 pm


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  3. Patricia says:

    It looks like the handle of a samurai sword! :P

    Jan 10, 2012 | 7:00 pm

  4. Mimi says:

    It does look like a sword handle. I just use the bottom of a glass.

    Jan 10, 2012 | 7:34 pm

  5. larry locara says:

    Lupo is alternantera sessilis and you can read more about this at http://www.stuartxchange.com/BungaBunga.html

    Jan 10, 2012 | 9:12 pm

  6. izang says:

    like it….

    Jan 10, 2012 | 10:10 pm

  7. Nicole says:

    looks good and the added weight of the meat pounder makes it much easier. I unfortunately don’t have that but I use the bottom of my measuring cup, it takes time but eventually my bottom crust is all even and perfect!

    Jan 10, 2012 | 10:32 pm

  8. Footloose says:

    Consider submitting them to Cook’s Illustrated, the only food publication I buy now since they yanked away Gourmet”s life support. They publish tips like this in exchange for a year’s free subscription.

    Jan 10, 2012 | 10:45 pm

  9. Mary Lee says:

    Good tip. But I always knew you suffered from OCD.

    Jan 10, 2012 | 10:50 pm

  10. Betchay says:

    Footloose, I love Cook’s Illustrated too but content myself buying back issues from my favorite bookstore–Booksale!
    Good tip MM.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 12:50 am

  11. bakerwannabe says:

    Footloose, I have Cook’s Illustrated too. I love their tips and their equipment and gadget recommendations and ratings. I am getting addicted to this site. Must have perused most of the old postings to get recipes and ideas. MM you are such a great resource of home cooking recipes and food ingredients. What makes you apart from others is your openess in sharing your knowledge and accepting other people’s suggestions as well. Thank you for your generosity.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 1:14 am

  12. Roddy says:

    Excellent tip..I’ve been calling my crust “rustic” as an excuse for not getting an even look.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 8:00 am

  13. millet says:

    oo nga no? am having a “why didn’t i think of that before?” moment. thanks for the tip, MM. my crusts are always uneven. and it’s hard to compact them with the back of a spoon.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 9:01 am

  14. florisa says:

    now that’s a great idea!

    Jan 11, 2012 | 9:56 am

  15. ami says:

    Patricia – you nailed my thoughts exactly.

    I had a serious hankering for a cheesecake for a couple of weeks some time ago. Probably caused by my not getting a cake for my birthday then.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 12:58 pm

  16. farida says:

    thanks, for this tip, MM. @#10..exactly my sentiments of MM’s generosity.

    Jan 11, 2012 | 2:03 pm

  17. PITS, MANILA says:

    great, MM! thanks … hope to remember this …

    Jan 11, 2012 | 9:51 pm

  18. little mary says:

    since i do not have a meat pounder, i use the bottom of my measuring cup instead, got this tip from king arthur flour “baking banter” blog.

    Jan 12, 2012 | 9:17 am

  19. Pam says:

    Ah another category to look forward to. Thanks for being so generous, MM!

    Jan 12, 2012 | 2:46 pm

  20. marissewalangkaparis says:

    great idea…hmmm…which reminds me…i havent made pies for some time…..should make some….

    Jan 14, 2012 | 4:54 am

  21. Katrina says:

    Hello, MM! I KNOW, it’s been a long, long time since you’ve seen me here. I have no excuse, save to say that life got in the way and blog-reading fell by the wayside. I’ve pretty much caught up on the other blogs, but I kept getting intimidated by yours, because you post so prolifically that I was daunted by the multitude of posts I’d have to catch up on! Imagine, I didn’t even know until recently that you had started selling your lechon commercially and Zubuchon now has several branches; that I’ve missed EBs and the chance to meet more of your readers; and that the Teen is all grown up and out of the house! I had intended to go through the last couple of years’ posts before reappearing here, but realized that that was the reason I kept postponing it. And I missed you, your blog and your other readers too much already. So, I’ve decided that I’ll just ease into it and read only what I’m able to, for now, until I feel can once again call myself a loyal and regular MM fan. ;-)

    Anyway, as a way to get back into the MM fold, as it were, and since this post is about quick tips, I’d like to mention a little tip I just recently learned. I’m sure you already know about this, since it’s from Saveur, but maybe some of your readers haven’t yet. Apologies if this has been posted here before. It’s just a handy way to peel garlic quickly. I LOVE this method because peeling garlic (especially in the quantities I use) can be a chore. I just amended the method a bit because I’m not strong enough to smash the whole bulb with my hand and I don’t have stainless steel bowls. Instead, I smash the bulb with a heavy object and use a metal stockpot with the lid on. Here’s the video demo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0d3oc24fD-c

    I’m excited to once again be a Marketmanila reader! :-)

    Jan 14, 2012 | 10:02 pm

  22. Part Time Homemaker says:

    I usually use another pan that is one size smaller to pack the crust down since I’m lazy, but I always regret it after because I have to wash one extra big thing. Hehehe. I will definitely try this next time instead!

    Jan 17, 2012 | 11:25 pm


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