Emeril's Guide to Basic Cooking for Kids

Beating
This means mixing things together quickly so that air is added to the mixture and it becomes smooth and creamy. Usually done with a mixer, you can also beat things with a spoon -- it just takes a little elbow grease!

Stirring
Use a spoon to stir in a circular motion until the ingredients are all blended.

Folding
This is a way of mixing things together very gently so that they stay fluffy. Use a large plastic or rubber spatula and, instead of stirring, place it into the bowl and combine the ingredients with two or three up-and-over, or "folding," motions. Don't overmix!

Sifting
This is done to make sure there are no lumps in dry foods like flour or sugar. Just hold the sifter over a bowl and shake from side to side (some sifters have knobs to turn or handles to squeeze).

Creaming
This refers to beating butter and sugar together very well until it becomes light and "creamy."

Soft peaks This term is used when beating things like heavy cream or egg whites. After you turn the mixer off and lift the beaters out of the bowl, if a little of the mixture comes up where the beaters were, forming a soft mound that stays up, that's a soft peak.

 

Scraping down bowl
This is done to make sure everything gets mixed evenly. Just hold the edge of the mixing bowl in one hand, then run a plastic or rubber spatula all the way around the inside of the bowl to "scrape down" the sides.

Eggs
Eggs come in different sizes. When using eggs for the recipes in this book, always use the ones labeled large.

Working butter into flour
You can do this with a pastry blender, two forks or butter knives, or your fingers. The main thing is that the butter is rubbed into the flour so that only small pieces of butter are visible and the rest has been combined with the flour. When it's done, it will look like small

Softening butter
If a recipe calls for butter to be softened, it means at room temperature -- not straight from the refrigerator. If you forget to take the butter out to soften, try placing it in a microwave-proof bowl and microwave on high for 5 to 10 seconds. This works great.

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