Dipping into flavor
Dean's World Famous sauces and dips from Dean Batogowski include horseradish sauce, honey mustard, spicy mustard and curry dip can amp up snacks or sandwiches. Each 7-ounce jar costs 3.90- 6; to order by mail, visit deansworldfamous.com.
The Pastry Pro pastry cutter from chef Jamie Gwen worked like a charm, cutting through cold butter and blending nicely. An easy-to-grip plastic handle tops sturdy stainless-steel blades that make quick work of mixing. The curved frame picked up ingredients that typically stick to the sides of the bowl. It's also designed to mash potatoes. Dishwasher-safe. It's 20 by mail-order (surlatable.com or (800) 243-0852 and chefjamie.com).
Crisco drops trans fats
Last week Crisco officially announced its newly reformulated shortening with "0 grams trans fat per serving." Some folks have been baking with it for a while, though: Cans containing the new stuff had been quietly rotating onto grocery store shelves, according to company spokeswoman Maribeth Badertscher.
Trans fatty acids, commonly called trans fats, can raise the risk of heart disease and diabetes. Crisco joins a nationwide trend toward eliminating artificially produced trans fats in processed foods.
Trans fat-free Crisco shortening was introduced to consumers in 2004 but was discontinued because of production and performance problems. Ever since the solid shortening was first sold in 1911, it has been the home baker's cheap, shelf-stable alternative to lard and butter. Testers and consumers say the new Crisco looks and performs like the original product in the familiar blue cans.
Making it easy
Cupcake chic, Part I: Leave it to a mom to come up with a gizmo for toting cupcakes. The Cupcake Courier, designed by Jennifer Gunn of Altadena, Calif., is a five-piece molded plastic carrier. It has three stackable trays with 36 compartments, a detachable base and a roomy cover with handle; fully assembled, it is about the size of a portable sewing machine case. The unit can be used as a cake carrier. 32.99; www.cupcakecourier.com.
Cupcake chic, Part II: Wilton's Silly-Feet! silicone baking cups are reusable and come in a four-piece multicolored set, 9.99, available at Michaels craft stores or online at www.michaels.com.
Cupcake chic, Part III: Wilton's striped paper baking cups have designer style; standard (75-pack, 1.99) and mini (100-pack, 1.99) sizes, also available at Michaels.
Look no further to find modernistic serving bowls for a cosmic salad or Space Age stew. By Vollrath, the sleek beauties are double-wall insulated and made with heavy-gauge stainless steel. The intended advantage: Foods maintain their optimal temperature longer.
The 1-quart angled bowl is 30; the 1.9-quart, 48. Both may be ordered from La Cuisine, (703) 836-4435, www.lacuisineus.com.