Dear Barbara: My husband has high cholesterol and he loves all the holiday baking. I try to cut corners where I can on the cholesterol content. I noticed that the Egg Beaters, or liquid eggs, don’t have any cholesterol. Can you bake with the egg beaters? — Maureen from Lockeford
Dear Maureen: Yes, you can bake with the liquid eggs, such as Egg Beaters. I have had several people tell me that the liquid works exactly like regular eggs, only without the cholesterol. A quarter cup equals one whole egg. If you look on the inside lid of the egg carton, which I am sure you already have, you will see that one egg has 71 percent of the daily value of cholesterol. Heaven forbid if you ate a three egg omelet! Happy baking! He’ll never know the difference!
Dear Barbara: I really don’t like to bake, but it is nice to have some cookies around when someone comes over during the holidays. I am just fine with the refrigerated cookie dough rolls like Pillsbury, so it probably seems strange that I have a question.
Here’s the problem. It says to slice the dough into rounds. Have you tried that? They are smooshed and oval by the time you get them cut. The dough is stuck to my fingers and I just want to throw the whole thing in the garbage! Can you solve this one, or should I just go to a bakery and buy some cookies? — Tini from Lodi
Dear Tini: No, please don’t give up just yet! Unwrap the cookie dough, put it on a paper plate and put it in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Remove it from the freezer, and using a thin, sharp knife, cut the dough with a sawing motion, turning the tube frequently. Running your hands under very cold water will also help to keep the dough from sticking to your hands.
Holiday baking, be it from scratch or refrigerated cookie dough, should be fun, not a frustrating chore! Please try the suggestion and let me know how it worked for you.
Dear Barbara: I have a question about cookies. Most recipes say to soften the butter. I usually forget it in the microwave and it melts. Does it hurt the recipe if it is melted? Is it okay to put it in the refrigerator to solidify it and then use it in the recipe? — Susanne from Elk Grove
Dear Susanne: I never thought that it made a difference just as long as you chilled the melted butter a little until it started to harden. I have learned since that it really does make a difference.
The physical properties of the butter change once it has been melted, and therefore it doesn’t react the same when you add it to the other ingredients. Save the butter that melted and use it for cooking, but start again softening a different stick of butter for your cookies.
Barbara Spitzer is a Lodi home cook who also develops recipes for specific consumer products.
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