The New Year is nearly upon us, and amidst all the Yuletide merriment we all tend to both look forward and reflect on the past. In the Clabber Girl kitchen, it’s only natural to to associate some of our favorite memories with our favorite menus. The baking bliss really overtook us in 2014 with new culinary adventures, creative flavor combinations and modern twists on old favorites.
Let’s relive our favorite moments savoring the sweet tooth. Here are the top 10 baking trends and recipes that rocked kitchens in 2014.
10. Small Bites
Not only are they super cute, but they are also super sweet. Mini desserts let us indulge without the guilt. 2014 was the year for party platters stacked with elegant samples of bite-sized cheesecakes, cupcakes, brownies and more. Missed out on the mini trend? It’s not too late. A batch of these Mini Apple Pie Bundt Cakes will make a bigger splash than the ball drop at your New Year’s Eve party!
9. Whoopie Pies
A sandwich is just a sandwich – unless it’s made from two soft cakes stuffed with a rich cream filling! This decadent dessert from New England spread to kitchens across the country with recipes like this dreamy, creamy Chocolate Raspberry Whoopie Pie.
Gluten-free foods took grocery stores by storm in 2014. Gluten, a protein in wheat, can make the digestion process rather uncomfortable, especially for those with celiac disease. However, you can find decadent and moist gluten-free breads in thousands of ovens across the country. Compliment dinner with these gluten-free parmesan-rosemary rolls or finish up a meal with these gluten-free honey peanut butter and jam cookies.
7. Surprise Inside!
From gender reveal cakes to multicolored rainbow layers, decorating the inside of your fluffy layer cake has becomes just as much fun as decorating the outside. New parents slice into a cake to see either blue or pink, finally discovering the sex of their baby. Color isn’t the only way to sneak in a surprise inside – layer cakes with shapes or checker boards and breads with pumpkins, Christmas trees or flowers also top the lists. Our Pinterest board has even more ideas!
6. Fancy Frosting
Some desserts look too good to eat! Okay, maybe not, but the art of decorating really found momentum in 2014. Piping designs, frosting techniques and fondant decorations turned thousands of cakes and cookies into majestic, mouth-watering works of art. You can make it hardcore homemade by creating a fluffy frosting from scratch.
Baking bread in 2014 got down to the grainy basics. More and more kitchen weekend warriors rolled out their own dough, used only organic, local ingredients and removed any artificial flavors or substances from their recipes. The result? Piping hot and healthy whole grain biscuits, honey graham crackers and vegan nutty granola cereal.
4. Brown Butter
For a recipe so simple, the richness and flavor is so incredible it’s almost unbelievable. Brown butter is just that – butter that has been heated and stirred constantly until it’s brown. The nutty, toasted flavor blends up richer sauces and moist baked goods. Try using brown butter in the buttercream frosting Clabber Girl’s savory Irish pub brownies.
3. Salted Caramel
It’s nature’s most decadent love story –a bite of sea salt embedded in the honey sweetness caramel. The combination is a euphoric experience. In 2014, this sinful sweet moved from the novelty dessert menu and into the mainstream. Recipes for tarts, cookies, candies, ice cream, frostings and cupcakes have all been enchanted by the smooth flavor of salted caramel.
2. Spirited Sweets
The flavor combinations of alcohol and baking make for a wicked sweet treat. Liquor isn’t the only spirited ingredient at hand; craft beer has been topping baker’s 2014 lists for both breads and desserts. Nothing says comfort food like beer bread or craft brew cheddar biscuits.
1. Biscuit Sandwiches (our favorite!)
Buttermilk biscuits, a staple on any comfort food menu, are migrating from the breakfast table to any table. From beef brisket to kale, tomato and goat cheese, biscuit sandwiches have dominated restaurants and recipes in 2014. The next time you cook up some thick, savory applewood smoked bacon for a BLT, toss away the bread and try our decadent, flaky cheddar and chive drop biscuits instead.
In 2014 ovens were bringing the heat with these top baking trends. Party platters piled high with concoctions from cooks unafraid of tackling new, inventive and challenging recipes. What about your favorite recipes? Tell us about some of the sweetest successes or funniest flops from your kitchen in 2014!