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Marshmallows as a Substitution

March 20, 1986|MINNIE BERNARDINO | Times Staff Writer

Question: What is the correct substitution for using marshmallows in place of marshmallow creme?

Answer: Direct substitution of these two products is not possible, according to home economists of the consumer service department of Kraft Foods in Illinois. They have done extensive testing on this matter and found that although similar recipes using marshmallows and marshmallow creme exist, each vary in time, temperature and ingredient requirements.

Differences in formulation and manufacturing processes between the two items result in varying levels of sweetness and consistencies. Marshmallow creme has more moisture and is a sweeter product.

The consumer staff, however, will be happy to send recipes using these products. Typically requested are recipes for fudge and puffed rice cereal bars. Write to: Kraft Consumer Service, Kraft Court, Glenview , Ill. 60025. Be as specific as possible when requesting recipes.

Q: Help! Can you please reprint a conversion table on gram weights and the equivalent cup/spoon measures of commonly used cake or pastry ingredients? As far as I can remember this was published around the Christmas holidays in 1981. I have found this valuable when translating recipes in foreign cookbooks that use the metric system.

A: You might consider obtaining a scale for this purpose since the results turn out more accurately. However, we're more than glad to provide the chart once more. But we leave you to do the rest of the mathematics based on these proportions:

1 cup all-purpose flour, unsifted.......126 grams

1 cup sifted all-purpose flour..........110 grams

1 cup cake flour, unsifted..............112 grams

1 cup sifted cake flour.................100 grams

1 cup powdered sugar (varies)...........176 grams

1 cup brown sugar.......................220 grams

1 tablespoon butter......................15 grams

1 tablespoon shortening..................15 grams

1 teaspoon baking powder..................3 grams

1 teaspoon baking soda....................3 grams

1 teaspoon salt...........................5 grams

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, cloves, allspice,

nutmeg, mace, etc..............................2 grams

1 tablespoon powdered cocoa...............6 grams

1 tablespoon arrowroot....................8 grams

1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts..........114 grams

1 cup raisins...........................151 grams

Q: Is it a taboo to buy and serve mushrooms that are open?

A: Mushroom growers say that the choice of whether to get mushrooms with open or closed veils (the thin membranes under the caps covering the gills) is a matter of personal taste. Closed veil mushrooms are crunchier and delicately flavored, whereas open veil mushrooms are known to have a more robust flavor.

Open veil mushrooms also are sometimes called European-style mushrooms because they are preferred by European chefs. Since the veils disappear later after harvest, people associate open veil mushrooms with maturity and poorer quality. As a general rule, avoid mushrooms that are dark, wrinkled, slimy and bruised rather than judging by the presence of the veil.

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