If you’ve followed me on Instagram, you know I have done a crazy silly challenge in the month of August. Each day in August, I have made a recipe from BA’s Best – a collection of the best essential recipes from Bon Appetit. Yes, 1 recipe per day, for 30 days straight. It’s obviously a lot of fun surprises, but tiring and sometimes disappointing at the same time.
Why did I start this challenge? Because I’m the loyalest #BAreader. Well, maybe also because I’ve never made a single recipe from Bon Appetit before this challenge. I love Bon Appetit for many reasons. Always eye-pleasing, always stylish, always creative and always leading. However, I just don’t usually make recipes from magazines (I already have a gazillion cookbooks waiting for me). So, as August might be the last free month I got before going back to school for Graphic Design, I decided to make this a #30daychallenge.
BA’S BEST #30DAYCHALLENGE Breakdown
I was super excited about this recipe at first. It only requires few ingredients with simple steps but look likes very promising result! I didn’t even read the reviews, which I should. Now I saw others have the same problem as I did. The cheese clumped badly even I whisked for a good 5 minutes. It just wouldn’t melt. I ended up having a bowl of butter water pasta. I think it’s probably because I used pre-grated Parmesan and put all the cheese altogether. If you want to try this recipe, make sure to grate your own cheese and put a small amount of cheese first.
This is one of the recipes that draws me into this challenge. I watched Claire making them on YouTube first before trying to make English muffins for the first time. The dough truly is very wet but as the recipe says the high hydration is key to forming those trademark nooks and crannies, so don’t attempt to add more flour than the recipe calls. It isn’t that scary to make English muffins at all. Watching the video also helps a lot!
I don’t know if I have told you I once worked as a baker in a hip coffee shop/bakery in DC. They have a wild section of scones, like raspberry rose or blackberry lavender. I am very bad at memorizing numbers, so I can’t recall the recipe that coffee shop uses. But this cream scone tastes exactly the same! Now I highly suspect they used the recipe from BA. Anyways, this recipe produces the ideal texture a sweet scone should have. Hard outside with sprinkled demerara sugar, but soft and fluffy inside. Highly recommend.
Every family has their own way of cooking scrambled egg. Your family scrambled egg recipe is the best in the world. This could be the second.
I usually don’t like American cookies as they’re way too sweet and oily for me. But there’s a period of time that I was obsessed with oatmeal raisin cookie, particularly the one sold in Whole Foods near my college. This recipe sadly does not produce the mildly sweet, soft and chewy oatmeal raisin cookie I loved.
I took a shortcut and used store bought sausage patty (because your girl still has a life to live 🤷). You cannot beat the combination with breakfast sausage, American cheese, fluffy egg, fresh chives, hot sauce, and honey. It’s a solid breakfast sandwich.
Banana bread is probably one thing I’ve baked the most. I always *accidentally* bought too many bananas and what else can you do with overripe bananas except making banana bread? Anyways, the texture is a little dense, could be the addition of mascarpone. When I make banana bread, I like to use minimum sugar & oil. So the natural sweetness and moistness from banana itself can shine. Here you can find 2 of my favorite recipes!
First of all, this is one of the most complicated recipes I’ve made for chicken noodle soup. So when you bought all the extra ingredients and spent several hours making your own broth, you kinda expect this chicken noodle soup better will blow your mind. Nope, my mind is still fine. The taste of the leek is so strong that I think ruin the entire soup. It really does not worth the extra work.
I rarely cook mussels at home, but I do like eating them when going to a French restaurant. This recipe does not produce those restaurant level mussels, but it ain’t bad for a homemade version.
I would be very happy if all the grilled cheese places out there have this soup. Enough said.
Hmmmm it’s really like parsley bread rather than garlic bread if you followed the recipe. The garlic taste is very mellow, which you don’t want if you are making GARLIC bread.
Okay, I suck at making omelets. I watched the BA’s YouTube video on making this omelet 3 times, but still didn’t produce a nearly perfect omelet. It tastes very good and luxurious (maybe I feel this way only because of its name). If you want to make something extra fancy for weekend breakfasts, make Ludo Lefebvre’s Omelet!
Not impressed. Go on.
It produces a rather hard & tough sandwich bread, but nothing majorly wrong. I wouldn’t make this again. If you want some good sandwich bread recipe, go to King Arthur Flour. Theirs are much better!
I managed to cut off some edges for the sake of taking a decent photo. You still get a good taste poached egg. Just might not be perfect.
You can’t go wrong with a classic cappers salad, especially when the tomatoes are peaking at your local farmer’s market. The perfect summer dish.
Not the best nor the worst buttermilk biscuit I’ve made & tasted. But it’s easy and quick to make. So if you decide to make some biscuits last minute, this recipe is not a bad choice!
Again, maybe not the best guacamole, but nor the worst.
I am literally drilling right now, just thinking about this. It’s the best strawberry shortcake recipe I’ve made so far. The texture of the shortcake is on point. Tender inside, crunchy outside and truly melt in your mouth. Making the strawberry two ways is also very smart. The macerated strawberry is fresh and crunchy while the compote is sweet and soft. I will 100% serve this if I have a brunch restaurant.
The slow cooking might be a little annoying, giving the fact making pasta at home usually equals to last minute meal. However, this slightly longer process produces a flavorful sauce that the grocery ones cannot compete with. We devour the pasta in less than 5 minutes. This is how good it is.
Again, I’m not a cookie fan. I’ve only had snickerdoodle once and it’s not good. But if that time the snickerdoodle I tested if this one, I probably would be more interested in snickerdoodles. This recipe produces a soft and pillowy cookie, with hints of cinnamon. What not to like about that?
Fun fact: I gave away a lot of the food I made for this challenge because obviously no one can consume this much food in 30 days. I gave away this sugar cookie to one of my neighbors who I didn’t get the chance to talk with. She actually found me on Instagram and DM me about how this sugar cookie is one of the best she has ever had. I guess either this sugar cookie is that good or she’s just being very nice (or both).
Brownie is one of my soft spots that I can’t control myself eating the whole pan. I specifically bought Scharffen Berg natural unsweetened cocoa powder as the recipe suggests. It’s no disappointment. So rich, gooey and satisfying. Just like what a good brownie should be. Luckily I got a chance to participate at Book Larder’s charity bake sale, so I can give away the brownies with just one for myself (or I really will eat the whole pan with a spoon).
This is another item I baked for the Book Larder’s charity bake sale. I kept several spare ones for our visiting friends. One of our friends loves the cookie so much that she keeps snacking on them even we just finished a big dinner.
Nope. Nope. Nope. Not even close to the store-bought ones (don’t judge me, you know those are the best rice pudding).
A good homemade lemonade reminds you of childhood summers. Hot weather, shining sun, running kids, sweating, but happy. Then choking on some homemade lemonade that’s just sweet enough, super refreshing, with pure lemon juice and real cane sugar. I think about all of that on my first sip.
One of those moderate pancake recipes that won’t make you mad about wasting all the ingredients, but also won’t make you feel like you will make it again.
Another thing I rarely make at home even though I know everyone said homemade ones are 10 times better than the store bought ones. I just don’t care about hummus that much before the other 10000 items I should make my own. Plus when I lived in DC, I loved the Perfect Pita Hummus you can get at Whole Foods. And then I moved here. And then I can’t find a substitute. So until I found one, I will keep making this homemade one (yes it tastes better than the store bought ones here, sigh).
Someone please tell me how popular Parker House Roll once was, because I’m pretty sure it’s not popular anymore as I cannot find one bakery make them. So, I don’t know what a real Parker House Roll suppose to taste like, but this one tastes pretty decent as bread rolls.
I have to admit I have not tasted the cake. I baked it for Book Larder’s charity bake sale and I ’m pretty sure no one will buy a cake with one bite missing. I heard my carrot cake was sold for $40! So I really hope this recipe is the best carrot cake recipe and whoever was so kind to buy a whole cake for bake sale enjoyed it.
Five-Star (AKA if you don’t make you’re missing out) Recipes:
One-Star (AKA don’t waste your ingredients) Recipes:
Alright, I can’t believe I have done it! Bon Appetit, if you’re reading this, please name me one of your loyalest readers. If you want invite me to your New York office, I’ll gracefully accept (and passed out because of excitement on my own). I hope you find this challenge entertaining and hopefully helpful for picking BA’s Best Recipes.
I’m already planning to do another crazier and more exciting challenge. So follow me on Instagram, Bookmark HerBakingLab and stay tuned! Xoxo