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I consider myself pretty savvy when it comes to the amount of time I’ve been surfing the net in my life thus far. From the dark days of Tumblr to the discovery of Reddit, and then finding screenshots of posts from Tumblr on both Reddit and Pinterest, I’ve seen a lot of cooking advice among the advice at large online.

Now, we all know that any advice given online is to be taken with a grain of salt, as you never know when someone is BSing you, or are just plain wrong. But today for you, I’ve got two Tumblr cooking hacks that got it right. So right, in fact, I’ll be using them both from here on out. 

The First Tumblr screenshot posted to Pinterest I had actually seen the original post in my time on Tumblr, but never gave it any thought. It detailed how to make “Norwegian Christmas Butter Squares”, which were supposed to have all the appeal of a commercial sugar cookie, but in deliciously soft, chewy bar form. As a known sugar cookie lover, I pinned it to my board, and let it sit awhile. Then, when the holidays started to roll around, I decided we didn’t have a sugar cookie in our lineup this year, so I was going to fill that void with the then untested recipe from Tumblr. 

The recipe was as follows: 

Thankfully I had all the ingredients on hand, and I got to work on them pretty quickly. I didn’t have raw sugar for dusting, so I did as the post suggested, and just put regular sugar on top and shook the pan around like you’re “panning for gold”, and tossed the excess sugar. After a stint in the oven, the cookies came out, looking beautiful. I let them cool for a bit, and when the time came, I cut them up and took a tentative bite. Dear reader, these cookies are out of this world delicious. So delicious in fact, I had to stop myself from eating 5 or 6 of them every time I opened the Tupperware which contained them. 

I wasn’t the only one to give these butter squares rave reviews though, oh no. My whole family loved them. So now I’ve added them to our yearly Christmas cookie lineup, and I plan on making them for spring/summer as well, or really, whenever I’m craving the perfect sugar cookie. 

Making a Better Cake

Feeling pretty confident in Tumblr’s cooking/baking capabilities, I decided to try another I had found on Pinterest more recently, a hack from a “champion state baker” on how to make a boxed cake mix taste exactly like it’s from a bakery. Now, I had been craving cake for almost two weeks at the point in which I found that post, so I decided I wanted to try it immediately (impulse control goes down when I’m hungry.) I brought out a box of Betty Crocker vanilla cake mix, and followed the instructions of the post. 

I was quite skeptical, especially about adding the dash of almond extract (as I’m usually not a big fan of almonds), but I went ahead and did it anyway. If nothing else, I had a second box of cake mix I could bake as usual. I decided to make a double layer cake (feeling fancy) and popped the two cake tins in the oven. For once in my life, I cooked them to perfection and didn’t need to leave them in the oven for an additional 15 minutes because they were underbaked. 

I went ahead and combined/frosted my cake (I’m admittedly not a huge frosting person, there’s a point at which it gets too sweet for me) and cut myself a huge slice because as I said, I’d been craving cake for a while. Y’all. I will only be making boxed cakes this way from now on. Sweet but not too sweet, perfectly moist (and still moist even the next day) and you can taste4 the hint of almond extract in the best way where it doesn’t taste like plain vanilla cake, it tastes enhanced somehow. 

Even my mom, who is not a cake person like I am, said that it was absolutely delicious. So if even the non-cake people among us love it, it’s safe to say this baking swap is 100000% worth trying. Yes, it’s a lot of butter, but (in my opinion)  if you’re going to make a cake, go all out. Make the cake of your dreams, the cake you’re craving. 

So, if you’re ever skeptical about baking or cooking advice you find online, if it seems at least a little bit legit (like how others had commented on these posts that they’ve tried and it works) go for it! Just have a backup plan just in case it doesn’t turn out to your liking, that way nobody is going hungry because someone on the internet lied about a cooking/baking hack.

By Hannah

Lover of all things geeky.

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