Posts by PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel
The Author

About PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, three dogs, and really good food!

Woman rolling pastry on large table.

Live, learn, and bake

The newly renamed King Arthur Baking Company remains devoted to education

Three types of cocoa

Dutch-process vs. natural cocoa

Can you substitute one for the other?

Bread in cloth, plastic, and foil wrappings

The best way to store yeast bread

How to keep the fresh in "fresh-baked"

chocolate chip cookies on a baking sheet

"Do I really have to scrape my mixing bowl?"

Yes — and here's why.

10 tips for new sourdough bakers

10 tips for new sourdough bakers

It's a confusing world out there, isn't it?

Lettuce growing in a garden

Grow a kitchen garden

our A to Z guide to baking-friendly plants

Mozzarella and jack cheeses beside baked pizza.

The best cheese for pizza

Branching out from mozzarella

Toast spread with strawberry jam.

Buttered toast and jam

A quick and simple path to comfort

Open bags of flour on table

Can I bake with out of date flour?

Maybe yes, maybe no; here's how to decide

Almost empty jar of yeast

How to bake bread using less yeast

Smart ways to tackle the yeast shortage

Imprinted drop cookies and tools

Drop cookies: beyond the fork

How to flatten cookie dough with flair

Loaves of hot bread in pans.

Baking bread when flour is scarce

How to use whatever type of flour you have

Three buttered sourdough crumpets on a plate.

Sourdough Crumpets

The fastest, easiest, tastiest way ever to use discard starter


How to make a simple hearth bread

Crusty, chewy — and easily done

Two bowls of brown sugar, light and dark

"What can I substitute for brown sugar?"

Some straightforward advice

Naturally leavened sourdough bread made with yeast water in place of standard sourdough starter, sliced open and set on a wooden table.

Baking bread with a yeast water starter

Can fruit successfully stand in for flour?

Pizza being topped with sauce, four bowls of sauce: pesto, romesco, white, and pink vodka.

Tips for saucing your favorite pizza

Hint: Think beyond tomato

Bags of Swerve sugar replacement, granulated sugar, and Truvia Cane Sugar Blend, all pictured with chocolate chip cookies.

Sugar alternatives for baking

Fewer calories, but do they yield great results?

Brown butter melted in a skillet surrounded by pound cake and shortbread wedges.

Brown butter

How to make your buttery baked goods even better

Our 2020 Recipe of the Year!

Introducing our 2020 Recipe of the Year

Crispy Cheesy Pan Pizza is a cut above

Two loaves of Christmas Stollen, sliced on plates on a table.

Stollen pleasure

Fresh-made Christmas Stollen is the real deal

Gingerbread cake plain, made into apple upside-down cake, and gingerbread cupcakes.

Gingerbread cake

Still tasty after all these years

Golden soft dinner rolls in a bowl, one on a bread plate.

Amish Dinner Rolls

The soft potato rolls everyone loves