Top Chef Contestant Malika Ameen’s Baking Tips

Malika Ameen might be best known for her stint as a contestant on season one of Top Chef: Just Desserts, but if that’s what comes to your mind, then you haven’t tasted her cookies.

After voluntarily leaving the reality TV show, Ameen opened her Internet-based business ByMDesserts.

“I went back and took all my greatest cookies,” she says. As a pastry chef who worked in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, Ameen had clients who had been calling her, begging her to ship their favorites. “I’ve cooked in so many places, this business let me cater to clients from all over.”

It also means the single mom of three kids has more control over her schedule. “On the Internet I didn’t have to worry about the front of the house,” she says, and having put in the grueling hours required of a chef at Chateau Marmont and as co-owner of Aigre Doux, perhaps the most important part of her new venture, “I can be home for dinner with my kids.”

Malika’s Holiday Baking Tips

  • If you are doubling or tripling recipes, make sure you do the math accurately before proceeding with the recipe
  • Check to see that all your spices, baking powder and baking soda are fresh for best flavor and results
  • Read through the entire recipe before starting. That will save you from surprises like, “refrigerate overnight”
  • Have all your ingredients prepped before starting
  • Plan ahead and remember that most baking recipes require ingredients to be at room temperature, which helps aid in texture and volume of the final product
  • Most importantly have fun!!!

Here’s a great holiday cookie recipe from Ameen: Orange Pecan Biscotti with Cardamom Scented Sugar

And if you want to win a dozen ByMDesserts cookies, “Like” us on Facebook before Tuesday and you’ll automatically be entered to win. (And if you comment on this article or the Facebook post about the giveaway, you double your chances to win!)