A 3-minute video taught me more than years reading cookbooks.

I blog about nonprofit communications and, occasionally, cooking.

I love to cook but feel like a perpetual amateur. When checking cookbooks out of the library, I gravitate to the “basics.” I feel like a passable cook – as measured by whether my family eats what I cook and with what comments. In the kitchen there’s still a lot to learn.

Case in point: I’ve been making biscuits for years and they came out flat every time. Until I watched a 3-minute video. A new cookbook (Molly Baz’s new Cook This Book) comes with links to short videos demonstrating techniques. One is as the author calls it, Biscuit Stacking.

After the dough is in a rectangle, it’s cut into quarters. And then stacked, 1 on top of the other. Talk about thinking outside the box! Tallest, flakiest biscuits I ever made.

Please don’t ask the question – how did I never think of this before? ‘Fold your dough like a business letter before it goes in an envelope’ is a direct quote from many – many, many – recipes. One I skipped over every other time I made biscuits.

I didn’t really understand all those cookbook descriptions of folding and rolling, or it seemed too hard or like too much trouble, so I skipped it. Now that I have seen the video on stacking, I might even try folding some day.

This three-minute video just made me a way better biscuit baker. 

It’s a case study in communications: a little video can go a long way. 

Following Molly Baz’s example, what can we show people that would open their eyes to our work or mission? The rest is just being yourself (recognizing that being yourself on camera is whole other project, but still).