Baking is one of my favourite activities and I look forward to the cosy Sunday afternoons spent in the kitchen, creating delicious goodies. Baking with your family and friends is an amazing way to make lasting memories. Plus, nothing compares to the delightful taste of a freshly-baked cake or pastry! I’m always looking forward to my next baking session. Baking is a passion of mine that I wish I could indulge in more, even if it’s just making muffins for my co-workers.
However, while some people find baking an enjoyable way to spend a few hours, others find it incredibly stressful! However, sometimes baking isn’t just an enjoyable activity, it’s an exact science! Getting the ingredient amounts and temperature just right is crucial for a successful bake – and that’s where helpful tips come in handy. Having these up your sleeve can make all the difference between mediocrity or perfection in the kitchen!
These nine baking tips will make your baking experience so much smoother and help you elevate your abilities. You won’t just be able to bake a cake, but get to savor the sweet results of your hard work too!
9 must-known baking tips to level up your cakes & bakes
Baking is a great way to express your creativity and indulge in some delicious treats. Whether you’re an experienced baker or a complete novice, there are some tips and tricks that can help you level up your baking game. From prepping your ingredients to finding the right baking tools, these baking tips will help you take your cakes and bakes to the next level. So let’s get started!
How to Stop Cheesecake from Cracking.
When baking a cheesecake, one of the main causes of cracking is the rapid and intense heat. To help prevent cracking, use a water bath or bain-marie when baking the cheesecake. This will provide a more gentle heat and help the cheesecake cook more evenly.
How to know your baking yeast is fresh.
Yeast needs to be alive or active when you use it, or your whole bake will be ruined. To test whether yeast is active, combine it with the amount of warm water and add a small amount of sugar. If the yeast is active, it will begin to bubble within about 10 minutes. If there’s no bubbles, it means the yeast is dead and should not be used.
Great pastries need cold ingredients.
To ensure great pastries, it is important to use cold ingredients such as cold butter, cold cream, and cold milk. These ingredients should be kept in the refrigerator until use. Additionally, it is important to avoid overworking the dough when preparing pastries, as this can make them tough. Finally, keeping the kitchen cool while baking can help ensure the best results.
How to perfect a flaky pie crust.
For a flakier pie crust, substitute one teaspoon of cold vinegar for a teaspoon of ice water. This helps prevent the release of fat-moisture and keeps the flour in the pie crust from becoming soggy, while also activating the gluten, resulting in a tough pie crust.
How to tell if your baking powder is fresh.
Baking powder is a raising agent that helps your bakes rise by releasing gas bubbles as part of a chemical reaction. However baking powder can go stale thus reducing its rising power. Pour ¼ cup of hot tap water over ½ teaspoon of baking powder – if the powder bubbles it’s still fresh. If not, it’s time to replace it.
How to melt chocolate without seizing.
Melting chocolate is easier than you think. Break the chocolate into small pieces, seal in a water-proof bag, and then drop into a bowl of hot water. Alternatively, use a microwave in a bowl, stirring every 15 seconds to prevent burning. Just ensure that the chocolate stays clear of water as this will cause it to go lumpy.
How to prevent sticky dough.
If your dough is sticky when you’re trying to roll it out, try using a marble slab like the professionals. Alternatively, use a large sheet of waxed paper that is anchored to your workspace to prevent slipping. To anchor the waxed paper, simply moisten the underside which will help it “stick” to your benchtop.
How to get fluffier egg whites.
Fluffy, whipped egg whites add lightness to your baking. The more air the eggs contain after whisking, the better the end result in your baking. When whisking your eggs, never tap the bowl, as this will cause the eggs to release the air trapped during the whisking process.
How to avoid sinking ingredients.
If you don’t want your choc chips, nuts or fruits to sink to the bottom when baking, simply dust them lightly with flour before adding them to the batter. Adding flour helps absorb some of the moisture that these ingredients release during baking which keeps them from sinking.
More Quick Tips
- Before you begin baking, make sure you read the entire recipe and have all the ingredients and tools required to carry out the recipe. That way, you’ll avoid last-minute stress!
- Make sure to preheat your oven before you start adding ingredients together for perfect results.
- Precision is key! Make sure to use a measuring cup or scale to guarantee accuracy in your ingredients.
- Always choose the right type of tray for the recipe and make sure to grease it if need be. This is an important step that can help you in achieving maximum results from your culinary adventure!
- Ensure that you follow the instructions correctly and in sequence to achieve the desired results.
- Resist the temptation to overmix your batter or dough as this can drastically change the final texture and flavour of the end product.
- Pay close attention to the baking time as ovens may not always provide the same temperature and over-baking can ruin all your efforts.
Empower yourself in the kitchen with these simple baking tips and churn out mouth-watering treats that everyone in your family will savour! Soon enough, you’ll be able to upgrade your bakes with ease.