Baking Measuring Do’s and Don’ts
Have you ever went to bake a batch of cookies or goodies and pull them out of the oven to find they are not good. Well, it might not have anything to do with the temperature, the time, nor the recipe. You will find that any good baker has a list of do’s and don’ts and I am here to help share the insider secrets with you.
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Unlike some recipes, any baking recipe requires precise measurements. You can’t wing it like you would a casserole dish or a pasta dish. Having accurately measured ingredients is what can make or break your baked good. So before you whip up your next bread, cake, pie, or cookies, read over this list!
If you are a seasoned baker you might like looking over the list for a refresher. If you are new to baking you might really find these do’s and don’ts helpful. When I first began baking, it was a lot of trial and error. Over time, I began seeing quality baked goods over and again instead of flops.
Secrets to Baking Measuring The Correct Way
Make sure to follow your recipe precisely. Don’t improvise or substitute ingredients if you are not a seasoned baker. These precise measurements can be what makes your baked good a homerun or a strike out.
Using proper measuring cups and spoons is a must. Don’t just grab a coffee mug and guess if that is the correct amount of sugar. Don’t try to emulate the chefs you see on television by adding a dash of this and a sprinkle of that. The wrong measurements can leave your baked goods less than perfect.
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Sifted Not Sifted
If a recipe calls for sifted flour, you must sift it. This can alter your cookies or cake from being light and fluffy to dense and heavy.
Type of Flours
If your recipe calls for cake flour, you need to use cake flour. Not all types of flours are the same. If your recipe calls for all-purpose and you grab whole wheat flour and use that for your bread, you might have a very heavy and dense loaf of bread. Using the correct flours is a must.
When you go to measure oil, water, or any other liquid your recipe calls for, set the measuring cup on the counter. It needs to be a level surface so the measurement is precise. If you hold your cup when you go to pour, you might find it over or under filled it. The wrong amount of liquid can leave your baked goods dry or too wet. This can result in a burned or gooey product.
Don’t take your measuring cup and scoop it into your bag or canister to get the flour. I recommend getting a spoon and putting it into the cup and then level it off. If you just scoop into a canister it will pack the flour, which is what you don’t want.
If you use a scale to measure out ingredients, make sure to zero out your scale after placing a bowl or plate to measure your ingredients. This way the weight of your bowl or plate isn’t added to the weight of your ingredients.
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When a recipe calls for brown sugar, it is standard to pack it. Scoop it in and then use a spoon or the palm of your hand to pack it into the cup. Only do this for brown sugar though.
Softened VS Melted Butter
If a recipe calls for softened butter, do not melt the butter to make it soft. It can change the consistency of your baked goods. For example, if you are making sugar cookies and you use melted butter, it can make the dough more sticky and soft and your finished product will be a flat cookie.
Room Temperature Ingredients
When a recipe says to have room temperature eggs or butter you need to follow those instructions. Just like with the butter or margarine, it can change the consistency or cause the baking process to be different.
If your recipes calls to coat the pan with butter or cooking spray, please don’t skip this. If you don’t coat the pan, your food will more than likely become stuck and will look like something from the twilight zone.
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These are all very simple instructions. The biggest thing to remember is using the proper measuring cups and spoons and following directions. If you take on those steps you will begin to see your baked goods come out like you had hoped and your family has a delicious treat to sink their teeth into.