Useful baKING TIPS:
For Best Tasting Results always use fresh ingredients. The more quality products you put into your baked goods, the better quality end result.
“Everything in its place” BEFORE beginning to mix. Chefs call this “Mise en place”
1) Review the recipe, being sure you understand the ingredients and directions.
2) Measure all ingredients.
2) Place ingredients in “groupings” of how they will be mixed (i.e. dry, wet, eggs, etc.)
5) Review the recipe, placing ingredients in the order the recipe calls for.
6) Now…BEGIN MIXING
Follow the order given in each recipe for the proper mixing technique.
The great timing question: How do I know when it’s done??
All baking times are approx. baking times. So, just setting the timer for 30 minutes because that’s what the recipe say, does not guantee a fully baked product. Each oven differs slightly (sometimes by a lot!) in temperature. Convection ovens will take less time (by up to 1/3 of baking time). Another variable is in the size of the pan called for. For example, if the recipe calls for a 10″ bundt pan and you use a 9″ pan, your batter will be deeper, needing more time to bake and vice versa.
Here’s some of my tips for testing for doneness:
1) “Smell of doneness”, Yep – really, a baked product actually begins to smell like it’s end product when it is approaching doneness. This method takes a LOT of practice!
2) Touching the center for firmness. When lightly pressed, it should be firm and spring back not “wet” in center. Even this varies: I like my cookies not quite set int he center, you may like yours set. A cake must be set in the center or it will fall.
3) Cakes will slightly pull away from the sides of the pan when they are done.
4) The almost fool-proof way of sticking a toothpick in the center. The toothpick should come out clean and not wet and sticky with batter.