Learn to Improve Your Baking Skills

Learn to Improve Your Baking Skills

Calibrate Your Oven 

Always calibrate your oven. The problem here is that the temperature in the oven may not actually be what you set it to. If you set your oven to 350°F, but it only heats up to 320°F, or maybe 380°F, then your recipe won't be successful.

Repairing an oven can be a daunting task, but the solution is to buy an inexpensive oven thermometer. Set the oven to 350°F, and check the thermometer. If different, you can adjust accordingly.

Use A Light-colored Pan

Always use a light-colored pan. The reason is that darker pans absorb more heat than lighter pans, which can actually cause the bottom of your cake or cookie to burn. The assumption is that recipes are written and tested for light-colored pans. If you only have the darker ones, you can lower the heat or adjust the cooking time.

Understanding How Over-mixing Affects Gluten

Dough and batter are made of flour, which contains gluten, and the more you stir, beat, knead, etc., the harder and more elastic the gluten becomes. For pizza dough, you probably want that, but for pie dough, not so much.

The good news is that your recipe should give you some kind of guidance on how much to mix the dough, when, how hard to do it, so follow the recipe and see how over-mixing affects gluten.

Avoid Unreasonable Changes

Avoiding unnecessary changes is another way of saying "follow the recipe." For example: Don't just add a cup of blueberries to a plain banana bread recipe. That's not to say blueberry banana bread isn't delicious. It could be. But given how easy it is to find a recipe for blueberry banana bread, you're better off using that than trying to make your own.

Keep the Oven Closed 

Be sure to keep the oven closed. It's understandable that you'd be tempted to see what's going on inside, but it's not a good idea. If you're baking a cake, the influx of air, or even the vibration of the oven door, can cause the cake to fall. Not to mention, you're taking all the heat away, which obviously affects the bake.

Some cooks recommend rotating the cookie pan halfway through cooking, but the benefits you gain aren't worth the heat lost. So keep it closed.

If you want to learn more about how to improve your baking skills, please feel free to leave a reply in the below comment area or email us directly at Support@Kitchenin.com.

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