Not everyone is born a great baker. It can take practice, good preparation techniques and plenty of instruction-reading. While some people are blessed with the ability to create a perfect cake every time, for others it’s not so easy. If you’ve got a special occasion coming up, or you’re just in the mood to bake a delicious cake for your family, we’ve listed some top baking tips for cakes below. It is a great way to show appreciation to the people you care about.
Use a tried and trusted recipe
Recipe book usage has slowly been on the decline as technology takes over. Many of us use Google to look for a recipe and don’t bother to check whether it’s been tried and tested. To avoid disappointment, it’s always best to use a recipe that is known to work, from a reliable source. If all else fails, ask a family member for a recipe book that they use on a regular basis.
Always use the right cake tin
Every recipe has a specified cake tin size and it’s not just because that’s all they had. Certain tin sizes are perfect for certain recipes, but not for all. Before you start baking, check the recipe for the required tin size. If you don’t have it, adjust one you do have to suit or alter the recipe. Ensure you also line it well with either parchment paper or a good smear of butter.
Measure, measure, measure
If you’re not confident in the kitchen, you need to follow the recipe with weights and measurements. Use a kitchen scale to measure butter, and opt for measuring jugs, spoons, and cups rather than dinnerware. Remember, liquid ingredients are weighed and measured differently to dry ingredients. It also helps to never mix imperial measurements with metric measurements. Use either one or the other.
Preheat the oven
The first step in most recipe books is to preheat your oven. Before you go ahead with putting the cake mixture together, turn the oven on to the correct temperature. Only put the cake in once it reaches this temperature as this can affect how well it rises.
Organize your trays
Most people move their oven trays around to ensure they can fit everything in at once, but with cakes, they don’t like to share. Put the oven tray in the center of the oven and keep the door closed until you near the end of the cooking time. This enables the cake to cook properly and evenly.
Ensure your ingredients are at the right temperature
If you’ve just grabbed eggs directly from your fridge and intend on cracking them straight into the bowl, stop. Eggs should be brought to room temperature first, otherwise, the mixture will not emulsify correctly. Read the recipe before you go ahead and bake, and get out any ingredients that are temperature-sensitive.
Baking can almost be considered an art, but the recipe for success is simply by following instructions. You can create a delicious, moist and picture-perfect cake simply by ensuring you don’t take any shortcuts, or substitute any ingredients. Happy baking!