A lot of us have not been taught how to bake. All we can do is prepare basic meals, but cannot take things as far as a hearty cake or scrumptious muffins. You might be one of those people who have a baking set that has been lying around and you have been staring at it wearily, wondering what to bake. You have no idea what the basics of baking are, you don’t know where to start. But thanks to TV shows like Bake Off, you feel the urge to become a pastry chef… The good news is – you can! We have investigated a little and this is what the professionals have to say:
1. Baking is about precision.
This means that you need to have a recipe beforehand. Work from this recipe, read it over and over again. A good baking recipe book is a great investment to start with. The right measuring tools, e.g. a baking set and measuring equipment, will make things easier as well, so you’re not guessing quantities.
2. Have all ingredients laid out beforehand
Make sure you have bought all ingredients. One missing ingredient can sabotage the whole operation. The cake might not rise, or it may lack in sugar.
The true baker has foresight.
Laying ingredients out beforehand also ensures that they are at room temperature by the time you bake. For example, butter or eggs straight out of the fridge will be cumbersome to work with. Take these out in advance.
3. Be methodical in everything you do
Don’t just dump all the ingredients into the bowl and mix. Often there’s a formula, for example: dry ingredients first, and wet ingredients separately. Another thing you want to do is crack eggs in a separate bowl. Eggs are finicky, you wouldn’t want to take chances with them like that.
Set a timer once things are in the oven. Life can get very distracting. One minute you’ve just put your muffins into the oven, the next minute you’re embroiled in a riveting episode of Vampire Diaries, and the next thing you know there’s a whiff of something burning! So, be smart and use a timer.
4. Have fun!
What I mean is be creative, but only with the finished product. Add some sparkle and colour to whatever you have baked. Invest in some extra accessories to beautify your creations. Remember, people eat with their eyes first, so entice them a little. Boring vanilla muffins can go from zero to hero, with the addition of some icing and colourful sprinkles (hundreds and thousands of them).