Our Top Baking Tips
- If you’re making cakes and you find that your mix shrinks from the sides, you’re overworking it. Once mixtures are combined you don’t really need to overbeat them, unless a recipe states to do so.
- You wouldn’t believe how much can go wrong just because ingredients have been weighed incorrectly. If you’re just a little bit out it can have a catastrophic effect on flavour and consistency, yet it’s one of the easiest things to get right. Just concentrate at the start because any errors will only be amplified going forward!
- Be careful with Baking Powder…Particularly, when adding too much, you’ll find yourself with something that rises and falls quickly, and will end up drying out the cake. It’s a fantastic ingredient, but it needs to be treated with respect!
- A high fat content is essential in the butter or spread you use. I always aim at over 75%. The problem with lower fat spreads and butters is they have a higher water content. When it evaporates it causes layers bind together in your mix. In the UK we tend to always have high fat content so it’s not usually a problem, but it’s always worth checking your ingredients.
- When blind baking, instead of buying ceramic beans you can simply use rice or lentils
- Use caster sugar in cakes rather than granulated. Speckled tops on cakes are usually caused by granulated sugar that has not properly dissolved in the mixture
- If you add sugar too quickly to egg whites when making meringues they will weep on baking. The same if you add too much at once.
- To avoid meringues sticking to the paper, ensure your oven isn’t too hot, your whites are whisked sufficiently and the paper you have used is oiled.
- I dislike wire rack marks on the top of my cakes, therefore cover the rack with a tea towel before tipping the cake out onto it.