We could all use a little help when it comes to baking. I mean, there’s a reason the best bakers have studied the art for years and that there’s even baking and pastry schools to begin with. But lucky for you, we have the Internet, and top-of-the-line pastry chefs are sharing their secrets for free online to help you become the best baker in your neighborhood. Adding these five simple tips will make you see a change in your baking, and you’ll even be able to taste the difference! Doing these five things will make baking easier and more efficient, and you’ll wonder why you never thought to do them before.
Measure Ingredients By Weight, Not Volume
You may or may not do this already, but if you live in America, chances are you probably don’t. But don’t worry, that’s not your fault, it’s the education system’s for not teaching us the metric system, and our government for not adopting the world-wide system. But, if you bake measuring your ingredients by their weight, and not their volume, you will have more accurate baking with consistent results. Purchasing a food scale can help you with this, and once you start using it, you’ll see why professional bakers never measure by volume.
Get an Oven Thermometer
You always want to make sure you’re baking at the proper temperature; it’s the key to your pastries coming out as best as they can. It’s one thing to assemble them, but the real magic happens in the oven. That’s why you should invest in an oven thermometer to hang off a rack in your oven for precise temperature, since ovens are almost never accurate, causing serious problems for your baked goods.
Keep Your Cakes Moist With a Soaker Bottle
A pro-tip for keeping large sheet or round cakes moist is to give them a shower of simple syrup or booze by using a squirt bottle with multiple nozzles, or showerlike lids, to evenly soak the cake. Doing this ensures your cake will stay moist and won’t dry out after you cut it, so you never have to deal with a dried out cake ever again.
Tap and Spin Your Cake Pan After Pouring in Batter
If you hate those pesky air bubbles that can sometimes happen when baking a cake, the easiest way to get rid of them, and fix other problems, is to give your pan several taps and quickly spinning it once you pour the batter into it. Doing this makes the batter rise up the sides a bit, getting rid of any air bubbles while helping the sides of the cake climb upwards, and not dome.
Know Your Ratios
The best pastry chefs will tell you that they hardly ever memorize recipes, but instead, they bake from ratios. Knowing the ratios to essential pastries, such as pound cake, can help you make them faster, create new variations, and make it easier all without having to look at a recipe. Learning a few key ratios can also help you scale recipes so much easier so that you can take a recipe that serves your family and quickly make it serve 50 people or more.