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Tips and Tricks of the (Baking) Trade

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Some of my most basic baking essentials are reusable chopsticks, paper plates and a squirt bottle. 

Chopsticks–the rounded end (the top is more square) is perfect for levelling off measuring cups & spoons.  Most of my knives don’t have a straight edge and I really like using my reusable plastic chopsticks for this. They’re also handy for stirring coffee. :)

Paper plates–when measuring flour, cornmeal, sugar and powdered sugar, etc–I place my measuring cup on a single paper plate, pour the ingredient into the cup until heaped up, then level it off with a chopstick and let the extra fall onto the plate.  After dumping the ingredient into the sifter or mixing bowl, I fold the plate and pour the extra back into the sack or into my measuring cup for the next measure of that ingredient.  This is particularly useful for flour, since pouring it into the cup does not compact it the way dipping the cup into the sack does.  Compacted flour can make your recipe too dry in some cases, especially with cakes.

Squirt bottle designated for water only–I use this on every cake I bake.  Cakes tend to get dry around the edges and it’s very easy to fix by just squirting water directly onto the edges.  I NEVER have a dry cake and get lots of compliments on it.  Professional bakers use a simple syrup (sugar cooked with water) that they dab onto the cake with a pastry brush, but the water bottle method is so much easier and does not add needless calories or change the flavor of the cake at all.  Just makes it more moist.

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About Veronica

I have a kitchen addiction and love to collect & share recipes. My passion is baking but I love to cook as well. The only thing I don't like to do in the kitchen is wash dishes, but my husband generally does them for me in exchange for his dinner.

4 responses »

  1. Your tips are great. You really are a fabulous resource

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  2. I never would have guessed about this moist cake trick.

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  3. Sorry for being incredibly slow: do you squirt water before frosting or before baking? If before frosting, won’t it be difficult to spread the frosting?

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