Hi, nice to meet you! My name is Sally and I’m that girl that brings a full batch of cookies into the office on Monday mornings because A) Cookies make everything better (ESPECIALLY FUNFETTI SUGAR COOKIES LIKE I BROUGHT THIS MORNING) & B) I just really love to bake but don’t want to eat it all. My co-workers are excellent test subjects for my baking experiments. I’ve learned that there’s a huge difference between following a recipe & actually understanding what steps are going into the recipe. That’s when the switch flips, when you start to think about the process instead of just following the words on the page. Today I’d like to share some basic tips I’ve picked up that I hope will help you in your baking endeavors.
- Measure everything beforehand. You guys. I recently started doing this and it makes life SOOOO much easier. So much easier. Raise your hand if you’ve ever gone through a recipe only to realize that you’re missing an ingredient or that your butter needs to be melted? Ah yes, I see all of your hands are raised. Also, just for plain convenience, it’s soo much easier to have everything ready before you start.
- Use room temperature butter & eggs for cookies and cakes. Set your butter & eggs out for an hour or so before you start baking so they can thaw. Room temperature butter & eggs cream into your dough much smoother than when you just take them out of the fridge, and it will make your cookies or cakes that much more chewy & unison in texture. Raise your hand if you’ve ever softened butter in the microwave? Ah yes, all of your hands are raised (including mine). Microwaved butter will make your baking more oily instead of fluffy.
- Refrigerate your cookie dough before putting it in the oven. This is something that I learned very recently, and it’s a miracle-worker. Chilling.. A) helps dryer/flakier dough stick together during the baking process B) helps the dough spread less during baking, and C) brings out the flavor of your cookies.
- There’s a difference between a Wet Measuring Cup & Dry Measuring Cups. This seems super simple, but I didn’t know for so long that there was a difference! I thought they were just different ways of measuring the same thing. A wet measuring cup allows for a more precise measurement of liquids, which would otherwise spill over with regular measuring cups.
Short & sweet! I wish I had more tips, but I’m really just getting started learning how to bake. Any tips you’ve picked up along the way? Lemme know!