Baking is cooking food in your oven using dry heat. With a little practice anyone can learn to bake. Following a recipe closely is the best way to make tasty baked goods. The good news is, you will also save money!
With just a few tools baking can be easy. Here is some basic cooking equipment you will need:
- a mixing bowl
- a wooden spoon
- rolling pin
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- an electric mixer (hand or stand)
- some baking sheets and pans
Tips for successful baking
Baking is a little bit like doing a science project in the kitchen. All kinds of fun reactions are taking place. Most baked goods have these types of ingredients:
- flour, sugar, eggs
- fat (like butter or oil)
- a moistener (like water or milk)
- leaveners that makes food rise (like baking soda, baking powder, or yeast)
Follow these steps when you are baking
- Read the recipe. Be sure you have the time, ingredients, and tools you will need.
- Follow the recipe closely. Add ingredients in order.
- Gather equipment and ingredients before you start. Gather ingredients, and the cooking tools that you will need.
- Use correct measuring tools:
- Use dry measuring cups for dry ingredients such as flour, sugar, cocoa, brown sugar, cornmeal, etc.
- Use measuring spoons to measure teaspoons and tablespoons.
- Use a liquid measuring cup for liquids such as water, oil, milk, honey, or corn syrup.
- Check oven. Preheat the oven to the temperature that the recipe directs. This may take a few minutes. Place the item in the center of the oven so that it will cook evenly. Pans should not touch each other or the sides of the oven.
- Do not open the oven door during baking. Use the oven light and window to see how things are going. When the product is finished baking, remove the pan(s) carefully from the oven using oven mitts or hot pads.
Benefits of baking
Baking at home gives you the power to control exactly what goes into your cookies, cakes, or breads. You can choose whole grain flours or heart healthy fats to make your home baked goods. This will make them more nutritious than those you can buy in the store. Buying the ingredients for a baked item is often much cheaper than buying baked items at the grocery store. And who doesn’t love the smell of fresh baked cookies?
Best foods to bake
Remember that it is not only sweets and breads that can be baked. Chicken, fish, meats, vegetables, casseroles, even fruits can also be baked.