You always want to make sure that you bake fantastic cookies and cupcakes. However, what practical tips can you start taking on board to ensure that you provide consistent rules each time? Baking well is an art that takes time and practice, so be prepared to add both of these ingredients to every recipe that you follow.
Use the Best Ingredients
Excellent baking all starts with the ingredients that you use. The better the elements, the more exceptional the cookies and cakes will taste, and the easier they should work.
For example, if a recipe says to use margarine, then use margarine and not lard. Substitutions can affect how cookies and cakes look (and turn out).
To ensure you use the best ingredients, you must always purchase what the recipe requires. If there is something that you are missing, wait to bake until you have the item, as it will most likely be a key ingredient and not something you can do without.
Follow the Recipe
This can sound simple, yet how often do you do it? If you have baked with a recipe before, it can be highly tempting to avoid or skim over specific steps in the recipe – however, is this wise? The actions and processes within each recipe have been put there for a reason.
If you gloss over something, it may affect how your mix turns out. This will ultimately affect how cookies and cakes look and taste. Read the recipe beforehand, and then follow it precisely to ensure your cakes and cookies look as good as the ones in the recipe book.
Use the Correct Casings and Tins
The tins and casings you use when baking matter. For example, when baking cookies, you will want to ensure that you bake them on a flat tray or sheet. If you bake them on a sheet with raised edges or sides, you may find they do not brown or cook as evenly as you wanted them to.
If you are baking cupcakes, you also want to be sure that you use deep enough tins. Using muffin tins for cupcake cases can give you better results than if you were to use a small cupcake tin, as these might end up being too small to frost and decorate.
Make Sure the Mixture Is Evenly Spread
Following the recipe and using the best ingredients, you have to ensure you spread the mix evenly. For example, the mixture must be evenly distributed when you make cookies or cupcakes.
If it isn’t, you will find you will have odd-looking cupcakes and cookies. You will also find that they do not bake as well as they should.
For example, more extensive cupcakes may not be cooked correctly in the center. More miniature cupcakes may then end up being overbaked.
Make Use of Stencils Where You Can
Once you have produced awesome-tasting cupcakes and cookies, you then have to think about adding some decoration. Naturally, you want them to be as appealing as possible. However, sometimes getting the perfect look by free-handing frosting or even using a piping bag is not always the best idea.
It is always good to use Christmas cookie and cupcake stencils to ensure that all cookies and cupcakes look the same. It is also beneficial to use stencils to help build your confidence in the process. You have just baked an excellent batch and want to be sure they look great, too, so why wouldn’t you use stencils and aids to get the consistency you require?
Using Frosting and Piping
When baking, you will want to experiment with different decorations and decor. For example, using frosting on cupcakes can be tricky the first few times, especially if you are new to operating a spatula for such small areas.
With practice, you will find that a bit of frosting can go a long way – especially on cupcakes. If you want to try using piping bags for decoration, start with a couple of different nozzles.
There are lots of patterns you can get, but as you build up your confidence, you want to perfect a couple (at least) before moving on. Piping work on cupcakes and cookies can look messy if it is rushed or if it is inconsistent, so always make sure to take your time.
Before handing out cookies and cupcakes to those you love and care about, always ensure you taste-test the final product.
Sometimes looks can be deceiving, and you can find that a beautifully decorated cupcake or cookie tastes bland. To ensure that this does not happen, always taste test, critique your work, and see how you can improve the next batch that you make.
To bake awesome cupcakes and cookies every time, you must be passionate about your actions. There is more to baking than simply throwing all the ingredients into a bowl and then mixing. Patience, passion, and attention to detail are all essential elements you must use every time you are baking.