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Cake, Pie and Cookie Food Facts

Cake, Pie and Cookie Food Facts

Baked Goods Professional Style

Baked cakes, pies and cookies are the joy of working with your hands, of creating edible works of art from a few basic ingredients.

Experienced bakers and pastry chefs actually listen to the sound of cake batter being beaten in a bowl, knowing that changes in sound accompany changes to the batter itself. They push and pummel bread dough to feel how it responds. They use smells from the oven to judge when baking is nearly complete, and they sample their finished products before presenting them to anyone.

Experienced bakers and pastry chefs rely on tools like timers and thermometers, because they know how time and temperature affect product quality. They also rely heavily on accurate scales. Along with all of this are a myraid of other tips and tricks, some of which we share with you now.

Fun, useful and interesting facts on cakes, pies and cookies.

  • Pies and tarts are the most popular desserts with people whose dinner check is under 20.00 dollars.
  • Try brushing the bottom crust of fruit pies with egg whites to prevent the fruit juices from soaking in.
  • Make sure your oven has been pre-heated for 15 to 20 minutes before placing a cake in.
  • Always bake on a middle shelf in the oven; the heat will circulate more evenly.
  • To keep a cake from drying out, attach slices of bread with toothpicks to any exposed cut edges of cakes.
  • To ice a many-layered cake, try attaching all the layers with a few pieces of dry spaghetti.
  • If your icing becomes too thick, try adding a few drops of lemon juice and mix well.
  • To make a delicate cake, use half unbleached white flour and half whole wheat flour.
  • A teaspoon of vinegar added to pie dough will guarantee a flaky crust.
  • If you want to prevent a cake from falling after you place the batter in the pan, raise the pan and drop it suddenly to the counter to release the air bubbles.
  • To keep a pie crust from becoming soft and soggy during baking, try warming the pan before placing in the under crust.
  • If you want an extra flaky pie crust, try substituting ice-cold sour cream or whipping cream for water. Works great but adds fat and cholesterol.
  • Try placing a rose germanium leaf on the bottom of the cake pan for a pleasant scent to a white or yellow cake.
  • Never use low fat margarine for baking. Cakes will collapse and cookies may flatten and lose their form. Low fat margarine contains a higher air and water content which is released during cooking or baking and alters the consistency of the product. Do not substitute margarine for butter in any recipe.
  • All recipes call for large grade A eggs unless specified otherwise. Lattice Crust Apple Pie
  • If you want to add some pizzazz to your lemon tarts or pies, try rubbing a sugar cube over the surface of a lemon. The sugar cube will extract oils from the lemon that will be released during the cooking process. Works for oranges, too.
  • Butter cakes should have an adequate amount of air bubbles in them which is produced by creaming the sugar and fat.
  • Chiffon cakes use oil in place of butter which will produce a more tender crumb.
  • All fats used for cakes should be at room temperature for the best results. If not they will not blend well with all the ingredients.
  • Sweeteners contribute to the tender qualities of a cake, but remember that you cannot substitute granulated sugars for powdered sugars. Granulated for baking, powdered for frostings and glazes.
  • If a recipe requires you to grease or flour a pan, read all the directions carefully. They may only want the bottom of the pan done, so that the cake is allowed to cling to the sides as it bakes.
  • Butter used in recipes should be soft, not melted, if you would like a better texture to your cakes. The more butter that is melted, the more it breaks down.
  • If you are baking a cake in a glass pan, you should lower your oven temperature by about 25 degrees. It will save the bottom of the cake from getting scorched.
  • To keep soft cookies from becoming hard, try placing a slice of very fresh white bread in the cookie jar. Chocolate COokie
  • For the highest meringue, the secret is to add some baking powder to room temperature egg whites before beating them. As you beat the eggs, add two to three tablespoons of granulated sugar for each egg used, beating continuously. Perfect peaks should form and stand upright without keeling over.
  • To eliminate weeping meringue, try leaving the meringue in the oven until it cools. Turn the oven off before it is finished.
  • When baking acidic fruit pies such as cherry or apple it is best to use ceramic or glass pie pans to avoid the pies turning gray from a reaction with the metal.
  • Chill the dough before working it into the pie tin. The cold firms up the fat and will relax the gluten in the flour so that it will hold its shape better. A relaxed crust is a happy crust.
  • If you need to use the same measuring cup for eggs and oil, make sure you measure the eggs first then the oil. The eggs will coat the cup and all the oil will slide out easily.
  • Baking powder retains maximum potency for about one year.
  • Always use unsalted butter when greasing a pan. Chances of having a saing problem will be greatly reduced.
  • When making meringue tortes, always leave the torte in the oven until it has fully cooled to avoid cracking.
  • When measuring flour for a pie crust, always sift the flour first for a more accurate measurement.
  • To maintain the shape of a souffle, serve immediately after it is steam baked and always on a warm plate to avoid a collapse.
  • Pie crusts will turn out better if all the ingredients are cold and the dough is not overworked. The dough should also be refrigerated before it is rolled.
  • Wheat flour will give you crunchier cookies if butter is used as the shortening. If oil is used the cookies will be more tender and softer.
  • When making pie dough, it is best to use lard instead of butter. The crust will be flakier and lard actually has less saturated fat than butter. A solid shortening may also produce good results.
  • When reusing a cooking pan for numerous batches of cookies, try running the bottom of the pan under cold water, but do not get the cooking surface wet. This will reduce the risk of burning the bottom of the cookies. Frosted Cookies
  • Cookies will also lose their shape when placed on a hot cookie pan. Try to cool the pan or rotate your pans.
  • To avoid over baking cookies, just remove them from the oven a few minutes before they are done. The hot pan continues to bake for a few minutes after removed from the oven.
  • If you want to perk up meringue peaks, add one-quarter teaspoon of white vinegar for each three egg whites (during beating). Also, if you add four to five drops of lemon juice per each cup of cream it will remain firmer longer.
  • Another method of perking up meringue peaks is to add some baking powder to room temperature egg whites before beating them.
  • When you bake meringue kisses, line the baking sheet with a brown paper bag.
  • Fruitcakes will remain moist if you wrap them with a damp towel.
  • If you bake an angel food cake on the bottom of a rack at 325 degrees, you will make a moister cake. Try our Chocolate Espresso Angel Food Cake Recipe.
  • The best way to cut angel food cake is with an electric knife.
  • If you want to add a crunchy texture to oatmeal cookies, lightly toast the oatmeal before mixing it into the batter. To toast, just sprinkle the flakes in a thin layer on a cookie sheet and heat at 185 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes or until the flake are brown.
  • Adding one-quarter teaspoon of almond extract to cherry or peach pies will give them a better flavor.
  • Sugar cookies will not get stiff or tough if you roll them out in sugar instead of flour.
  • When making frosting, try using a pinch of baking soda in the powdered sugar and the frosting will not crumble and dry as quickly. The baking soda will help retain liquids for a longer period of time.
  • To keep juices inside the crust when baking pies with juicy fillings, try adding a tablespoon of tapioca before baking. This helps thicken the mixture.
  • Before baking a pie that is juicy, insert a tube of macaroni in the center of the top of the pie and the juices will not bubble out.
  • If you must cut a cake while it is still hot, use unwaxed dental floss instead of a knife.
  • To prevent a soggy crust on pastry shells, try coating the shells with egg white before baking.
  • For a flakier pastry shell or pie crust, add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice to the batter.
  • If a pie shell blisters, try placing a few slices of white bread on the shell before baking. Then bake and remove the bread just before it is finished.
  • To eliminate soggy pie shells, spread a thin layer of butter on the pie plate bottom before putting the dough in.
  • When using a cream filling in a pie, coat the crust with granulated sugar before adding the cream. Doing so will eliminate a soggy crust.
  • For a real treat when making pumpkin pie, place a layer of marshmallows on the bottom. While the pie is baking they will rise to the top and form a great topping. The air in the marshmallows is expanded by the heat.
  • The world's largest pumpkin pie weighed in at 2,020 pounds. It was set in Ohio in 2005.. (Guiness World Records)
  • When your recipe calls for flour to be sifted, add the leavening and salt when sifting for a better blend.
  • If cookies are not browning properly, try baking them on a higher shelf.
  • An easy formula for a great cake flour is to mix together 2 tablespoons of cornstarch in 1 cup of all purpose flour.
  • To reduce the sugar needed for cake and cookies, try using a small amount of vanilla extract to replace each one-half cup of sugar.
  • To create a better textured cake, add 2 tablespoons of boiling water to the butter and sugar when they are being mixed.
  • To keep your cookies moist, try adding a teaspoon of jelly to the batter.
  • If you want a moist cake, try adding 2 tablespoons of corn oil to the mix.
  • To make thinner pie pastry, before rolling the dough out, coat the board or waxed paper lightly with olive oil and the dough will not crumble when stretched.
  • Icing will remain where you put it, if you sprinkle the cake first with powdered sugar.
  • Butter your knife before you cut a pie with a soft filling.
  • Cookie JarStore crisp cookies in a cookie can that has a loose cover. If you tightly seal them they may loose their crispness.
  • Soft cookies should be stored in a well sealed cookie jar with half an apple or a slice of bread with them to provide moisture. Change the apple or bread regularly.
  • When using plastic cookie cutters, they should be dipped in warm vegetable oil while you are working. You will get a cleaner, more defined edge on the patterns.
  • To make your cakes and pancakes moist, try adding a teaspoon or two of honey to the batter.
  • To keep waxed paper down on the counter when rolling dough, try wetting the counter first.
  • Use a salt shaker filled with powdered or colored sugar for sprinkling candy or cookies. Make the holes larger if needed.
  • The best way to cushion cookies for mailing is with popcorn.
  • Always cut a cake from the center, then you can slide the remains next to each other to keep it fresher.
  • Cookie dough should be chilled for 15 to 30 minutes (at least) before rolling. This will eliminate the dough from saing to the rolling pin.
  • Make chocolate slivers by using a potato peeler on a candy bar.
  • When baking any pie or dish with a graham cracker crust, dip the pan in warm water for ten seconds and it will be easier to remove it in one piece.
  • Angel food cake should be cooled by turning the pan upside down over a tray of ice cubes.
  • If you increase the amount of egg yolk in a doughnut, it will absorb less grease. It's a toss up whether you increase your fat intake or your cholesterol level.
  • Never taste the batter when you are baking. It may contain raw eggs and salmonella contamination.
  • Before you place a cake on a plate, sprinkle the plate with sugar to prevent the bottom of the cake from saing to the plate.
  • If you want to revive a stale cake, just dip it quickly in cold low fat milk and heat it in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes or until soft.
  • MixerWhen mixing batter, spray the beaters with Pam before using them and the batter will not climb up the beaters.
  • Pastry should be rolled out between two sheets of waxed paper, then remove the top sheet to use the pastry for a pie plate.
  • To improve the texture of a cake, add a few drops of boiling water to the butter and sugar when creaming.
  • If your custard pie shrinks away from the crust, you have baked it too long in too hot an oven.
  • To cut a cake without breaking the icing, wet your knife in boiling water first.
  • When a bread or cake browns too quickly, place a small pan of warm water above it in the oven.
  • Coat dried fruit and nuts with flour being used in a recipe to prevent them from falling to the bottom while baking.
  • When using a packaged pastry mix for a piecrust, substitute light cream or light sour cream for the liquid in the mix recipe.
  • Cookies that have become soft can be crisped up by placing them into a low temperature oven for five minutes.
  • When making pancakes, try using a small amount of salt in place of grease on the griddle.
  • For a great taste try burying a piece of vanilla bean in an airtight jar of granulated sugar for a few days before using the sugar for baking. The gases given off by the bean will flavor the sugar.
  • Grind up a few black walnuts in a blender then add to pumpkin pie for an improved flavor.
  • Place at least four toothpicks around the top of a meringue pie and cover with wax paper, if you are going to carry it a distance.
  • To eliminate a mess, freeze your unfrosted cake before cutting it into decorative party shapes. Your cake will also slice more evenly.
  • Add a few drops of vinegar to ice water when making pastry. The pastry will come out flakier and lighter.
  • When storing cake, place half an apple in the container along with the cake. This will help the cake retain freshness.
  • Over 3,500 feet, increase the temperature 25 degrees and add 1 tablespoon more flour to your recipes. Continue adding 1 tablespoon for every 1,500 feet increase in elevation.
  • When using leavening, if 1 teaspoon is needed at sea level, use 2/3 teaspoon at 3,500 feet and one-half teaspoon at 5000 feet, then 1/3 teaspoon at 6500 feet. Use one-quarter teaspoon over 6,500 feet.
  • Never use wrapped pans for cookies and cakes; batter may run and will spoil the appearance as well as the product.
  • Use toothpicks to trace a design on top of an iced cake before adding colored toppings.
  • Never over crowd your oven, heat must circulate freely around all items that are in the oven or they will not bake evenly.
  • If you are having a problem with your baking soda, powder or cream of tartar they may be too old. Date these products when they are purchased.
  • To test the leavening ability of baking powder, place one-half teaspoon in one-quarter cup of hot water. If the powder is useable the water will bubble actively.

Grandma's Cup Cake Recipe

Grandmas Cup Cake Recipe

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