Baking the best goodies for dessert can be pretty stressful. Why? The slightest slips often lead to unsavoury treats that ruin the finale of a delicious meal. That is why you must do everything possible to ensure you have heavenly delicacies for dessert.
With that in mind, we have compiled ten of the best dessert baking tips below (here are some pro tips as well). These will help you prepare nothing but the best afters. Enjoy!
1. Re-read the Recipe as Many Times as Possible
Baking is a science. As such, there’s very little room for errors. That is why you should follow the instructions to the letter. And to do that, you must first go through the recipe, check if you’ve understood everything, and revisit them if necessary.
Don’t skip this step, even if you’re preparing a simple dessert like sugar cookies. You may forget a crucial step like chilling the dough and end up baking flat, lifeless disks while aiming for soft, chewy delicacies.
2. Prep All Ingredients Before Beginning
Picture this: you plan to bake a splendid lemon ricotta cake for your loved ones. Preparation is going amazingly well, and you’re even humming a little tune. Then, immediately after whisking all the dry ingredients, you reach out for the ricotta cheese and, uh-oh, you’re out!
Many people often realize they don’t have a vital ingredient at the last minute. Prepare all ingredients beforehand to save yourself from rushing to and from the store at the most inopportune moment. That way, you can notice anything missing as early as possible.
3. Pay Close Attention to Room Temperature
You must have come across a recipe with several “room temperature” ingredients, such as butter.
But do you know why room temperature ingredients matter? When elements like eggs and dairy products are at room temperature, they trap air through emulsions. Then, the trapped air expands during baking, resulting in fluffy baked goods.
4. Measure, Measure, Measure
There are no ifs or buts here. You must measure all ingredients precisely to produce desserts with the desired look, texture, and taste.
Failure to measure ingredients accordingly is highly likely to end in premium tears. And, in extreme cases, you may bake a disaster no one will enjoy, leading to costly wastages.
Therefore, if you don’t have a kitchen scale, get it before baking the next dessert and use it whenever you want to bring out your mojo and wow your audience.
5. Get a Good Mixer
Mixing is an indispensable step in baking. And blending and dispersing ingredients (dry and liquid) to form a homogenous mass is impossible without it. Plus, you need the correct mixing methods to entrap air in butter or dough and guarantee fantastic texture, flavour, and appearance.
You may buy a top-tier hand or stand mixer depending on your needs and preferences. Either way, settle for nothing but the best machine.
6. Always Grease the Baking Pan
Baked goods sometimes stick to the pan’s bottom or sides. And the experience is often full-on frustrating, and the results are nothing but disastrous.
But there’s a simple trick you can use to ensure the desserts you bake release without sticking: grease the pan. But before doing that, check if your recipe calls for a specific greasing product, be it nonstick cooking spray, bacon fat, vegetable oil, etc.
7. Check if Your Oven’s Temperature is Accurate
Baking a superb dessert requires the correct oven temperature. For instance, if you want desserts with crisp edges, the 375-400⁰F range may do the trick.
Although your oven may have dials that you can use to set the temperature, relying on these components alone is inadvisable. Get an oven thermometer to ensure your oven preheats accurately and maintains the desired temperatures.
8. Use the Right Leavening Agent
If you were to list three leavening agents, you’d likely mention baking soda, yeast, and baking powders in a heartbeat.
But, can you sum up their differences and best applications just as fast? If not, it’s about time you got acquainted with your leavening agents and how they work.
Above all, avoid using old leaving agents because they may be ineffective.
9. Use Quality Ingredients
Quality baked goods and top-tier baking products go hand in hand. You can’t have one without the other.
Therefore, if you want to feed your loved ones sumptuous, wholesome, finger-licking desserts, settling for sub-par ingredients is a big no-no. Besides, low-quality baking products lose their potency and flavour fast, so going for reputable items is more cost-effective in the long run.
10. Gussy Up with Mayo
Very few people know this pro tip: mayonnaise works wonders when incorporated into baked goods.
Mayo should be your magic ingredient if you want to prepare super tender desserts. The same applies when you want to offset your goodies’ sweetness and make them sing. Try experimenting with mayo in different recipes and find the sweet spot for all future baking endeavours.