I am always on the hunt for new methods or techniques for doing the same 'ol things. If you have an amazing tip that changed the way you bake, cake, cupcake or cookie, care to share? I love them, I use them, I write them down and I'm willing to share too...
Here are 10 that have come through for me in one way or another (in no particular order):
- I hate it when the fondant pulls away from the cake circle of the upper tier of a cake. When stacking cakes, dust the the top of the cake tier with powdered sugar prior to placing the next tier on top. It prevents the bottom of that next tier from sticking and pulling away the lower tier's fondant when separating to serve.
- Bake your cakes at a lower temperature to prevent them from doming and baking unevenly. The is especially great for larger cakes and makes leveling a lot easier. I tend to bake at around 300-315 degree farhenheit.
- When using small letter cutters, dust the fondant well w/ powdered sugar and place plastic wrap between the cutter and the fondant. This will help prevent the fondant from sticking in the small crevices. And if it's stuck to the plastic wrap, pull taut to release letter.
To make fondant ropes, use a clay extruder or the less expensive Playdoh Fun Factory (just be sure to lube well with shortening to prevent sticking).
Coating chocolate chips or nuts with flour before adding to cake/muffin mixture will prevent them from sinking to the bottom while baking.
- If you use an airbrush, do not begin spraying directly on cake. When doing overall color application, start to the right or left of the cake (which should be airbrushed in a closed space -- cardboard box, etc.), then apply. This is the best way to avoid unintentional streaks of color.
Do you doctor your cake mixes? If so, instead of using water as instructed on the box, use milk, chocolate milk - for chocolate cakes, lemon juice - for lemon cakes, coffee, etc., as liquid replacement to enhance the flavor of similarly flavored cakes.
- Does your recipe call for buttermilk and you have none on hand? Add 1 Tbsp white vinegar or lemon juice to 1 cup of milk and let stand for 5-10 minutes. Voila!
- I rarely have cake flour on hand, so....use 1 cup minus 2 Tbsp all purpose flour for each cup of cake flour. SIFT.
- Use uncooked spaghetti noodles to test cake doneness and you're less likely to waste all those toothpicks you need for something else.