Here are some tips, tricks & ideas to make the whole baking experience easier.
- Go out & buy a some Parchment Paper & then use it. For everything! Use it to line your cookie sheets, loaf pans, baking pans, brownie pans, basically everything that you will be baking in or on. It makes the removal of the baked good so much easier than a "greased pan" & it makes the clean up a cinch!
- Your recipe will only turn out as good as the ingredients that you used. So, if your recipe calls specifically for Butter, then do not use Margarine. Butter has a very different taste & texture then Margarine. Your recipe may turn out tasting or looking very different. This is especially true of things like Shortbread Cookies.
- Same thing if you are making something with a heavy presence of Chocolate, like Chocolate Chip Cookies, use a good quality Chocolate meant for baking with like Callebaut or even Bakers Brand. Try to stay away from the Grocery Store brands & the "Chocolate Flavoured Chips". They are usually made with poorer quality ingredients & you will be disappointed in the end result.
- The same can also be said for the type of Flour you are using. For the most part, I like to use All Purpose Flour whenever I can. it saves me from having 4 or 5 different flours on hand. However, in the case of making finer desserts like Soufflés or Pastry use the specified type of Flour that your recipe is asking for. It will make a world of difference.
- Store Brands or No Name Products - Now having said all of the above, there are definitely some areas where you can save on. Baking Soda, Baking Powder, All Purpose Flour, Salt, Peanut Butter, etc... do not need to be top of the line products. Arm & Hammer branded Baking Soda is just as good as the no name one at No Frills or the stuff you get at Bulk Barn.