Tip of The Week

Today we’re starting a new weekly series!  For years, you’ve been sending in your questions.  Asking for tips and advice on anything and everything baking related.  For years, I’ve tried to respond to as many of your questions as possible.  I’m honored that you would even ask me!  But I have to admit that I struggle to keep up with the sheer volume of your emails.  So I thought it would be fun (and beneficial for all) if we started to address some of the most commonly asked questions here on the blog.  Each week we’ll feature a new baking tip, trick or technique to officially kick off the conversation.  Then, it’s your turn to chime in!  Our little community is filled with talented bakers and an abundance of knowledge… from which we can all learn and grow.  And we’d love to hear your thoughts!  So let’s get chatting about this first Tip of the Week!

Cake & Baking Tips  |  TheCakeBlog.com

So let’s start at the very beginning. One of the first and most important steps for creating great cakes….

Cake & Baking Tips  |  TheCakeBlog.com

The best cakes start with room temperature ingredients.  Plain and simple.  Butter, eggs, and liquids should all be at room temperature before you even begin.  You will seriously see better results with all of your recipes.

Too often, my window of baking opportunity arrives only to find my ingredients still in the fridge.  Cold, cold, cold.  I’m sure I can’t be the only one with this problem.  So here are some quick and easy ways to cheat and bring your ingredients to room temperature, asap!

EGGS

  • Place eggs in a bowl and cover with lukewarm water.  Do this when you first enter the kitchen.  Then get out your other ingredients, pans, etc.  Your eggs will be ready when you’re ready!

BUTTER

  • Cut butter into small cubes.  Lay out cubes in a single layer on a plate or board.  The room-temp process will happen much faster.
  • Or, place butter between sheets of wax paper and pound with rolling pin.
  • Use a cheese grater to cut up your cold butter.  This works on frozen butter too!
  • Still not fast enough for you?  Place the entire stick of butter in the microwave for 5 seconds on 50% power.  Rotate stick and microwave again.  5 second intervals helps ensure that you don’t end up with a puddle of melted butter.  Every microwave is different, but four intervals (for a total of 20 seconds) gives me the perfect consistency.

MILK

  • Microwave on 50% power in 15 second intervals until room temperature.

Do you have a favorite way to bring ingredients to room temperature?  Share it with us!   

 

Carrie Sellman , Founder & Editor

Carrie Sellman is the Founder & Editor of The Cake Blog. Her work has been published in BRIDES Magazine, Country Living Magazine and featured online at People, Today, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Redbook, Real Simple, TLC, The Cooking Channel and more.

Learn Beautiful Cake Photography

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    This makes perfect sense! I wish I had known about this, I will remember this next time I bake! :) Love these tips, thanks for sharing.

  2. 2

    says

    Hi, I call my husband and have him lay everything out…just kidding. I want to say thank you for the time you devote to this. I look forward everyday to see what you have posted. It’ll be even more benefical now.

  3. 6

    says

    Just as you suggested for eggs, you can do the same thing with butter. Unwrap your block or stick of butter and place it (whole and unwrapped) in a bowl of lukewarm water. It will be softened in 10 minutes or so. Take care not to have the water too warm, though, or the butter will melt!

  4. 10

    says

    I place sticks of butter in Ziploc freezer bags and submerse them in lukewarm water (weigh them down with a glass dish or pot lid). They warm up pretty quickly without melting at all!

  5. 12

    says

    @Deborah: It has to do with the way protiens break down better when they are at room temperature. Warmer ingredients have looser bonds so they can break down more smoothly. When that happens, you are sure to have evenly dispersed ingreadients, no holes when things bake, and an even rise.

    I like to crack eggs into a plastic cup, and either measure my milk into a plastic cup or pour it into one after it’s measured (if you only have a glass measuring cup). Glass insulates more so than plastic so if you leave your milk in glass it won’t come to room temperature as quickly.

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