I was lucky to have Grandmas that were cookie bakers. We would make cinnamon cookies, chocolate chip cookies, and many other things together. In their memory, I’ve gathered up their 10 best baking tips to share with you.
- Everybody loves freshly baked cookies, but you don’t always have time to get all the ingredients together and make them from scratch. It’s easy to grab a tube of cookie dough at the store, but who knows what polyunsaturated hydrogenated gunk is in them? Prepare for cookie cravings by making an extra batch of dough and freezing it. Roll the dough into a log, wrap it really well in wax paper and store in a ziploc bag. Then when you NEED a fresh cookie, slice off and bake as many cookies as you want.
- Keep the chemicals out of your cookies with these healthy baking alternatives.
- If you’re a big cookie-decorating family, you probably have a ton of colored sugars, sprinkles, and so on. When it’s time to decorate, put each variety into the cup of a muffin tin. It’s easy for kids to pass around the table, and easy to stash away if you get interrupted. If you put a paper liner in the tins, you can just pick up the leftovers and pour them back in the container.
- If you just need a little flour for dusting the counter, put it in a clean spice or parmesan cheese shaker. Keep the shaker at your baking station–much easier than dragging the whole flour canister out for just a sprinkle.
- Don’t spray pans with non-stick spray on the counter or even over the sink. You’ll have an overspray of oily film to clean up! Instead, place the pan on the dishwasher door. It will clean itself with the next load of dishes.
- Did your bread forget to rise? Were the fancy sesame-seed crackers rejected by the family? Maybe there’s a few stale bites left in the cereal box. Don’t toss those crunchless creations! Break them up and put them outside for the birds. They’ll especially love any cereals with peanut butter.
- Keep brown sugar in a ziploc bag instead of in the original box. It will stay moist longer, and it’s easy to dip the measuring cup in a ziploc.
- Don’t open the oven door to peek at your creations! Each time you open, it lets 20% or more of the heat out. Stick to the timer and the oven window instead.
- Baking with kids equals guaranteed interruptions. It’s pretty easy to re-measure the flour, but you can’t re-measure anything once it’s been added to the flour. To make sure you don’t put the salt in twice, put all of your “small” ingredients (baking soda, salt, spices, etc) on a plate in separate piles. Once they’ve all been measured out, add everything to the flour at once.
- Keep an extra chopstick or handle from a broken spatula in your flour container to level off the measuring cup, instead of searching for (and dirtying) a knife or other kitchen tool.
Share your baking tips and secrets in the comments!