There’s nothing like filling your kitchen with the tantalising aroma of baked goods.
Here are Paul’s tips to make baking a big success at your house.
• Use the right flour for the right job. If you’re baking bread, you don’t want to use the same flour as when you’re baking a cake; the reason being the protein content in the flour.
• When baking bread, use bread flour. It has a higher protein content than plain flour and that’ll help give the dough a better structure.
• If you’re making a cake, use cake flour. It has a lower protein content than plain flour and enables the cake batter to be crumbly, soft and not tough.
• Always sift your flour; this aerates the particles and stops any clumping from forming.
• If you run out of self-raising flour you can make it yourself by combining 1 cup of plain flour with 2 teaspoons of baking soda and sift together.
• Get the best quality butter you can afford.
• Always weigh and let your butter come to room temperature well in advance of baking.
• Use free range eggs; the yolks will have a richer flavour and the whites will be stronger for whipping.
• Crack eggs on a flat surface for a more even break and less chance of the shell crumbling and shell pieces in your mix.
• If you do get a shell pieces in your mix, use the larger egg shell to remove it, it’ll stick better than using a spoon.
• Break your eggs individually into a bowl that way if a yolk is split or the egg has gone off, it hasn’t ruined the rest of your batch.
• When whipping egg whites, make sure the bowl is spotlessly clean and dry. Any oil or water in the bowl will inhibit the egg whites from forming a soft, light and fluffy structure.