May is National Egg Month, which means we get to celebrate the incredible, edible, egg-celent egg all month long. This year, you can help us celebrate by entering our second annual Baking Contest. ENTER HERE!
Of course, we also consider ourselves “eggsperts” when it comes to eggs, so here are some of our best baking tips. We hope they provide some ideas and inspirations for your own Baking Contest entry.
• Use room-temperature ingredients. Plenty of baking recipes call for room-temperature ingredients, but this step is frequently ignored. Plan ahead and set your eggs and butter out an hour before. When at room temperature, eggs, butter, and other dairy ingredients form an emulsion, which traps air. While baking in the oven, that trapped air expands and produces fluffy baked goods.
• Butter and flour your pans generously. Your batter or dough has the potential to bake on and adhere to the pan, so butter it up. Consider every nook and cranny that could get sticky, and be generous and thorough with your application.
• Measure your ingredients. Successful baking means eliminating as much potential for error as possible, and that means making sure your measurements are exact. A cup of flour measured in volume, for example, can vary as much as five ounces. To be more precise use a straight edge to ensure that the dry ingredients in your measuring cups are level. Semi-solid foods, such as peanut butter, sour cream, mayonnaise and shortening, should be packed into measuring cups to remove all air bubbles until they are level with the top of the cup.
• Rotate halfway through. Every oven has a hot spot, and if you don’t correct for it, you run the risk of unevenly cooked pastries—or worse, some that burn or wind up underbaked. When a recipe calls for turning a baking sheet or pan 180 degrees halfway through the process, don’t ignore it!
• Know your oven. Find out if your oven runs hot or cold—if you know that it’s consistently 25 degrees lower than what you set it at, adjust accordingly.