Baking – for some it’s an art they’re passionate about, for some a casual hobby. Whatever the reason, there’s always one good thing that comes out of it – a lip-smacking baked goodie to sit and enjoy. It could be a cookie, brownie, or muffin, or everybody’s all-time favorite – cake!
While bakers (we aren’t referring to only professional ones; includes anybody who enters the kitchen to bake something) end up having a lot of fun at creating things that can make mouths water, they always need assistance. And again, we aren’t talking about physical help from a person, it implies to the tools and appliances that can help make baking simpler and more enjoyable.
There are tons of them to name but here we’re going to list out just the very essential ones a baker just can’t do without in his kitchen. Take a look; you may need them too, the next time you bake a cake!
Important Kitchen Tools Used in Baking
- Oven Thermometer – This is important if your oven is neither new nor regularly adjusted, in which case the temperature readings are, more often that not, likely to be highly inaccurate. You’d notice that if the temperature requirement for a specific bakery goodie is say 350°F, your oven may not exactly be the same temperature on the inside. This means that your baked good may not turn out right as expected.
- Hand Mixer – This works the best for novice bakers who want to polish their baking skills without having to spend a lot. Plus, they are extremely easy to use too.
- Food Scale – The secret to a perfect baked item is that each of its ingredients is in the correct proportion. And how does one know whether it’s correct? Just by tasting it. A single ingredient gone off track in terms of measurement, and your audience can make out. It’s therefore very important to know your measurements right, for which you definitely need a food scale. You also need a measuring cup to correctly measure the right volume of liquid or solid ingredients such as powdered sugar, flour, shredded cheese etc.
- Silicone Baking Mats – One of the newer tools that has completely changed the look and feel of baking. People have always been baking cakes and cookies on parchment paper, which is still great by the way. Yet, silicone baking mats come with one extra advantage – they are completely reusable.
There’s more – the nonstick surface of the mat is perfect for pouring out and removing any kind of dough (sticky or otherwise). And the base of your cookies and cakes is always evenly baked.
- Spatulas and Whisks – You’ll need at least a dozen of them because you never know which might come in handy when. You need them for everything right from mixing and stirring to scraping off from the sides of the bowl, spreading frosting, flipping over and what not. Keep spatulas in bulk stock so that you don’t get run short of it.
- Cookie Scoops – Who doesn’t love cookies and that too in amazing shapes? How do you get those shapes perfectly, the answer’s right here! These scoops come in different shapes and sizes to serve different demands. They’re extremely handy whether it’s large cakes you’re baking for a party or just tiny cookies for the family.
- Sifter – It’s always a good idea to sift all your dry ingredients like flour, sugar, and cocoa powder, before adding them to your recipe. This ensures that they are free of any unwanted external agent, which is definitely unwelcome in your food. Moreover, sifting aerates these ingredients and helps remove any lumps. What’s more, it’s sturdy and durable, usually available in stainless steel, and is also cheap and easily available.
- Rolling Pin – You’d want one of these to roll out all your pie crust, cookie dough, and much more. Go for a marble one as it’s cooler to touch, which also makes it ideal for rolling out literally anything. And it’s easily affordable too.
- Baking Pans – You can’t do without them and you’ll need a whole range of them too in different sizes to keep trying different stuff. It’s highly recommended to keep at least one each of the following sizes always ready in your kitchen if you’re a regular baker – 9-inch cake pan, 9-inch square pan, 12-count muffin pan, 9-inch pie plate, 9×13 baking pan, 24-count mini muffin pan, and 9×5 inch loaf pan.
- Rimmed Baking Sheets – They’re an absolute must for baking anything, right from cookies, sheet cakes, bread, rolls, pouring out toffee, for roasting vegetables, meats, fish and other frozen foods. Try getting the ones with rimmed edges to prevent sauces and syrups from dripping at the sides
- Mixing Bowls – Just like the spatulas and whisks, you need them in plenty, in different sizes for different ingredients. Try to go for heavy-duty ones, they’re durable. Also, it’s better if they have pour spouts for extra comfort during pouring and to avoid making a mess.
Taking Care of your Baking Tools
Needless to say, most of these baking equipment requires huge investment. Therefore, it becomes mandatory to take good care of them so that they last longer and serve full value for the money spent. Here’s how you can take care of your kitchen tools –
- Use your oven as an oven and not as a table, shelf, or closet. Close the door gently; avoid banging it loud.
- Avoid scraping off leftovers from baking pans with a knife or any other sharp metal object.
- Avoid operating the hand mixer at a stretch, break the pattern and blend things at an interval of a few minutes.
- Always wash mixing bowls, spatulas, and whisks in warm soapy water but rinse them in cold running water.
- Always place baking sheets or parchment paper over baking trays to avoid the dough sticking on. In case it still does, never scrape it off with a metallic object.
Baking requires patience and love for what you’re making and for whom. Do it right and it’d yield some amazing results.Use the right tools in the right way and go ahead tickle your taste buds.