Simple Baking tips

Egg Whites: To get your egg whites to form stiff peaks, work with a room temperature egg. I drop my egg (in shell) in lukewarm water while preparing the rest of the ingredients. Use a copper bowl if possible since the reaction causes the eggs to have fluffy, high peaks. If you are using a stainless steel or glass bowl, add cream of tartar or lemon juice to achieve the same result as with a copper bowl. It takes time to form stiff peaks, so be patient!

Baking Powder: If you are out, you can use 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar for every 1tsp of baking powder that the recipe calls for.

Egg:  If you don't have, or don't want to use real eggs, use 1 tablespoon of soy flour, 2-3 tablespoons of water (consistency should be that of 1 beaten egg). Mix thouroughly, and use as you would an egg in a recipe. You can also add this to real eggs (scrambled) to extend your meal.

Oil: Substitute any fruit puree for same measurement of oil in baking recipes. Applesauce is the most common.

Over-cooked bread: If you over cook your quick-bread, turn it into Bread Pudding. Cut the bread into cubes and toast it in the oven at 200 degrees (to stale it a bit more), then follow recipe as directed.

Quick Cake: If you have a boxed cake mix and are out of eggs and oil, just add either 1 can of any soda, or a can of pumpkin or sweet potato puree. Bake as directed. This can also greatly reduce the calorie count if you use no/low calorie soda!

Corn Bread: In order to get your cornbread (boxed or homemade) to be fluffier when baked, let the mixture set for at least 10 minutes prior to pouring into desired baking dish. I use muffin tins.

Baked Bread: If you are unsure how to tell if your bread is done or not, pat the top. It should feel firm and sound hollow. Do not cut into the bread immediatly after taking it out of the oven if you are unsure of doneness. It will keep cooking for you!

Self Rising Flour substitute: 1 cup all purpose flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp salt (do not leave the salt out, it helps with the rising process)

Flat Cookies: If your homemade cookies came out flat, it can be due to using butter that was slightly melted instead of softened, or you mixed the dough too much and incorporated air into the dough. If your recipe calls for softened butter, it should be pliable to the touch, but not melted. Putting the butter in the microwave to soften if you forgot to take it out earlier is not a great idea! Instead, cut up the butter into several small chunks and set it out on the counter for a bit.