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Carrot cake, chocolate cupcakes, and banana bread should bring delight not dread. Baking only looks hard, we promise. With the right tips and a little patience, you’ll be breezily whipping up impressive baked goods in no time. It’s time to feel the joy of baking. Follow these do’s and don’ts, and practice your newfound baking prowess with these easy-to-make red velvet cupcakes.
DON’T crowd the oven. Your pans should never touch each other or the sides of the oven.
DO stir your flour before you measure it to “loosen” it. Sifting flour first is only necessary if the recipe calls for it. Tip: Keep a spoon in your flour bin for convenient stirring.
DON’T guess on the measurements. Use exact amounts, even with small measurements like salt. Use measuring spoons and cups and level off the top with a straight edge spatula or knife.
DO use a paper towel to grease your pan. Even if you’re using pan spray, take a paper towel and evenly distribute the spray throughout your pan. If you’re using butter, shortening or margarine, always dip the paper towel first in the greasing agent and then spread. Don’t place the greasing agent directly on the pan.
DON’T use spreads instead of butter. If your recipe calls for butter, only use stick butter not spreads like Smart Balance. Spreads contain less fat and more water, so they will not perform like butter or margarine.
DO bake in a well-maintained oven. Try to bake in a poorly maintained oven and you’ll produce a lopsided, undercooked mess due to grease, fat, and dirt build-up in your oven. For step-by-step maintenance instructions, read Clean Your Manual Clean Oven.
Keeping your oven and stovetop in top shape is important, for your home and your health. We've got you covered with detailed step-by-step instructions on how to clean all types: