5 best baking tips from the experts
The Great British Bake Off returns later this summer, and once again we’ll be attempting to serenade our sponges and not burn our brownies. So we asked the Fabulous Bakers – the first mainstream bakery to ditch artificial colours, flavours and preservatives – to give us their best baking tips
5 TIPS FOR A PERFECT BAKE
1. Ingredients are everything
The perfect cake or muffin requires great quality ingredients, including flour, fresh free-range eggs and butter for your base mix – never margarine. Then natural ingredients need to be added like fresh fruit without artificial preservatives, or a great quality cocoa to add flavour. It’s the quality of your basic ingredients that affects the final taste.
2. Measuring quantities is key for a perfect texture
James, our Chief Muffin Baker, believes that everyone can be a fabulous baker, provided they follow step 1 and ensure that they accurately measure out quantities. He points out that, despite it being an obvious step, it’s usually the reason that cakes, flapjacks and muffins go skew-whiff. When creating new recipes from scratch ensure that you always follow the same basic quantity principles so that your new creations are still edible and tasty, and be aware that some fruits, for instance, contain more water, which may affect the final recipe. If it calls for dried fruits, don’t use fresh – and vice versa.
3. Experimental flavours
Boldly blend flavours that you wouldn’t expect to be mingling in your mouth and let your palette go on an adventure. The Fabulous Bakers enjoy a regular ‘Crazy Cake’ day – their current favourite being Apple, Kale and Basil. Vegetables may not spring to mind in baking, but carrot cake is a winner – also worth trying are courgette and beetroot.
4. Make it fun
Baking should be fun, not a chore. Our baking-family ethos runs through our range of baked treats, where everyone has his or her say. Get your brothers and sisters involved, your mothers, your partner, or anyone else you rather like. Put on some good tunes, pop on an apron and let the fun commence. We believe that joyful baking can be tasted – but let us know if you think there’s truth to our theory!
5. Oven top tips
While every cake is of course different there are some general ‘oven rules of thumb’. These include placing your tins in the centre of the oven for an even bake, turning the tins during baking and, of course, sticking a toothpick in to double check that it is fully baked through.