Dessert Making: 6 Mistakes To Avoid While Measuring Ingredients
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Dessert making or baking just about anything from cakes to bread, is a question of precision and patience, most often. When it comes to following recipes, what matters more than just having the right ingredients, is ensuring that the quantities are right to the point of requirement as per the recipe. Especially in the case of making desserts that involve further cooking processes, the final results depend heavily on the cook’s ability to follow a recipe with measurements as accurately as is needed.

However, sometimes when the measurement of ingredients vary even the slightest bit, it could result in a cake with a sink in the centre or dough that is denser than desirable. Hence, having a strategy while using precise measurements is the key to acing quantitative cooking and achieve an output as was expected. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Eyeballing Measurements

One of the most significant mistakes is estimating ingredient quantities by eye rather than using proper measuring tools. Invest in good measuring cups and spoons to ensure accurate measurements for dry ingredients like flour, sugar and cocoa powder, as well as liquids like milk and oil.

Wrong Measuring Techniques

Make sure you are using the correct measuring technique for each ingredient and follow one type of metric throughout a recipe. Additionally, when measuring flour, use a spoon to lightly scoop it into the measuring cup and level it off with a flat edge. Don't tap the cup or shake it to make the flour settle, as this can lead to inaccurate measurements.

Liquid Measuring Tools

When measuring liquids like milk, oil or vanilla extract, use a liquid measuring cup. Read the measurement at eye level while the cup is on a flat surface to ensure accuracy. Avoid measuring liquids in dry measuring cups as they are designed for dry ingredients. Refrain from using bottles with approximate volume measures to make do for the absence of liquid measuring cups.

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Ignoring Weight Measurements

Some professional bakers and advanced home bakers prefer using a kitchen scale to measure ingredients by weight in grams instead of volumes like cups and spoons. Weight measurements are often more accurate, particularly for ingredients like flour, oats, almond meal and other dry ingredients like rice flakes, etc. that can be compacted differently.

Non-Sifting Of Dry Ingredients

Sifting dry ingredients like flour, baking powder, and cocoa powder is essential for achieving uniform texture and eliminating lumps. It is advisable not to skip this step, especially in recipes that require precise measurements.

Discounting Ingredient Temperature

Ingredients like butter, eggs and milk should be at the specified temperature in the recipe. Using cold butter when room temperature is called for or vice versa can affect the texture and consistency of your dessert. Follow the recipe instructions to bring ingredients to the proper temperature, as specified, if necessary.