Project not going right? Check here for baking issues that I run into durring my weekly recipes. Hopefully you can find one that helps!

Baking How To:

Wake Up Yeast: 
First, what kind of yeast do you have? If it is instant yeast, you do not have to wake it up, simply add it to your dry ingredients. If you have active dry yeast, you will need to "wake it up."
Use the amount of water called for in your recipe and make sure it is 100-110 degrees F. Stir in a pinch of sugar, and stir to dissolve. Add the yeast and stir quickly until all of the clumps are gone. Cover with a towel and let sit for 7 to 10 minutes until foamy.
Note: If your bowl is resting on a cold counter, it may bring the water temperature below 100 degrees F. Place a potholder or towel under the bowl to prevent this from happening.

Make Caster Sugar:
This is a very simple method for making caster sugar. Simply put the amount of granulated sugar needed into a coffee grinder, and pulse 2 to 3 times. Leave the cover on for about one minute to let the sugar dust settle.

Not Over Whip Egg Whites:
Whip on medium speed until the whites until slightly foamy. Add 1 to 2 Tablespoons of sugar into the whites and increase speed to high. The sugar will help stabilize the whites, so they are harder to over whip.

Fill and Hold a Pastry Bag:
Take the bag and turn 2 to 3 inches of the open edge inside out. Using the folded material as a handle, place the bag on you non-dominate hand. Using a spatula, place filling into the bag, scraping against the hand holding up the bag. Flip up the folded material, and push down filling so there is enough room to twist the bag. Twist the end to the bag and place the twisted end between your thumb and index finger of your dominate hand. Apply pressure with this hand only, using the other hand as only a guide if necessary. 

Strain Ricotta Cheese Quickly:
Working with about 1 cup of ricotta cheese at a time, place cheese onto two paper towels. Cover with two more paper towels and press down into the ricotta. Continue to move around or change paper towels while pressing cheese. Continue until most of the moisture is out of the ricotta and the cheese is dense.

Don't see what you're stressing over? Email me at: thesundaypastry@gmail.com with a baking question.

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