Since I haven’t cooked anything more complicated than bacon and eggs this week, I thought it would be good to reprint a guest post I did for Recipelion.com a few months ago. I’ll have some new recipes posted soon.
There are a handful of recipe sites that I peruse periodically to get inspiration when I want a sweet treat. I particularly enjoy sites that allow readers to leave comments and rate recipes. When someone leaves a bad review for a recipe with a list of 4 or 5 changes, I always cringe. Many bakers don’t realize there is a lot of chemistry happening when baking cakes, cookies, and breads. Seemingly small changes to a recipe can drastically change the end result.
Here are five recipe changes to beware of when baking:
- Reducing the amount of sugar – Sugar helps cakes and cookies retain moisture during baking. Reducing the amount of sugar in a batter not only reduces the sweetness but it can cause your baked good to be dry.
- Changing the type of flour – all flours are definitely not created equally. Different types of flours contain different amounts of protein, which determine the texture and crumb. Low protein flours like cake and pastry flour produce very different results than high protein flour like bread flour.
- Using a different size pan – Changing the size of pan that a recipe indicates increases or reduces the amount of surface area directly exposed to the heat. Increasing the surface area causes the food to cook faster. Decreasing the surface are causes food to cook slower. You can end up with an over cooked cake or a cake that isn’t done in the middle.