The “Holiday Season” starts at different times depending on who you ask. Some will say it officially starts on Thanksgiving, while others may claim it starts when the leaves begin to fall. Here at SATECH, Inc. we tend to fall in the middle. Once Daylight Saving Time hits, we get into the holiday spirit.
Now don’t get us wrong. We give the turkey all the respect it deserves and hold off on Christmas music until after Thanksgiving. But we have been known to get our Christmas shopping done early and do some holiday baking. After all, isn’t holiday baking one of the best parts of the season?
Just typing this makes us hungry. Pumpkin pie, cinnamon rolls, holiday cookies, chex mix, the list of holiday baked goods goes on forever.
To help you get ready for a season of successful holiday baking we have compiled our 8 tips for Holiday Baking Success.
If you’re a veteran baker, keep reading for a refresher. If you’re a rookie baker, settle in and take some notes. After this article you will be well on your way to Holiday Baking Silver Star Status.
Ok, we made that up, but you will be on your way to wowing all your friends with your newfound baking skills.
Climate Control: Watch Your Temps
Everyone knows that most holiday goods bake at different temperatures, but did you know that the temperature in which you prep the baked good matters too? For example, to get a flaky pie crust, you need to ensure all your ingredients are super cold. Experts say you should even chill the mixing bowl. On the flip side, if you’re baking a cake, make sure all your ingredients are room temperature for best results.
One final note on temperature: When baking, keep the oven door closed. Frequently opening the door will make the temperature vary and affect the outcome.
Nothing is worse than getting half way through a recipe and realizing you’re missing an ingredient. Before you start mixing ingredients willy-nilly make sure you get organized. Start with making a list of the recipes you want to bake and the ingredients you need. Great, you have all the ingredients in your pantry. Before going any further make sure you have enough of each ingredient. Now you’re ready to bake.
Don’t Forget to Measure
Baking is essentially food science. You need to make sure you measure each ingredient properly in order to get the expected result. For wet ingredients, measure them in a glass or plastic measuring cup. When measuring dry ingredients, use a spoon to scoop the ingredient into the measuring cup then sweep a knife or straight edge across to the top to remove the excess.
Let it Dough
Chances are, one of the baked goods on your list to make is cookies. When making cookies the professionals recommend that you chill the dough in the fridge for 2-4 hours. This gives the ingredient flavors a chance to come together and enhance the overall taste.
Prep your Pans
Prepping your pans is just as important as making sure you measure the right amount of ingredients. Afterall, you don’t want your baked good to get stuck in the pan. So here’s what professional baker Ann Burrell recommends:
- If you want easy cleanup: Use parchment paper
- Whether you’re using a nonstick pan or not, you should grease it with pan spray or butter
- To remove cakes from pans easily, spray it with pan spray then add flour or parchment paper for easy cake removal
Drop That Knife
In my house, we subscribe to the “as long as it tastes good, it doesn’t matter if its ugly” mentality for baked goods. However, it’s always nice when a dessert looks as good as it tastes. For desserts like pies or cinnamon rolls, it is recommended that you refrain from cutting them with a knife if possible. Instead, use a length of unflavored dental floss. The floss allows nice, clean cuts and ensures a good presentation.
Write it Down
As you’re baking, take notes of any changes you make to recipes so that if you like it, you can use it in the future. It is also helpful to keep track of all your favorite recipes in case someone asks you for it. This article on Life Hacker (Click Here) has a great list of apps you can use to track your recipes.
Make it a Tradition
The holidays are all about spending time with the ones we love. Instead of simply baking alone, make it a tradition and bake with your loved ones. The memories made will be sweeter than the treats baked in the process, we can guarantee it.
Bonus Tip: Invest in a SmartCells SlimLine Mat
As we all know, standing on a hard floor in the kitchen can be painful and greatly diminishes the amount of fun you have baking.
Luckily for you, we just released a new kitchen anti-fatigue mat that makes standing in the kitchen a lot more enjoyable.
Featuring a lower profile, ⅜ inch height, and a stylish basket weave surface, the all-new SmartCells SlimLine mats utilize the same trusted cushioning technology as our industrial products but in a package that is lighter and tailored for residential and office use.
The optimized design of SmartCells SlimLine mats offer a stable surface over cylindrical cells which become softer under impact and resist bottoming out, this creates the perfect balance for maximum comfort while standing in a kitchen.
The SmartCells are spring-like, in that they cushion as weight is applied, then rebound when the weight shifts, which returns energy and reduces fatigue.
In addition to the unique cushioning technology, thanks to their rubber-based construction, SmartCells SlimLine mats will not absorb liquid and are easy to clean.
The SmartCells Anti-fatigue SlimLine mats are available in three colors, come in a convenient 2’X3’ size, and are protected with a 4-year warranty. Click the button below to order your SmartCells SlimLine mat today.
SmartCells: Solutions to Life’s Painful Problems.