It’s Wednesday, so here’s the next installment in our better baking series. We hope that these tips & tricks will help you to bake it better! This week, we’re talking about recipes that call for room-temperature vs. cold ingredients & why it’s so important that you follow those instructions.
When a recipe specifies room-temperature butter, eggs & dairy – it’s for good reason. When baking a cake, creaming room-temperature butter with sugar gives that light & fluffy whipped texture that means you’ve done it right. It would be impossible to cream sugar with rock hard butter & get anything but a lumpy mass. It’ll just knock around in your mixing bowl, butter that’s missed its true calling in life.
You want to use room-temperature butter – so when you prod it with a finger, it will dent in, but still, hold its shape (stick or block). The same is said for your eggs & milk when you’re working with these ingredients in the recipe, you want them to emulsify nicely & thoroughly combine. This will ensure your batter has a smooth texture & uniform structure throughout. Bake that batter up & you’ll be very proud of the result!
When a recipe calls for room-temperature egg whites (think meringue or as part of another recipe), it’s imperative that you follow this instruction. At room-temperature, egg whites beat up much better – they add much more volume to the batter & can also result in perfect meringue cookies.
It is important to note that butter that is too warm can also affect your recipe. It can result in greasy pie crusts, cookies that spread/don’t hold their shape & cakes that don’t rise well.
Sometimes, a recipe will specify that you use cold butter. This is typical when baking pie crust, scones & biscuits. The dough will need to have cold butter cut into/rubbed in & this essential for achieving the best texture. Think of a crispy, light & flaky pastry or pie crust – using butter that’s too warm will turn that dough into a flat & greasy crust…not ideal.
If you missed it, click here for last week’s blog post in the Better Baking Series!
The SoBakeable Team