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What is the point of baking?

(426 Posts)
waitingforautumn Fri 26-Feb-21 15:40:23

OK to cover myself - I'm actually not a bad baker (promise! smile) my issue is that baking - while highly therapeutic, is not necessarily cheap, and it leaves you with a commitment to eating the baked good all week!! (doesn't sound like a bad thing does it...). Cakes in particular are quite hard to scale down.

AIBU to just prefer a supermarket / cafe slice of cake etc to spare myself the faff and expense of baking, and the smaller/individual portion sizes?! I know they are rarely as good as the home baked kind but some of them can be very decent. I get FOMO for not baking when a lot of friends and family do it - they make it look so fun and rewarding! Yet when I bake I totally lose interest in the final product after I've had one portion.

I spent a large chunk of last weekend baking a half size chocolate cake (it could still feed 10 tbh!), and by the end I just wish I'd gone to M&S lol. Especially now, 4 days later, when the fam are all bored of it and the remainder of this cake is just sitting there uneaten, getting drier and drier every day... yet we all feel too guilty to throw it away. It wasn't a very nice recipe actually. Not chocolatey enough and was on the dry side to begin with. But thats just part of the risk of trying a new recipe I suppose.

Or am I just missing the point of baking???? Is it supposed to be something people only do when feeding a crowd? How often do you bake and why do you do it? Does it all get eaten?? If you crave something in particular are you more likely to bake it or go out and buy it?

OP’s posts: |
Loopyloututu2 Fri 26-Feb-21 15:42:42

I absolutely agree. The few times I’ve baked it’s tasted ok but nothing like a shop-bought cake. Tbh even the efforts of friends who are considered really good bakers just don’t do it for me as much as a shop bought banana loaf or lemon drizzle! And when you can buy one for a few quid from Waitrose why go to the effort and expense?

I guess some people just enjoy the process and find it therapeutic - I’d rather paint my nails!

BrumBoo Fri 26-Feb-21 15:46:06

I've never got baking either, but I don't really care for cakes or fruity things, and having worked in a bakery the smell of bread baking turns my stomach. I love fresh bread, but honestly the baking smell gives me a headache. I like pastries, but only as an occasional treat, so maybe I'll get a vanilla crown from whatever supermarket bakery I'm in once a month.

I enjoy 'proper' cooking a lot more, but unfortunately have a family of utter fusspots so I rarely get to try anything new sad.

CCSS15 Fri 26-Feb-21 15:46:15

Not necessarily the point but you can freeze cake! Found this a game changer in the past year with giant birthday cakes and no extra family to share with - also comes out moister if a bit dry in the first place

Ihopeyourcakeisshit Fri 26-Feb-21 15:46:58

There's no way a home made cake would be hanging around for 4 days in my house.
Perhaps you should stick to painting your nails, maybe your cakes aren't that great😜

Saucery Fri 26-Feb-21 15:47:32

I scale down things like chocolate cake, sponge etc (make one circular one, halve it). I also look for things I can do a whole one of, like a tea loaf, brownies, flat carrot cake etc and freeze half.

Pangur2 Fri 26-Feb-21 15:48:49

You need to get into mug cakes, haha.

Hardbackwriter Fri 26-Feb-21 15:49:25

I don't realise recognise this world where people get bored of home made cake, maybe if I lived there I would agree with you! In my house the sole argument against baking is that it's bad for us because we all eat it too fast...

And I am shock at the people claiming that shop-bought cake is nicer - in my experience, mediocre homemade cake is much better than good shop-bought unless we're talking about the sort of shop where it's individually made by a person not a production line, in which case it is likely to be lovely but prohibitively expensive.

Hardbackwriter Fri 26-Feb-21 15:51:09

I actually do think chocolate cake is quite tricky to get right - they often come out dry - so if you're not a frequent baker you may have set yourself up for failure a bit there. Brownies are much more foolproof.

Loopyloututu2 Fri 26-Feb-21 15:51:59

*Perhaps you should stick to painting your nails, maybe your cakes aren't that great*😜

Maybe your family just eat yours because you don’t buy shop bought ones and it’s better than nothing grin - I have a friend like this - she insists on baking all her own bread, cakes biscuits. They are really very mediocre but she considers herself a great baker! Her poor family always look a bit thin and miserable and last time I took her dd out she couldn’t contain her excitement at being bought a brownie from Costa!

Oh well, I admit I’m no Mary berry but at least I have fabulous nails!

CuriousaboutSamphire Fri 26-Feb-21 15:52:12


Can't stand shop bought cakes. Far too sweet and have all sorts of added flavourings that all taste chemically to me. Apparently you either can or cannot taste them, a bit like smelling asparagus/sugar puff wee!

There are only two of us, so I freeze a lot back. Half for now, half for next month. So I usually have the equivalent of 2 bakes in the freezer.

AlexaShutUp Fri 26-Feb-21 15:52:35

Hmm, I half agree with you because I usually can't be arsed to bake, but shop bought cakes are nowhere near as tasty, and it isn't exactly easy to get to a decent cafe right now.

I'm in the happy position now that my teenage dd really loves to bake, finds it very therapeutic and is actually a much better baker than I have ever been. I am more than happy to consume her creations!grin

PickAChew Fri 26-Feb-21 15:53:16

Supermarket cake is rank. And I have teenagers so actually have to hide the cake if I want it to last more than a day.

TallFriendlyGinger Fri 26-Feb-21 15:53:22

I love baking I really enjoy cooking and making things. The process itself is rewarding, and the results are usually tasty. I much prefer the taste of something I make at home to what I can buy in the shops, and I get to improve my skills and techniques. My only problem is there's usually too much to eat so I feel a bit bad eating it but I usually offload on friends, family, or colleagues smile

Helocariad Fri 26-Feb-21 15:53:53

I get you, OP. I think baking is only worth it if you actually like the process of doing it. I love it, it relaxes me, it's something to do with my DC who enjoy it.
Also, while not healthy per se, home-baked cakes are still healthier than processed supermarket-bought cakes, so I prefer my DC eat the results of our baking.

MissConductUS Fri 26-Feb-21 15:54:25

Some things I buy, some things I bake. There's a posh bakery in my town, so I get all of our birthday cakes there. They are much better than any cake I would bake.

Cookies and brownies I make at home. They are easy and the fact that they are homemade adds something special. So it's not one size fits all.

Itsokthanks Fri 26-Feb-21 15:54:31

Because homemade cakes are always much nicer than shop bought. House of 5 people here so it's cheaper than buying them and we have the opposite problem of having to eat it for a week, usually lasts 2-3 days max.

nokidshere Fri 26-Feb-21 15:55:09

I bake lots. With teenagers in the house they don't usually last the afternoon let alone a week. However, cake can be frozen, defrosts really quickly and retains its freshness really well. So maybe bake once and freeze into individual portions for later?

Thehawki Fri 26-Feb-21 15:55:55

This is why I like to bake things that you can make really rich like brownies (the ones I make have only ever been replicated in very fancy coffee shops, not the same as Tesco at all!!) or cookies and muffins. Anything easy to half. I’ve found that freezing your cakes make them more moist, I like to cut the whole cake up and freeze half for later and it’s always nicer after freezing. There’s only two of us so I don’t like to make more than I need.

Norwaydidnthappen Fri 26-Feb-21 15:56:34

I personally think homemade cakes and cookies taste a lot better than shop bought but that’s just me. I don’t think baking is necessarily expensive either because things like flour, baking powder, sugar etc last a long time. It’s not like you buy a bag of flour and sugar and use it all on one cake.

TallFriendlyGinger Fri 26-Feb-21 15:57:48

And loopylou you don't sound like a very nice friend 😂 bit rude there!

sirfredfredgeorge Fri 26-Feb-21 15:58:05

Half a cake last a family (at least 2 people, probably more given the "we all" rather than "we"?) more than 4 days, is this another competitive under eating thread?

haba Fri 26-Feb-21 15:59:00

Read the ingredients on your shop-bought cake- loads of stuff in there that just isn't in very high end bought cakes or home made.
Baking is about more than just cake though...

Scones and muffins are actually very easy to do just one or two servings per person.

Meowchickameowmeow Fri 26-Feb-21 15:59:31

I remember my mum spending whole days baking when we were growing up, we'd come home from school and the kitchen would smell delicious. I had three brothers and a dad that made short work of eating everything though so she got a great deal of enjoyment from it.
For myself, I don't enjoy baking/cooking, I find it stressful and hate the mess. I also don't like cake that much.

notanothertakeaway Fri 26-Feb-21 16:00:48

I make chocolate brownie, cut it into strips and freeze the strips separately

I make cookie dough, roll it into balls, and freeze them

If I make a chocolate cake, I freeze half for another time

Home made baking is almost always better than shop bought

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