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Resolved to become amazing at baking-where do I start?

(28 Posts)
DarthNigel Fri 12-Jan-18 15:36:14

One of my New Years resolutions was to get very good at baking grin. I am a good cook but haven't done much baking (aside from basic fairy cakes when the DD's were little), and I'm rubbish at cakes.
Please share your best tips/fool proof recipes with me...I have So far made some passable ginger bread...

OP’s posts: |
ConjugalHoliday Fri 12-Jan-18 15:41:54

Decent scales and an oven thermometer. Follow the recipes. Not much can for wrong if you have these three nailed down.

ConjugalHoliday Fri 12-Jan-18 15:42:17

*go wrong

Crazy8 Fri 12-Jan-18 15:45:09

I always use Mary Berrys cake recipes and they come out brilliantly.

DarthNigel Fri 12-Jan-18 15:46:02

I have the scales. Will get the thermometer. Good idea as we have just moved and have a range thingy and it seems to cook ferociously!
What if cakes tins and things? Do I need a selection of sizes or what would you recommend?

OP’s posts: |
PrivateParkin Fri 12-Jan-18 15:54:12

Have a look at Mary Berry's Baking Bible OP. It has loads and loads of recipes, I agree with PP, they always work. At the front, there is a section on what tins/equipment you'll need/likely to use most.
Also: stork is great.

DarthNigel Fri 12-Jan-18 15:54:55

Thanks all-mary B it is!!

OP’s posts: |
AC14MUZ Fri 12-Jan-18 15:55:10

I'd just buy equipment as and when you need it depending on the recipe you want to try! It's easy to get carried away buying stuff (for me anyway!) an easy cake to make is a Victoria sponge, this always goes down well in our house. I bake several times a week and this is the most requested. Another good starting place is crumble, nice and easy but very warming especially this time of the year. Good luck! I love baking and I'm sure you will to!

Dementedswan Fri 12-Jan-18 15:56:16

Buy betty crockers cake kits and ready made icing blush

Luckingfovely Fri 12-Jan-18 16:01:50

No don't buy Betty Crocker!!

The sainted Mary Berry is all you need. This book taught me to bake, and I bake a lot.

Mary Berry's Ultimate Cake Book (Second Edition): Over 200 Classic Recipes

ConjugalHoliday Fri 12-Jan-18 18:17:26

Get some anodised aluminium cake tins. They are easy to get along with.

orangeblosssom Sun 25-Mar-18 15:56:49

Alan Silverwood cake tins are great.

ElizabethBennetismybestfriend Sun 01-Apr-18 18:08:09

Another vote for Mary Berry Baking Bible - the title says it all

TheLastNigel Sun 01-Apr-18 19:28:38

I got it! I'm still not very good at baking however, but I'm only 3 months in to my resolution so I've time to come good smile

kentgirl1 Sun 01-Apr-18 19:34:58

Get. 6 inch cake tin (at least 3 inches deep so you get a good rise) and go from there. Just keep adding bits as you need them.
Shewhobakes is also great for recipes. Mary berry cupcakes are amazing!!

BlueSkyBurningBright Fri 06-Apr-18 20:29:03

I used to make dreadful cakes. I was bought the primrose baking book. It was great and now my cakes are lovely. I also find the Hummingbird books are good.

The trick is to read the recipe through before you start and follow the recipe carefully.

With regard to equipment, you will need:

A stand mixer or an electric hand mixer.
20cm cake tins x 2
2lb loaf tin
Cupcake tray
Cupcakes liners
Lakeland baking liners
Electric scales

With those you will be able to make Victoria sponges of various flavours, any loaf cake and cupcakes and muffins. Then if you develop your repertoire you can buy more equipment.

MyRelationshipIsWeird Fri 06-Apr-18 20:31:26

If you want to make big cakes get two of whichever tin you buy. I ended up with slightly differently sized ones as I’d bought them separately, which made sandwiching them together tricky. Buy one or two sizes/shapes in pairs!

PandaPieForTea Fri 06-Apr-18 20:31:41

Choose one cake and perfect it before moving onto another. I’d start with ‘the perfect chocolate cake’.

MyRelationshipIsWeird Fri 06-Apr-18 20:32:35

Also - personal preference - make more layers rather than fewer thick layers. Deep cakes take longer to cook through so can be dry, as the outside has had so long. Making more layers of regular depth cakes means more filling too smile

Wigeon Fri 06-Apr-18 20:36:00

I’d get: silicon muffin tray, 2 x 18cm cake tins with loose bottoms, 1lb loaf tin. A square or rectangular tin for traybakes. Possibly a springform tin. I basically do about 80% of my baking in those!

Then choose recipes to cook which you really love to eat. So for me that’s: muffins (all kinds, very easy), banana loaf, brownies, cinnamon buns, bakewell tart. Oh, and biscuits (all kinds!). And flapjack (look up Spupdragon’s recipe on here - perfect flapjack. Omit the Demerara as too sweet with that). But your list might well be different. BBC Good Food online is excellent for v good recipes for pretty much anything you can think of.

Good luck! It’s lots of fun.

Jenijena Fri 06-Apr-18 20:36:42

When the first stage of a recipe says bear sugar and butter together til light and fluffy, beat it for much longer than you expect to.

It’s old school but the BeRo cook book has been a cheap kitchen staple for years.

HopeAndJoy16 Fri 06-Apr-18 20:38:20

A cake tester (or BBQ skewers) for checking your cake is baked!
My cakes are distinctly average and it's so annoying, I'm trying really hard to improve so I don't really have much advice. I do a good banana loaf though (and a chocolate banana loaf which is divine). I like the recipes from the blog Smitten Kitchen, I've used her recipe for Best Cococa Brownies which have always come out perfectly

SecretNutellaFix Fri 06-Apr-18 20:46:11

Equipment lists already posted are fairly comprehensive. I would add a loose bottomed/ springform square pan though.

Go for decent gel colours rather than liquid colouring- a tiny bit goes a very long way!

Make sure all your ingredients are room temperature before starting though- refrigerated eggs don't tend to whisk quite as well, I've found.

soupforbrains Fri 06-Apr-18 20:55:05

I decided I was going to bake a dry elaborate birthday cake for my DS when he was 4. This was after not having baked since being kicked out of Home Ec at school.

I plunged myself in and just carefully followed the recipes and have become very competent. I'm now the 'go to' baker for my family, friends and colleagues and do small commissions when I have time.

I have learned to live by the mantra WWMBD - What Would Mary Berry Do.

Her recipes are far and away the most reliable. Me once you become competent and confident you'll be able to start adapting and developing your own.

Good luck! Baking is my therapy.

Notmybag Tue 10-Apr-18 15:18:22

My baking improved a lot after I started to use a kenwood chef stand mixer. It makes things much lighter. Excellent for creaming and making icing

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