Questions about cooking by dry heat without direct exposure to a flame, typically in an oven.

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Factors affecting meringue crispness

I've read the other questions on meringue but didn't find the answer I'm looking for. When making meringue, there are basically three types that form: Crisp shells will a uniform texture throughout. ...
4
votes
3answers
34k views

Why don't my muffins rise and develop tops properly?

I would like to make muffins that have that "spilled over" look that shop bought muffins have, but no matter what I do, the ones I make always look flat or only just reach the top of the paper cases. ...
3
votes
1answer
117 views

Effect of undutched cocoa on baking

I'm trying to add unsweetened non-dutched cocoa powder to a biscotti recipe (this one). I've read that this type of cocoa is strongly acidic. Will I need to make any changes to the quantities of ...
3
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2answers
289 views

What is the name of this dish involving fruit & sugar - blended and baked thin and flat?

I don't know what it is I'm doing (IE, the name of the technique or dish) I can't research it. I cook either rhubarb or passion fruit with a few tablespoons of sugar, blend until very smooth, ...
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4answers
4k views

Having trouble getting gluten free bread to rise

I am new to gluten free baking and I am having much trouble getting my breads to rise. I have tried several recipes, with no luck. Can anybody give me some fool proof suggestions? I am desperate. ...
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4answers
2k views

Technique to bake donair meat in an oven

Every time I cook Donair at home, it seems to dry up a lot faster than when I do it in the restaurant. Granted I use the same spice mix and meat mixing method. The difference is that at the ...
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1answer
63 views

Dishwasher safe bakeware?

The few times I've placed a standard muffin pan (or other bakeware) in the dishwasher I've regretted it. The pans end up with spots of rust remarkably quickly. What kind of materials/finishes are ...
1
vote
1answer
6k views

How to minimise sugar in meringue

My wife just complained that she can't eat my meringue because they have too much sugar in them. She suggested I cook them with less sugar. However, without sugar the meringue won't work right. What ...
15
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3answers
17k views

How can I identify dutch process cocoa?

I have a hard time finding "dutch process cocoa" in the store sometimes. What other names might dutch process cocoa be known as? Is there something else in the ingredients that might identify ...
15
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2answers
62k views

Can I always use butter instead of margarine when baking?

Some recipes says use butter or margarine, some say use butter and some say use margarine. My question is, can I always use butter or does margarine have some property that butter doesn't when baking? ...
12
votes
4answers
29k views

Why don't my cookies flatten?

I have baked Betty Crocker's Giant Honey and Oat Cookies three or four times now, and every time, my cookies do not spread out, I just get thick cookies. Is there something I am doing wrong? As far as ...
12
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4answers
5k views

Is there a way to prevent my Fruit Pie from getting runny?

Is there a way to firm up the consistency of a fresh fruit pie (like peach or apple) - sometimes it gets too "runny"?
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6answers
10k views

Why is there vinegar in the bread recipe?

Yesterday I made bread based on a recipe I found on the flour bag. It contained both rye and wheat flour but also three tablespoons of vinegar. I've never seen it used in bread before, why is it ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

When adding vital wheat gluten to a bread recipe, should one reduce the amount of flour equal to it?

I've always thought that the rule of thumb for adding vital wheat gluten to a bread recipe was to add one tablespoon of it per cup of flour called for. A friend is telling me that rather than do that, ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

What differences, practical and aesthetic, are there between egg washes?

An egg wash can be done in six major variations: [with | out egg white] mixed with [water | milk | cream]. My first hit when searching 'egg wash ratio' My Persian Kitchen where the use was for ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

What are good techniques for getting gluten free bread to rise?

I make gluten free bread in a bread maker, however I can never get it to rise as much as 'regular' bread and is usually a little heavy. What techniques/recipes/substitutions can I try to get my gluten ...
9
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4answers
5k views

How to make pizza crust thin and elastic at the same time?

For the title: I'm not sure if "elastic" is the perfect word here, so is anyone knows better one - put it in the comment. I like thin pizza crust, but when I've made it myself it was hard and stiff - ...
8
votes
1answer
393 views

What is the best technique to put icing on plastic?

I'm going to attempt to do is bake a cake for my daughter's first birthday. The cake is going to be based on this recipe, but I want it to look more like this one. Now if you look at the 2nd link, it ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Why do some pie crust recipes include vinegar?

I experiment some with pie crusts and have seen recipes that include vinegar as well as eggs. What does the vinegar do and what does the egg do. I have heard the vinegar promotes tenderness but have ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I avoid windswept muffins in a convection oven?

I have a very small multi-function oven (about the size of a microwave) and for baking, the recommended setting is the "convection" one. Things bake fine in terms of taste, but muffins and cupcakes ...
8
votes
4answers
6k views

converting pure chocolate to “bittersweet” chocolate

A chocolate cookie recipe I'm looking at calls for melting down a cup of bittersweet chocolate chips. However, I happen to have a brick of completely unsweetened cooking chocolate in the fridge. Can I ...
7
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6answers
2k views

Baking naan without an oven?

Is it possible to make eggless naan without an oven?
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Cooking Chemistry: lemon juice/soymilk buttermilk substitute turning bitter and 'rising'

I made a soup recipe the other night (mainly potato, spinach, and veggie broth) that called for buttermilk. I substituted soymilk and lemon juice, reading online that that was a good substitution for ...
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2answers
6k views

What are macaron “feet”?

This question mentions macaron "feet". What are macaron feet?
7
votes
1answer
16k views

Fan bake vs bake

Are there any general rules to follow when choosing between bake and fan bake to cook something in the oven? What effect does each have and what are the advantages and disadvantages of both?
7
votes
3answers
4k views

How can I get brownies to bake evenly?

I can never get the middle of my brownies "done" without overbaking the outsides. The middle is tasty, but gooey. What is the secret?
7
votes
3answers
5k views

What is the purpose of baking soda in chocolate-chip cookies?

I thought baked goods which include baking soda should be put into oven immediately, otherwise they won't rise. But some cookie recipes call for cooling the dough in the fridge or even freezing it, ...
7
votes
6answers
3k views

Ingredients or techniques to a more solid lasagna

What are the crucial ingredients or cooking techniques to a more solid, or "brick" like lasagna? Most lasagna I've seen tends to get a bit sloppy in the pan as it's being dished out but I have seen ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

What are the best potatoes for baking?

What are the best varieties of potatoes to use for baking with a roast that will give a nice golden brown finish on the outside? [Edit: to clarify, I'm from Australia and we don't really distinguish ...
6
votes
1answer
259 views

Will double-action baking powder lose potency if not baked immediately?

I use double-action baking powder to make waffles. If I bake the waffles immediately, they rise nicely. However, if I bake the waffles more than 3 hours after making the batter, they don't rise as ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How accurate is the window pane test? (breadmaking)

I recently bought Michael Ruhlman's Ratio and started trying out baking. I knead my bread for about 10 to 15 minutes, but the window pane test (pulling a chunk of dough so that it's translucent ...
6
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2answers
2k views

Can I partially bake a pie?

I am planning on making a pie for my dad for father's day. I know when you buy most pies at the grocery store, you have to pop it in the oven for a few minutes to heat it up. Is it possible to do a ...
5
votes
2answers
751 views

How to make softer scones?

I used the scone recipe from here, but the scones turned out really hard and dry. What should I have done differently? More butter, more milk. Less cooking time? ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I clean this silicone tray?

I use this silicone muffin pan to cook things in the oven. It's supposed to be non-stick, but actually food sticks to it quite a lot. Often I can just scrape dried food off with my fingers, but it's ...
5
votes
1answer
260 views

What causes popovers to rise so much?

I recently made popovers and I knew they would 'pop over'. Yet, I was surprised they came that high. I'm curious how this is possible, since there is no yeast, baking powder, self-rising flour, beaten ...
4
votes
1answer
349 views

My meringue forms syrup beads on top

Every time I make a pie , topped with meringue , little beads of sugary syrup form on the top of the meringue a few hours later. Why?
4
votes
2answers
718 views

Can I use yogurt cheese in cheesecake by substituting the cream cheese?

It is very hard to find cream cheese or mascarpone where I live in India, so I just wanted to know whether I can make a cheesecake with yogurt cheese or not?
4
votes
2answers
423 views

Substituting hazelnuts for almonds, baking

I simply prefer hazelnuts to almonds, especially in sweet applications. I've been recently gifted with a pound of very nice bittersweet chocolate so I've decided to do America's Test Kitchen's Sacher ...
4
votes
2answers
219 views

Is it true that putting spices in something then baking it destroys the spices?

I heard that putting spices in something and putting it in the oven will eliminate the taste of the spices. Is this true? For example if I were to put spice in lasagna before putting it in the oven ...
4
votes
1answer
51k views

What can I substitute for vegetable oil in a recipe?

Is there something that I can use as a substitute for vegetable oil in a recipe? I'm actually making cornbread (I think it matters), and normally the recipe calls for 1/3 cup vegetable oil. ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Cooking cakes on asbestos mats

My mother tells me when she was young her mother would bake cakes on an asbestos mat inside a lidded electric frypan. I'd assume the practice is gone now because of the reputation of asbestos, but ...
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2answers
2k views

Do I need hard or soft brown sugar for brownies?

I found a recipe for brownies I want to try. It calls for 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar How can I recognize if they mean hard or soft brown sugar? And how much of a difference does it ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it possible to prevent a japanese cheesecake from deflating or sinking?

A japanese cheesecake is basically like a cheesecake fused with a spongecake. When i beat the egg whites they peak perfectly then i am required to get 1/3 of the egg white mixture and fold it into ...
4
votes
1answer
332 views

Optimal egg size?

Yesterday while making some pancakes I came to the realization that I may have been sabotaging recipes that call for eggs. For years I've always purchased the largest sized eggs I can get in the ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Why is my quiche soggy?

I have tried making the same quiche recipe twice, but both times it has turned out soggy. I whisked together 3 eggs, milk, half and half, and seasonings and poured it over the crust with ham and ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Greasing a pan with butter vs. with shortening

Is there any reason one should prefer one over the other? I've always used shortening (probably because that's what my mom always did), but my fiancee has always used butter. There's no significant ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Possible to over-knead dough?

It will be my first attempt to bake with yeast this weekend and I'm interested to know how you know when you have kneaded dough enough. Is it possible to over-knead dough? If it makes a difference ...
4
votes
0answers
435 views

What are alternate uses for leftover buttermilk? [closed]

Buttermilk is one of those pantry items that I buy for a specific recipe, then don't know what to do with the leftovers (and I think this is not uncommon). In my question about buttermilk in soda ...
4
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3answers
26k views

What is substitute for rum in baking?

Some cake recipes calls for rum, and there is none available. How to substitute? If possible, it should be non-alcoholic. Also, what is its role in baking or cooking?
4
votes
1answer
863 views

Should I be able to make a tarte tatin in a glass dish?

I saw a question about meatloaf in a pyrex dish, and one of the answers said that glass gets hotter than the metal when in the oven, which got me wondering. I made a tarte tatin but didn't have a ...