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28
votes
3answers
1k views

Why are baking measurements such nice round numbers?

I've heard over and over that when it comes to baking, measurements cannot be ignored, and you need to be very precise. This question covers how precise a measurement of flour should be, for example. ...
25
votes
6answers
148k views

How much juice is in a lemon?

A lot of recipes call for the "juice of a lemon". I keep a bottle of lemon juice in the fridge as this is easier, cheaper and more convenient than buying lemons all the time but my problem is I never ...
17
votes
3answers
918 views

Cups v. weighing scales - is there an historical explanation?

Broadly speaking UK recipes will specify amounts by weight (lbs/ounces or metric), whereas American recipes will specify amounts by volume (cups). Is there an explanation for how the two different ...
17
votes
3answers
6k views

What job is the fat doing when I prepare bread dough, and what to expect if I use the wrong amount?

I've been baking bread for years and no longer really measure the ingredients. But I'm no expert on the science of what I'm doing. I add fat (lard) because I've always added fat. What job does the ...
15
votes
4answers
2k views

Do I need to sift flour that is labeled sifted?

Is there really an advantage to sifting flour that I bought that was labeled 'sifted'?
13
votes
6answers
619 views

Cup measurements: shake or scrape?

When you are measuring out your flour, sugar, etc with the measuring cups, is it better to scoop and then shake the cup to get a leveled cup, or scoop and then use a knife to scrape off the excess. ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I convert between the various measurements?

I found a recipe that's using one or more measurements that I don't recognize. How can I convert it to a unit that I use locally? Alternative question template: (to improve searchability): How can ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Is baking by weight really more accurate?

It's gospel among serious bakers that measuring by weight is far more accurate than measuring by volume. However, I'm not sure that measuring by weight helps at all when you have varying humidity ...
12
votes
5answers
31k views

How much is a knob of butter?

I was reading a question here on Food and Cooking and no one seemed to know how much it is. I tried to Google convert it to cups but no dice. So how much is it?
12
votes
3answers
8k views

What does “spooned and leveled” mean?

I'm looking at a recipe that lists the following as an ingredient: 1 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled) What exactly does this mean? Is this literal - i.e. spoon it into the measuring ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Why buy a more expensive kitchen scale

It seems about time for me to give in to peer pressure and get a kitchen scale like everyone else. It seems like they would give my cooking more consistency if nothing else. I've payed attention to ...
11
votes
2answers
59k views

Is a “cup” on a coffee maker always 6 oz? Is this a standard in the US?

Our coffee maker instructions often refer to a "cup" of coffee. These cups are whats marked on the side of the coffee maker showing how much water is in the reservoir. The instructions never define ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

When a recipe calls for a cup of chopped nuts, should they be measured before chopping or after chopping?

It seems like it would throw off recipe since you can fit more in once they are chopped?
10
votes
4answers
6k views

Can I weigh without a set of scales?

So I'm at my sister's house, and it turns out she doesn't have any scales. I need to weigh 120g of castor sugar. What can I do?
10
votes
1answer
590 views

Is steam lost in boiling negligible?

If I bring 20 ounces of water (2.5 cups) to boil in a kettle, and promptly remove it from the heat, is the amount of water lost (by volume/mass) a negligible quantity? To be more precise about my ...
9
votes
3answers
279 views

Where to learn what ratios to use in cooking?

I am learning to cook. I want to know whether there is a good resource at what ratios of ingredients to use when I am cooking. Thank You. :)
9
votes
1answer
621 views

How to measure food acidity

I am asking about a method or a trick to measure (or guess) how acidic is food. Please don't suggest any expensive tool; this will be for home usage only.
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Standard weight conversions for converting cups of flour to grams of flour?

I hate the idea of measuring flour using something as imprecise as measuring scoop. What numbers do you treat as definitive/authoritative/canonical for doing weight conversions for different types of ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I adjust a recipe for different grades/brands/types of gelatin?

I'm trying to reproducibly make a specific jelly recipe. How can I achieve consistent results, using different grades/brands/types of gelatin? Depending on what I can find in grocers nearby, I may ...
8
votes
1answer
35k views

What is the conversion rate between dry beans to cans of beans?

A recipe calls for a can (15oz) of cooked beans. How many cups or oz's is that to dry beans? Is this conversion even possible to estimate given that beans differ in amount of water absorption?
8
votes
2answers
22k views

How much is a bunch of spinach?

I have some recipies for green smoothies, where some of the ingredients are for example "1 bunch of spinach" or "1/2 bunch of spinach". The spinach I've found in the store are usually fresh leaves ...
7
votes
4answers
331 views

Any advice to help me form and shape stuff more uniformly?

I get frustrated by recipes which call for the cook to shape or form little balls out of a dough or cake or biscuit mix. The recipe will say something like "form into little walnut sized balls ... ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

Measuring glucose syrup without wasting it

Glucose syrup is a liquid sweetener used in a lot of candy making. Unfortunately, it is incredibly thick which makes it difficult to measure. Imagine corn syrup except about three times thicker. When ...
6
votes
3answers
20k views

Converting teaspoon/tablespoon measurements to mL? [duplicate]

I have been looking at curry recipes on an American web site and it gives measurements in teaspoons and tablespoons. I am not familiar with these measurements as we do not use them locally. Does ...
6
votes
5answers
49k views

Best way to measure Spaghetti/Linguini portions?

What's the best way to measure how much Spaghetti/Linguini is 1-portion. I know there are tools which basically measures the diameter of the bundle of dry spaghetti. But are there simpler tricks which ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

Tripling a baking recipe

I have a cupcake recipe that I've doubled successfully in the past. I'd like to triple it for an upcoming party but I seem to recall reading that some ingredients don't work as well if tripled. Is ...
6
votes
3answers
11k views

What is the correct flour, sugar, butter ratio for crumble?

Looking through a number of fruit crumble recipes I see that there is a wide range of ratios used for crumble topping. Some use equal amounts of flour (or other dry ingredient), sugar and butter. ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the definition of a cup of coffee

My wife and I had a discussion in regards of my consumption of coffee during office hours. Health gurus always talk about a maximum amount of coffee during a day - measured in cups! But what is the ...
6
votes
2answers
249 views

Need help reconciling quantities in this recipe

Here's a recipe from a package of chocolate chips (edited, but not substantively): 2¼ cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed ½ cup ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

What Kinds of Recipes Should I Sift/Aerate The Flour?

We've talked about methods for sifting flour (http://cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/5364/how-to-make-sifting-palatable), and the purposes of sifting ...
6
votes
1answer
393 views

When used for measuring ingredients in cooking what is the difference between a “dry ounce” and a “liquid ounce”?

I've seen numerous recipes that call for measuring "liquid ounce" but at the same time telling you to measure something like flour as "dry ounce" - I've even seen references to "fluid ounces". Are ...
5
votes
2answers
322 views

How to know how salty is my soup without tasting?

This is a sister to this question. I need a method or a trick to measure (or guess) how saline is my food using normal tools or substances available on the super-market Any help?
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How to measure a cup of “solid” ingredient?

I was reading a recipe in which it was mentioned among the ingredients "8 cups of broccoli florets". Measuring by "cups" is for liquids, right? For solid ingredients, are we measuring the "weight" of ...
5
votes
2answers
18k views

What is the substitution ratio for mini marshmallows to large marshmallows?

I have a recipe calling for 12 large marshmallows, but I only have minis. How many should I use?
5
votes
1answer
204 views

How much yeast is in a “package”?

Our Better Homes and Gardens cookbook calls for "1 package active dry yeast" in its pizza recipe, which is less than helpful, since we keep a container of bulk yeast in the freezer. What is the ...
5
votes
1answer
428 views

Big Chicken vs Small Chicken: weight and stuffing volume ratios

I need to adjust a recipe for a stuffed chicken. The recipe calls for a 2kg chicken, and say W grams of stuffing. Now I plan on buying a smaller chicken because it's for less people, how can I ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

How many milliliters is a “pinch?”

I found a recipe in English that mentions a "pinch" of something. English is not my first language, and Google shows that "pinch" has many meanings. Do I have to pinch it with my fingers, or can i ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How to tell the proper amount of oil to use when sautéing vegetables and meat?

A common meal That I make in a pinch is Italian sausage with peppers and onions. I'll cut up a few red and yellow peppers, a whole onion, and throw it in a pan with some olive oil. Once the vegetables ...
4
votes
3answers
271 views

Do cooks in the US measure volume using 'traditional' or 'legal' units?

The wikipedia article for the cup unit identifies two different measures used in the US: a legal cup of 240ml and a customary cup of ~236.588ml. Similarly, the tablespoon and teaspoon articles ...
4
votes
1answer
179 views

Are cooking show minutes really minutes?

I've noticed that cooking show inches are not very accurate. I can usually see that the "half inch slices" called for by the chef are no where near that, which is fine, since I can see the thickness ...
4
votes
2answers
206 views

Ambiguities in Gravlax recipe

I am going to make Gravlax and found the following recipe: http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2011/11/30/chef-hamid-salmon-gravlax/ Ingredient list: 2 or 3 salmon fillets, deboned with skin on 2 lemon, ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Did tomato paste come in only one size of can in the 1950s?

I found an old cookery book while on holiday at the german coast, it was published by Peter Pauper press, Mt. Vernon, New York in 1959. All recipes that use tomato paste just say "1/2 can tomato ...
4
votes
2answers
337 views

Baker percentages, weights, volumes, and such

So a basic bread recipe might look like (off top of head, not sure if these amounts make any sense) 100 Bread Flour 30 Water 1 oil .... I know the flour is in weight ounces, but often times in ...
4
votes
2answers
763 views

How much is a “scoop” of vanilla sugar?

I've seen a lot of recipes that call for a "scoop" of vanilla sugar. I know that this refers to the little scoop that comes with most vanilla sugar containers. However, I live in a country that sells ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How accurate are kitchen scales?

I read about weighing coffee to the 0.5 gram, but what's the margin of error for a typical 5kg/11lb kitchen scale?
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What to do when too much liquid added to flour mixture?

I seem to have a bad habit of mis-calculating ingredients, particularly the liquid ones. Can I just boil off excess water that I've added to a flour mixture (in this case a pizza dough)? Any other ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Measuring egg whites

I recently made macaroons for the first time and followed the instructions to the T and they were perfect! The recipe called for exactly 90 grams of egg whites.. I then made them again but the egg ...
3
votes
3answers
614 views

What general rules should I follow to ensure that my measurements are accurate?

Can technique really make big enough difference to effect the final result? There are already excellent questions and answers here regarding specific measuring issues Cup measurements: shake or ...
3
votes
2answers
287 views

Do recipes which measure flour by volume assume that I'll sift the flour?

I would like to try some baking recipes where the flour is specified by volume, with no alternative measurement for weight. Do recipe authors generally assume that I'll sift the flour to measure it?
3
votes
4answers
4k views

Why is a tablespoon defined as 20mL in Australia?

In Australia, a tablespoon is defined as 20mL whereas it is 15mL in nearly all other countries. I'm interested to know where this comes from, and also what other Australian people do about this ...