Last week, a lovely woman named Ellen reached out to us and said that they purchased the Kiss My Bundt cookbook and had a few baking questions they hoped I could answer. Given their questions are some that I am often asked in my baking classes, I’m sharing the answers here with the hope it helps someone else!
Don’t Forget: My next Baking Class is taking place on December 1, 2018 in Berkeley California at Kitchen On Fire where I’ll be teaching the professional tips and tricks that will help take your baking to the next level! Register here today:
Question #1: How do you measure your flour? I can’t find any instructions on whether to spoon and level or to scoop and level.
For the recipes listed in the Kiss My Bundt cookbook, you always want to use the “scoop and level” technique. With this technique, you dip a clean spoon into your bag/bin of flour, and then dump that flour into a dry measuring cup. Do this repeatedly until the flour has overfilled the cup. Finally, you will use the straight-edge of the spoon handle or the back of a knife) to level the flour. Do this each time and you’ll be sure to have the amount of flour that a recipe calls for
Question #2: “I prefer to weigh my flour. Do you know how much a cup of your flour weighs?”
Weighing flour is the best way to ensure you have the exact amount of flour a recipe calls for. If you weigh something on a scale, it will be the same no matter who does it. If you measure by volume, e.g. by measuring cups, there will be some variation.
Years ago I was teaching a baking class and someone told me that every time they made my cake recipes, the cake turned out heavy and dry. They even asked me if the cookbook had the “real” recipes that they had eaten in my bakeshop. I assured them the recipes were real and that bad baking outcomes can be often be traced to way the flour was measured. To prove this point, I had them measure the flour the way they normally did it. Then I measured the flour using the scoop and level technique. Their cup of flour weighed 8.7 ounces. Mine weighed 4.31 ounces. This means that their total recipe had nearly 2x the amount of flour the recipe called for, which makes their cake heavy, dense, and dry.
In the United States, measuring by weight (e.g. by scale) isn’t as common with home bakers as measuring by cups (e.g. by volume). If you learn the conversations from volume to weight, you can convert any recipe you want from volume to weight.
- TIP: When a recipe calls for 1 cup of flour, you should use a digital kitchen scale to measure the flour by weight to get 4.25 ounces or 120 grams.
Question #3: “You mention in your book that you use three sizes of bundt pans – mini or bundt cupcake, baby bundt or bundt muffin, and the 10-12 cup big ol’ bundt. What size are the mini and the baby bundts? How many cups are they?”
- My Big Ol’ Bundt pan is the 10- to 12-cup pans. For the red velvet and chocolate cake recipes, they yield less batter than the pound cakes, so I use the 10-cup pan for those.
- The Baby Bundts are also called Bundt Muffin Pans. They are about a 1-cup Capacity. These pans yield 6 cakes.
- The Mini Bundts use a pan that has 12 cake cavities that are about a 1/3 cup capacity. Sometimes sold as a bundt muffin pan, these pans yield 12 small cakes.
Do you have a baking question? Join the conversation at Facebook.com/bundts.