5 of the best baking tricks from experts
Baking is a fantastic way to learn new skills in the kitchen, while also creating something incredibly delicious. Though with all things, learning how to bake takes time and effort. You may stumble at the start, but if you find yourself covered head-to-toe in flour or baking a tart with a soggy bottom, we can relate. Which is why we’ve compiled our top five cooking tips and kitchen hacks that will help you nail your next bake.
1: Use dental floss for even cakes
We know how this one sounds but trust us. When you bake two cakes in an oven at the same time and need to stack them, the one that’s underneath will often end up flat, while the one on top will end up a bit rounded. Once the cakes have been baked and are cooled down, you can use unflavoured dental floss to cleanly cut the top of the rounded cake so it’s levelled out and the same height as the flat one. This makes staking and icing much easier, as both cakes are the same height and are flat as a pancake.
But if you have one of NEFF’s ovens with the CircoTherm® functionality, you can save the floss for when you brush your teeth. Why? Well, the CircoTherm® allows for an even cook across multiple dishes – including multiple pans of Victoria sponge cake. But on the off chance one cake looks slightly taller than the rest, pull out your trusty dental floss and even it up.
2: Know your oven
Knowing your oven like the back of your hand is essential to a perfect bake. No two ovens are the same – some ovens run a little too hot, while others can operate a bit on the cooler side. Investing in a thermometer can go a long way with your baking, as you can easily check the temperature while you cook and adjust as required.
NEFF’s range of ovens all clearly show the temperature on the oven’s display, along with the setting in use. The temperature of these ovens is also easy to adjust, as you only need to press a single button to change the temperature to your desired heat. So whether you’re baking orange shortbread or a loaf of brioche, temperature is key for a consistent, even bake.
3: Invest in a good steam oven
If you find that your bakes are dry or cracked on top, it boils down to a lack of moisture. Budding bakers can remedy this by investing in a steam oven to bake anything their heart desires – from banana bread to passionfruit puddings and beyond. NEFF’s range of steam ovens include the VarioSteam function, which gives bakers the opportunity to use added steam in your baking. The three levels of steam adds the perfect amount of moisture for a soft interior, but not soggy, bake with a crispy exterior. If you want to forgo the water bath, then investing in a FullSteam oven is a great tool for any baker who wants exceptional results every time while retaining maximum flavour.
4: Avoid a soggy bottom with a metal pie pan
When baking pies that have a soft and juicy filling, like a nectarine frangipane or banoffee tart, there’s always a risk of having a soggy bottom. But one easy kitchen hack is to place the pie pan on a pre-heated surface, like a pizza stone. By using these pre-heated bases, you can bake your base quicker so that the liquids of your pie don’t soak the bottom.
You can, of course, invest in a NEFF oven that has the CircoTherm® Intensive feature. This feature uses a combination of the patented CircoTherm® fan technology and bottom heat, which helps crisp up the base of certain foods, such as a berry galette all without the infamous soggy bottom.
5: Multitask like a pro
Whether you’re baking an elaborate cake or a loaf of bread, more often than not you’re juggling multiple things at once. And having a kitchen that’s caters to your baking needs can truly make a difference. NEFF’s unique Slide&Hide® oven allows you to balance whipping up cream or mixing icing with checking your bakes with ease. The door seamlessly glides under the oven, so you don’t have to awkwardly reach into the oven.
If you can’t open the Slide&Hide® door because your hands are full, then take advantage of the NEFFLight® function in your oven. This feature illuminates every corner of your oven at all angles, so you can examine your bake without having to open the door – perfect for when you’re making sauce on the stovetop and you need a quick peek into your oven.
Planning to upgrade your kitchen appliances or replace an old oven? Book a free demonstration with a NEFF Cooking expert to learn more about the right appliance for you.
NEFF is a German-engineered kitchen appliance brand, with a product range that includes ovens, cooktops, rangehoods, coffee machines and dishwashers designed to make life in the kitchen a daily pleasure. For people who love to cook, NEFF gives you the tools to creative meaningful connections, express your creativity and make memories. Because real life happens in the kitchen.
Learn more about NEFF here.