Basic Equipment for Baking
Here is a question people always ask when they start out baking for the first time…”what do I need to bake a cake?”. To bake a simple cake you only need a few things to achieve this. You do not need a fancy food mixer or crazy shaped cake tins.
I have created two blogs posts, the first being the most basic things you need. The second will be on advanced and “nice to have” tools for your kitchen. The second blog post will be published in a couple of weeks, so look out for that.
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One of the essentials parts to cooking anything is accurate measurements of ingredients. If you are over or under on just 1 thing, you could end up with a slimy goo rather than the glorious golden brown sponge you wanted.
I started out with a very simple set of scales. They were not digital, but they did come with an adjustable cog to reset the scales and a good sized bowl. They served me well for many years. These days I have a set of digital scales built into my Kenwood food processor, but you don’t have to spend this much right now.
I generally find that a few mixing bowls of different sizes can be handy, also they stack within each other for better storage. Generally, I opt for plastic mixing bowls, mainly due to their cost, strength and ease of cleaning. However, you can get glass, plastic, metal and wooden bowls too.
Measuring Jugs and Cups
As I mentioned when speaking about scales, it is important to be accurate with your measurements. Another method of measuring your ingredients is jugs and cups. For dry ingredients cups are brilliant and do not take up much space at all. For liquids, I always turn to my trusty pyrex measuring jug.
If you are not familiar with measuring cups, you will mainly see them in a lot of recipes from America. We have a number of recipes on the site that show measurements in cups. However, if you don’t have any cups, we do have a handy conversion guide available HERE. The guide is an A4 printable poster that you can stick on your kitchen wall for easy access. Please also share this with all your friends to help them out too.
The wooden spoon is most certainly the work horse of the baking kitchen. They are cheap, dishwasher safe and last for a long time. It is worth having several wooden spoons that are good and sturdy. Some of the mixtures you will come across will be thick and stiff, the last thing you want is one breaking in the mixture.
If you are going to making a pastry based pie or decorating a cake with icing, a rolling pin is definitely needed in every kitchen. Personally, I like the roughness and feel of a wooden rolling pin, but you can get silicone based ones which give a much smoother finish.
Baking Trays & Tins
When it comes to baking trays, there are just so many you can choose from. I generally stick with just three standard trays – The 12 hole cupcake tray, a loaf tin and 2 round cake tins.
These allow me to cook anything from cupcakes, bread and sponge cake for birthdays.
Cooling racks are great for when you taking your freshly cooked items out of the oven and need somewhere for them to cool off. The last thing you want is to place a sponge cake on a solid surface while warm. You will end up with a soggy bottom!!
Was recently shopping in Ikea and came across this awesome foldaway cooling rack. It didn’t cost very much either, I would advise anyone to go get one if you are in Ikea. Until you go there, see some of my suggestions from Amazon below.
That sums up everything you will need to get you started with basic baking. While we have provided you with useful links to Amazon, you can also find good bargains out there at your local supermarkets for kitchen kits.
We will be doing another post in a near future on more advanced utensils you can have in your kitchen to help you with baking.