It’s easy to bake when you simply use pre-made cookie dough or a box of brownie mix. But making your sweets from scratch really isn’t all that difficult, either. At Mother Rucker’s Sweets, we bake from scratch every single day—and you can definitely taste the difference!
When you’re unfamiliar with the tricks of the trade, baking from scratch can be a little daunting. The Mother Rucker’s team has put together a list of our tried and true kitchen tips to help you get started on your sweets.
Use real butter.
In this health-conscious world, the urge to substitute butter with margarine, olive oil or shortening is understandable. But there is simply no substituting the taste of butter. Those other ingredients will make fine cookies, but they won’t be as flavorful as cookies made from real, made-from-milk butter.
Before baking, make sure your butter is at room temperature. Butter that is too soft won’t cream well with sugar and will yield oily cookies. The best way to bring your butter to room temperature isn’t to microwave it, as that leads to uneven heating, but to cut your stick into small pieces and let it sit out for about half an hour.
Sugar does more than just sweeten your cookies—it also contributes to their texture. Using only white sugar will make hard, crunchy cookies, while all brown sugar will yield soft, chewy cookies. Experiment with both until you get the consistency you want.
An eggcellent idea
Keeping fresh eggs in the fridge is a must. But when you’re getting ready to bake a batch of cookies, it’s best to use eggs that are at room temperature. If they’re too cold, the mixture will curdle and the cookies will bake unevenly.
To get your eggs to room temperature, place them in a bowl of warm tap water for a few minutes before adding them to the mix. Be sure to add them one at a time, beating the dough thoroughly before adding the next egg. This keeps the mixture even.
Too much flour in your dough can leave your cookies tough and dry. A good rule of thumb is to reduce the amount of flour in the recipe by an amount ranging from 3 Tbsp to ¼ C.
You’ve mixed your dough and now you’re ready to go! Chill a silicone or marble rolling pin for a few minutes before using it to roll out your dough. This way, you’ll use less flour and your cookies will be softer. Using a combination of powdered sugar and flour to dust your work surface will also help keep the cookies tender.
Line your non-stick baking sheets with parchment paper for evenly baked cookies. The paper also makes cleaning up a breeze!
Do you have a helpful hint for baking? We’d love to hear it.