Lorraine Pascale's Expert Tips for Better Baking
Lorraine's best piece of advice is perhaps also the simplest: "Practice, practice, practice!"
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"Use a good recipe. Start off with a simple recipe if you are not a baker yet, and then work your way up from there," she advises. "Practice, practice, practice!"
Keep Your Pantry Current
"Check dates on things like yeast, baking powder, baking soda," says Lorraine.
Test Your Oven Before Baking
"Ovens vary a lot," Lorraine points out. "It is good to test your oven and see where the hot spots are in it." Here's her way to do just that: "Put four pieces of bread on a baking sheet and pop [them] in the oven at 400 degrees F. Pull it out after seven or so minutes and you can see if your oven bakes evenly or not, as some pieces of toast will be more cooked than others."
Follow the Recipe No Matter What
"Improvised baking rarely works," says Lorraine. "Baking is a science and should be treated as such," she adds.
Eliminate Disasters Before They Occur
"To prevent your cake from falling, just don't open the oven during the first three-quarters of the cooking time," she says.
Kitchen Scales Are Crucial
"Weigh the ingredients exactly," she says "This is really important in baking."
Remember to Relax
"Have fun! Baking should be a relaxing process," she notes.
Want More Bakers vs. Fakers?
Check out Food Network's Bakers vs. Fakers headquarters to hear more top tips from Lorraine, and find out how you rate as a home baker.