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8th Oct, 2008

The recipe was very specific and called for the ingredients to be prepared and mixed in 3 separate bowls (one each for sugar and butter beaten together, sifted flour, and beaten eggs) before finally combining them all in a fourth. Bugger that for a game of soldiers, says I, and tipped everything into one bowl and mixed them all together. The result was fine, and I only had one bowl to wash up.

Why, oh why, do recipe writers specify so many unecessary steps?

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
ffutures
8th Oct, 2008 19:45 (UTC)
Because someone as cack-handed as me might be cooking it...
stevegreen
8th Oct, 2008 20:55 (UTC)
Because they have staff.
cdave
9th Oct, 2008 09:44 (UTC)
There is actually a reason for that. And a way around it too.

I baked a lot of sponges at Uni, and being of a vaguely experimented with the ordering.

It's all about combining ingredients, while adding air to keep the cake light, and not beating it out again.

You have to mix the butter and sugar together first until "creamy" in texture. Hypothesis. The sugar crystals are wrapped in butter, and there's lots of air trapped in. It's impossible to beat air out at this stage.

Break the eggs into this bowl, They normally float over the butter/sugar at this stage. Tilt the bowl to get them over to one side, and whisk them with a fork to get a little air in. Then combine the two. Don't over do it, as you can beat air out at this stage. At this stage I normally chuck in some cheap whisky :)

Then stick the bowl and a sieve onto the scales, zero them, and add the flour. Sift some it in from as high as reasonable, to add air, without missing the bowl. Fold it in. Sift some more. Fold it in. Repeat until out of flour. Too much folding beats air from the mixture.
marypcb
9th Oct, 2008 16:02 (UTC)
also, if the butter is hard it takes a lot of creaming; that's harder to do with everything else in the bowl
cdave
9th Oct, 2008 16:05 (UTC)
Oh, and I forgot the really nifty bit about this recipe. The weighing.

Weigh some eggs in their shells (I've used values of some from 1 small, to 5 medium in the past).

Then just use an equal weight of butter, sugar, and flour.
marypcb
9th Oct, 2008 16:06 (UTC)
if you beat muffin mix enough to beat the egg, you will overmix it and have leaden muffins. the recipes are usually trying to make the chemistry as relaible as possible.

doesn;t everyone beat eggs in a mug? ;-)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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Caroline M

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