Have you ever tried baking or cooking without properly measuring the amount of the ingredients you use? For sure the end product might taste a little off than how you have intended it to.
Measuring is important for baking and cooking. Although it can be a little forgiving when it comes to the latter, it takes a while to get used to how much ingredients are exactly needed. Finding the right balance to get the taste you want usually needs a few dashes of salt or herbs here and there, so for starters, it would be best to just use measuring tools. Baking, on the other hand, can be considered as a science in itself because it needs precise measurements for the ingredients to get that perfect product.
Proper measuring tools should be used for a particular ingredient. Tools for measuring wet ingredients should only be used for wet ingredients, like measuring cups and jugs. While dry ingredients should be measured with dry measuring implements like plastic measuring scoops. All these measuring tools can be bought wholesale if needed.
Scoops and cups used for measuring dry ingredients are designed to gather ingredients like flour, sugar, oatmeal, and cocoa. They are created with even edges so that it can be leveled off with a straight edge like the back of a knife or an offset spatula. Common measuring implements for dry ingredients are the nested cups and spoons which comes in different sizes.
It is also important to know that there are ingredients that get compacted easily like flour, cocoa, and powdered sugar. To measure them correctly, you would need to spoon the dry ingredients to the measuring cup little by little until it gets full to the brim, then level it off with the back of the knife or spatula. But, if the recipe calls for a heaping cup, leveling it off is not necessary.
Ingredients like brown sugar, shredded cheese, coconut, or herbs are classified as light or firmly packed ingredients. They are bulkier and tends to have big air pockets when being spooned to the cup. Lightly pressing down or packing them will eliminate the air pockets, giving you a more accurate measurement. But never pack them too tightly that it gets crushed and might get stuck to the cup measure.
Measuring fat like butter or margarine can be convenient nowadays since they come in conveniently packed measured sticks. Check the underside or side of the packaging and you will see the hatch marks. Hatch marks are the markings in a ruler that measures distances or, in this case, weight. A stick of butter is equivalent to eight tablespoons or ½ cup and two sticks is one cup.
Liquids are tricky to measure, but all you need is a glass or a clear plastic measuring cup or pitcher. Rest the measuring cup on a level surface and read the measurement at eye level while still rested on the surface. Sticky ingredients like molasses, corn syrup, and honey can be measured with a push-cup measure, which is designed to easily release these liquids. One neat trick is if a recipe calls for these types of liquids with oils, lightly oil the cups first then measure the molasses or corn syrup. This will easily release or pour better.
Baking and cooking are necessary skills in life that can be fun and exciting. One should not fret about correctly measuring the ingredients if they have the essential tools to do so.