Loose frosting can be fixed by adding extra powdered sugar. If your frosting is too thick to spread, slowly stir in a spoonful of milk, one at a time, until it reaches the right consistency.
Cool before frosting.
Patience is a virtue in life and baking. Never frost a cake, cupcakes, or cookies until they have fully cooled, unless you like frosting that slides off to the side.
Sometimes we’re in a hurry and need our cake to cool (or chocolate to set) so we can finish our recipe. In such a case, place the baked goods in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes, or in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to bring the temperature down. Make sure not to forget about them.
Flash freezing is the process of freezing something unwrapped, so you can later wrap and freeze it without upsetting its appearance. I do this with frosted cakes and cupcakes most often. Place them in the freezer uncovered for 30-60 minutes, until the exterior is hard, then wrap well and freeze. When you are ready to use the cake, unwrap first, then thaw for several hours on the countertop.
Bake in advance.
As a time-saver, you can make pie crusts and cookies in advance, then freeze and bake straight from the freezer. Also try flash freezing (above) to finish your baked goods days before an event. This helps lessen the stress of party planning.
Mix in order.
Sugar and butter should almost always be beaten together before adding anything else. Dry ingredients should be combined together thoroughly in one bowl before adding liquids. Liquid ingredients should always be added after the first two steps are complete. This method creates smooth even mixing.
Don’t overbeat or underbeat the batter.
Underbeating or overbeating will affect the texture and volume of the cake. Most recipes are tested using an electric mixer, which produces the highest volume. Read the recipe to be sure which method to use, electric or hand mixing. One minute of medium beating time with a mixer equals, usually equals about 150-180 strokes by hand.
When a recipe asks you to “fold” something into the batter, always start at the bottom of the bowl and sweep the spatula over the top to incorporate the new ingredient gently into the batter. Rotate the bowl to insure even folding.