8 Cookies Baking Secrets

Blossom Lady
Sep 10, 2021 02:58 AM
8 Cookies Baking Secrets

Tired of your cookies not turning out right? No one expects to make perfect cookies as a beginning baker. But if you've got the basics down, don't have any bad baking habits, and are ready to take your cookie game from good to great, use these eight tips that will help you get there. Master a few techniques and learn some quick tips to turn out perfectly crispy, chewy, sweet cookies every time you bake.

1. A toast—to cookies!

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Even in the middle of a hot summer, sometimes you want a freshly baked cookie. Skip the big, hot oven and the mess of baking sheets and parchment paper by scaling things down in your toaster oven with paper muffin-tin liners and cookie dough from the freezer.
1. Flatten three or four paper muffin-tin liners on a toaster-oven baking sheet.
2. Place a frozen ball of dough on each liner and bake the cookies as usual.

2. Making sugar stick

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Here’s a trick for keeping the colored sugar from falling off your decorated holiday cookies: using a spray bottle (a plant mister works well), spritz the cookies with a light coating of water. Then sprinkle on the colored sugar.

3. Cookie decorating from the recycling bin

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
After washing and drying them well, you can use yogurt containers with plastic snap-on lids to store cookie-decorating supplies such as colored sugars and sprinkles. Take their use one step further by turning them into shakers.
1. Punch holes in the lids with a paper hole-punch. Fill the clean containers with decorations.
2. Replace the lids and invert the containers to sprinkle decorations onto frosted cookies.

4. Frosted cookie high-rise

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
A tin of colorful frosted cookies makes a nice gift around the holidays. But before the cookies can be wrapped, the frosting has to dry thoroughly, and it can be a real challenge to find enough space to spread out a few dozen cookies in a cramped kitchen. Create extra space by pressing some paper plates and cups into service.
1. Coat the rim of a small paper cup with frosting and invert it onto the middle of a paper plate. Arrange as many drying cookies around the cup as will fit comfortably on the plate. Dab the exposed rim with frosting, then make another plate in the same manner and stack it on top of the first.
2. Repeat until you have a stack of four or five cookie-laden plates.

5. Quick-drying biscotti

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Traditionally, biscotti dough is baked in a log and then cut into slices to be baked a second time, and flipped halfway through the baking time to dry both sides of each slice. Streamline this process by laying the slices on a wire cooling rack set in a baking sheet, then placing them in the oven. The rack elevates the slices, allowing air to circulate all around, drying both sides at once.

6. Car crush

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Crushing vanilla wafers or other cookies for a recipe can get laborious if done by hand. Here’s an easier way: take the whole, unopened box of cookies and use a skewer to poke a couple of small holes through the sealed box (and the plastic bag on the inside) to release the pressure. Then drive your car right over the box and presto—instant crumbs.

7. Super slicing secrets

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Neatly cutting brownies or bar cookies can be tricky. Crumbs stick to the knife, the treats end up with jagged edges, and knives aren’t shaped to make clean, straight cuts. Here are a few tricks for solving these problems.
A. Choosing plastic
Instead of using a serrated or chef’s knife to cut brownies, try a sturdy plastic knife. It glides easily through even the stickiest bars, picking up no crumbs.
B. Scoring first
Although it might try your patience, you shouldn’t cut into your brownies until they’ve had time to cool. To make them easier to cut, try using a sharp knife to score the bars as soon as the pan comes out of the oven. This will make it easier to cut clean, even pieces along the scored lines when the bars have cooled.
C. Going to the bench (scraper)
Bench scrapers are used primarily by bakers to divide masses of unbaked dough or to scrape flour and dried dough off their work surfaces. However, this tool, which is wider than most spatulas, is also very useful for cutting and neatly serving bar cookies.
1. Spray both sides of a bench scraper with vegetable oil spray.
2. Push the blade into the brownies, spacing the cuts evenly. When all the pieces are cut, slide the wide blade under the pieces to lift them up and out.

8. Simple chocolate-coated sweets

8 Cookies Baking Secrets
Try this easy way to give bar cookies a chocolate topping without having to use a double boiler or the microwave to melt the chocolate.
1. When the cookies come out of the oven, lay chocolate bars directly on top of the pan contents.
2. Once the chocolate bars have melted, use a butter knife or an offset spatula to spread the chocolate.
3. Continue spreading until the chocolate makes a thin, even layer over the entire top of the cookies.
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