Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Baking in cups - an inexact science

There are many pros of the internet - particularly when it come to baking and finding new recipes to try.  But there are also cons to this worldwide resource - namely that a huge number of delicious recipes originate from the States or Australia, where they bake using cups! That is, they measure everything out in cups rather than weighing it.

A typical example: today I wanted to make carrot muffins to put in Sophie's lunchbox for school. I also have some dates so I search for "carrot and date muffins" and, hey presto, the perfect recipe pops up courtesy of a website Simply Great Meals. But it is an Australian recipe and half the ingredients are in cups.

For someone who has grown up measuring everything on scales, I just don't get it! Flour? Maybe. Caster sugar? Again maybe. But what happens when you need brown sugar? The sticky lumps that ooze out of the packet don't fill the cup evenly. So am I meant to press them down so that they fill the entire cup? And what happens when it comes to chopped dates? You can't flatten those down, so does the recipe allow for the randomness of chop size and air gaps? I'm confused ...

And if you have to get scales out to weigh some things (the recipe calls for 100g butter) why don't we just weigh the rest of the ingredients?

Anyone out there shed some light for me please?

PS Take a look here to see the outcome of my carrot and date muffins.

© 2012 Nicola Noble: Please observe the rules of copyright and blog etiquette. If you use my ideas, please link back to my blog. And do let me know - I'd love to take a look.

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