If you’re a novice baker or simply a master chef who is looking to declutter the kitchen area, a list of baking must-haves can be very helpful in preparing the ultimate baking set up. With dozens of products and ads that inundate us on a daily basis, figuring out what you really need for your kitchen can often be a perplexing task. In today’s article, we have a look at 8 absolute essentials that any baker needs in their home kitchen, so read on to find out more!
1. A High-Quality Stand Mixer
If there is only one thing that you’re willing to splash out on for your baking setup, it has got to be a high-quality stand mixer. Stand mixers such as the KitchenAid mixer do more than just whip meringues and beat fluffy frostings — by using various attachments that come with your mixer, you will be able to grind meat, roll out sheets of pasta dough, make ice cream and even shred or spiralise vegetables for the perfect lunchbox salad. If baking is your sole purpose of having a stand mixer, you will be able to prepare macaron batter, cake batter, fluffy frostings, meringues and pastry doughs with the greatest ease.
2. Measuring Cups and Spoons
Measuring cups and spoons are absolute baking essentials. Baking is a science and is all about precision — even the slightest change in ingredient quantities can result in an overly tough, dense or even sunken cake. The best way to avoid a costly baking disaster is to invest in an inexpensive set of measuring cups and spoons. Do take note that you will need one set of measuring cups for dry ingredients such as flour, and a separate wet measuring cup for liquids such as milk, oil, honey and eggs. You’ll be amazed at the difference a cheap set of measuring tools will make in the overall quality and taste of your bakes!
3. Silicone Spatulas
Silicone spatulas are another baking must have as they assist in getting every bit of batter or dough out of your mixing bowl and into your cake tin. Silicone spatulas are also super handy for folding wet and dry ingredients together when you’re making muffins, cookies and cakes. Because silicone is heat resistant, your spatula can also be used when making custards, pastry creams and curds on the stovetop. This is one tool that is inexpensive but offers a multitude of different uses around the kitchen.
4. A Blender or Food Processor
If you’re someone who is looking to make homemade nut butters, pastries, or even your own delicious Pistachio Paste for ice cream, you’re going to need a blender that is ready to tackle any challenge. Food processors and or blenders are great tools for any baker to have in the kitchen as it enables you to make fruit coulis, purees, homemade ground nuts and flours. Food processors are also very helpful for tasks such as cutting butter into flour for pastry and create minimal mess which is always a plus!
5. Quality Baking Tins
Did you know that the quality and make of your baking tins can have a great effect on how your final baked goods turn out? This is why investing in a good set of cake tins, cookie sheets, muffin tins and loaf tins is always recommended. If you’re looking for the best of the best, you’ll want to stick to Aluminum tins that distribute heat quickly and evenly. When paired with steel, you end up with baking pans that are resistant to warping, denting and will last you an entire lifetime.
The humble kitchen sieve is something that we believe deserves a lot more credit than it is given. In fact, sieves are a staple in any baker’s kitchen as they help remove lumps of flour, sugar, cocoa and other dry ingredients that go into cake batters, cookie doughs and macaron mixtures. A sieve is the best way to aerate your dry ingredients, thus resulting in a fluffy and tender baked good. Sieves are also great for liquid ingredients and the perfect tool for removing lumps from custards, curds and fruit purees.
7. A Wire Rack
Absolutely no one likes a soggy cookie, which is why a wire rack is such an important part of any baker’s kitchen. This handy tool allows air to circulate freely whilst your baked goods are cooling down and will prevent moisture from condensing on the surface of your baked delights. Wire racks are also great for tasks such as glazing cakes with mirror icings as it allows excess icing to drop off the cake easily, resulting in just the perfect amount of glaze in each and every bite of your delicious homemade delights!
8. The Oven Thermometer
If you’re really serious about baking, you’ll take a page out of professional pastry chefs’ books and purchase yourself an oven thermometer. This small and often overlooked tool is what will set your baked goods apart from the others. An oven thermometer is the best way to understand how your oven works as it will give you a clear and accurate reading of its internal temperature. Most ovens aren’t perfectly calibrated which can sometimes result in cakes that sink, burn or overcook. With an oven thermometer, you eliminate these possibilities as you are in control of the exact internal temperature of your oven!
The perfect baking setup is one that is functional, delivers the best results and helps you bake in the most efficient and effective way possible. It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive either — all you need are a few crucial tools that will make all the difference in your home baking. We hope that this article has given you some insight into some of the most essential baking tools that you’ll need for the perfect baking setup.