It is day ‘whatever’ of the lockdown and by now most of us have tuned in and adjusted to the new normal of staying confined in our homes, working remotely, overexposing ourselves to digital services and so on. We have found newer ways to keep ourselves busy and entertained. While some are still struggling with the new routine, others have discovered new hobbies or are using this time to hone some rusty skills. Some people have surprised us with their culinary skills, with delectable pictures being posted on their social media profiles. However, the one skill that has clearly stood out in these quarantine times is baking!
With people celebrating birthdays, anniversaries or just fulfilling sweet cravings while indoors, baking has come in very handy. According to a recent research, there is a 10-fold increase in search for bread and cake recipes. An Economist report also highlights the huge increase in sales of flour and other baking ingredients. However, owing to the lockdown some people lack functional appliances or are running out of ingredients.
Baking is a deeply engaging activity where all members of the family can pitch in right from measuring the flour to popping the batter in the oven. This World Baking Day, celebrated annually on May 17, engage the eldest and youngest members of your family in the process and have some fun. Boast of your baking skills on Instagram and make your feed sparkle with some engaging videos or ‘yummilicious’ pictures! If you don’t have the essentials, here are some substitutes you can count on, as per experts from Flipkart.
Convection ovens, microwaves and more
While baking is easier with an OTG oven, there are other simple substitutes that can be used if you do not have an OTG handy. Microwaves and gas tandoors are perfect substitutes for a convection oven. If you own a gas tandoor, you can bake anything under the sun from pizzas to cakes. Gas tandoors are the easiest and the lowest maintenance equipment for baking. Additionally, microwaves can also be used. However, the ingredients and process might alter slightly. One can also use a pressure cooker or pan to bake a cake.
Blending wet and dry ingredients
Immersion hand blenders are key to combine the dry and wet ingredients into a smooth creamy texture. Hand blenders allow the batter to mix together in a uniform consistency without any lumps or air bubble that might hinder that perfect end result. You can also use a whisk. Food processors are a blessing, especially when you are rolling a dough. While hand blenders are suited for cakes, food processors are suited for breads, biscuits and scones or even fluffy pancakes. There are many varieties of food processors in the market depending on their auxiliary attachments and functions.
Miscellaneous baking paraphernalia
Baking is enjoyable when you absorb all the elements in it – right from choosing the correct apron fabric to choosing the right mixing bowls. The science behind choosing the right bowl is that copper and glass binds the egg and gives a creamy texture without making it grainy. Besides the electronic equipments, there are various miscellaneous tools that one might need for baking. From basic tools like measuring cups, spatulas and mixing bowls to aprons that protect you from getting drenched in flour, these items are essential for making the baking process smooth, streamlined and efficient.
For the perfect icing on the cake
With summers in full swing, it is imperative to store the baked products properly. You must store cakes and icing separately to ensure the end product doesn’t get soggy. Also, make sure the unfrosted cakes and items like pizza dough are stored in a plastic wrap or airtight containers. This adds to the shelf life and keeps the structure of ingredients intact.