Now that most of us have adjusted to the new normal of being confined in our homes and working remotely, one area that has kept creativity alive and brings cheer to otherwise monotonous days is cooking.
Some people have surprised us with their culinary skills, with delectable pictures being posted on their social media profiles. What has stood out during these quarantine times is baking, with banana bread being the latest internet trend.
According to Google Trends, internet searches like 'How to bake bread at home' and 'Banana bread' have seen over 100 percent spikes in the country, during the lockdown period.
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.
To create delicious baked goods, we spoke to experts at Flipkart to suggest baking essentials that go a long way in the kitchen:
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 for. However, the ingredients and process might alter slightly.
Blending wet and dry elements
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.
Processing for uniform texture
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 equipment, there are various 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.
The extra oomph
Icing on the cake adds to the extra oomph, makes it gooey and presentable. If you're baking a cake, decorative ingredients such as sprinkles, cherries and fruit can be added to add to the flavour and increase the beauty quotient. For savoury items such as pizzas and pastas, mozarella cheese is the way to go. You can be creative with your decorations depending on what you are baking.
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.