How can you make sure your baked goods are evenly cooked?


jesslane94

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My sister and I baked a banana bread loaf last night (perhaps a bit too long), but then we noticed deep at the core there was still a soft undercooked part. The edges were quite done though. Does anyone have any good tips about evenly cooking bread and other items?
 
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Babble64

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I'm not an expert here....banana bread has been a challenge for me as well. A couple of things I know I've done wrong though are ....a dark bread pan (I recently did two loaves...one using an old metal pan that had darkened with age, and the other using a new, disposable aluminum pan. The latter came out lovely, the former was definitely over cooked on the outside)

Making sure you're giving whatever is in the oven even cooking is important too. Don't open the door and look in too often, since that releases heat and your oven has to then work to come back to your baking temperature.

Looking forward to hearing from some folks who know more about this than I do!
 

Soliloquy

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It's my understanding that many ovens don't have the correct temperature, especially those that have been in use many years. Try getting an oven thermometer and making sure your food is baking at the temperature called for in the recipe.
 

jesslane94

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Ahh thanks guys! I know the feels about the dark pans, I usually stay away from them.
 

Babble64

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Ahh thanks guys! I know the feels about the dark pans, I usually stay away from them.

Jesslane have you ever made a cake like the one you use as a Avatar? It's beautiful but seems very ambitious to me!
 

limcid

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I like the added oven thermometer suggestion. It's easy to take it for granted that the temperature will match the dial setting you set. This just might be why some of my baking efforts turn out less than expected. It seems so obvious, now. :p
 
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simplicity19

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I think one of the first things is to just get to know your oven. We have a gas stove and I know it cooks things quicker than what most recipes call for. So I would test things out and see how fast your oven cooks. If its too fast maybe you need to cover your pan, or adjust the temperature. You might even see about placing it on different levels with the racks.
 

jesslane94

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Jesslane have you ever made a cake like the one you use as a Avatar? It's beautiful but seems very ambitious to me!
Not really! It looks difficult to me too. I've only made the usual two layer red velvet cake, and that was slightly challenging. Ended up tasting good though!
 

Babble64

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Not really! It looks difficult to me too. I've only made the usual two layer red velvet cake, and that was slightly challenging. Ended up tasting good though!

It's all about perspective and time. I've never made a multi-colored cake but I have made multi-colored/layered Jello. You have to plan ahead and be willing to put the time into it. It appears as if this recipe is all a white cake base batter, with food coloring added to create the rainbow effect. You'd have to do it in steps unless you had an oven that baked very evenly throughout or more than one oven. The intense color might change the cakes flavor, though. Still, to do it even once would be cool...just to see people's reactions when it was cut!
 

ACSAPA

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Not really! It looks difficult to me too. I've only made the usual two layer red velvet cake, and that was slightly challenging. Ended up tasting good though!
I heard that the drawback of making a rainbow cake is that you end up with a lot of beautifully colored dirty bowls. I hate to do dishes so I probably wouldn't attempt it.
 

epliu

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Just make sure your oven is at the correct temperature, just place an oven thermometer inside to be sure. Also, try to follow what the recipe says in terms of the size of the pan and the oven temperature. A slight change in measurements can make a difference in cooking time and temp, so make sure you are able to adjust. I usually check midway through the cooking time and turn whatever I'm baking just to be sure.
 
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JCase

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I had the same problem with an apricot bread I tried to make. I don't think it was an oven temperature issue because I made two other breads that evening in the same oven and they turned out fine. Maybe its the density of the batter? The banana bread and orange, walnut prune bread were fine and there were about the same consistency. The apricot bread? By the time it was done in the middle the ends of the bread were as hard as a rock! Made me very sad since the ingredients were so expensive (dried apricots, almonds and coconut). I wound up cutting off the ends and passing them off as biscotti!
 

LadyLuck7

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I have found making sure my temperature is correct along with type pans that I use do have major bearing on the turnout. I tend to favor aluminum and glass pans over darker varieties. My stove is very old, so I have learned to turn it up twenty-five degrees above suggested bake temp and then double check it with a thermometer.
 

cefmac

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My oven is notoriously bad for cooking things unevenly, and burning things in a very short amount of time, so I usually cover my baking with tin foil and leave it in for a bit longer than the recipe suggests. That way it cooks all the way through and the top doesn't get burnt. I always check with a skewer as well, by poking it into the cake at various places to check the whole thing's done.
 

Babble64

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I heard that the drawback of making a rainbow cake is that you end up with a lot of beautifully colored dirty bowls. I hate to do dishes so I probably wouldn't attempt it.

It's the same with decorating a cake with multiple colors of frosting. I don't do it often, but it's fun when I do!
 

wahmed

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Not really! It looks difficult to me too. I've only made the usual two layer red velvet cake, and that was slightly challenging. Ended up tasting good though!
I've made a rainbow came before. It was for my baby girls 1st birthday. It's not difficult, it just takes ages. You have to bake in 2- 3 batches with 2- 3 sandwich pans. It depends on the size and amount of colours. It looks great though.
 
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Margot

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My sister and I baked a banana bread loaf last night (perhaps a bit too long), but then we noticed deep at the core there was still a soft undercooked part. The edges were quite done though. Does anyone have any good tips about evenly cooking bread and other items?
My sister and I baked a banana bread loaf last night (perhaps a bit too long), but then we noticed deep at the core there was still a soft undercooked part. The edges were quite done though. Does anyone have any good tips about evenly cooking bread and other items?
 
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Margot

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Ah, banana bread. Truly a staple in my house. Breakfast, dessert, snack... love it any time. I, too, had that trouble with banana bread. What I found was when baked in a 350 oven, it bakes up nice and high. And, it cracks. The crack is the key. Look carefully at that crack when checking for done. If it still looks moist, the bread is not done. If it looks dry - never mind the color - it should be done perfectly. Moist bread but not underdone. The color will be more pale in that crack than the loaf will be. Hope this helps you. Perhaps a different recipe?

Banana Bread

3 mashed bananas
1/3 cup margerine/butter/Crisco
1 cup sugar
1 egg
Beat/mix above well and add:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Mix well and put batter into a greased/floured loaf tin
350 degrees for an hour
 

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