Baking Cooking Method
One of the oldest cooking methods, baking uses a prolonged, dry heat in an enclosed space. An enclosed space is necessary when using the baking cooking method because it helps to distribute the heat uniformly, resulting in your foods baking evenly. Although it’s typically done in an oven, baking can be completed in hot ashes as well as on hot stones. Baking and roasting are often used interchangeably, however, they’re actually a bit different. Baking is usually completed in a deeper pan with temperatures at 375° F, or lower.
It’s considered baking when the heat that’s applied gives the food structure that it didn’t have before it went into the oven. For example, when a cake goes into the oven, it has a thick liquid consistency, but it comes out as an airy solid. Furthermore, breads go in as a soft dough, casseroles go in loose and are able to be spilled, but both come out as a more amalgamated form.
The baking cooking method usually tends to be a more involved process when preparing your food. You first have to mix the cake batter, or assemble the casseroles before they can be baked. One of the more commonly baked items is bread, which has to be mixed and kneaded first.
Many believe this to be the oldest cooking form, but my belief is that roasting over an open fire probably came first. During the baking process, the heat is gradually transferred from the surface of the cakes, cookies, and breads into their centers. This method is used for sweet dishes, such as breads, muffins, cookies, cakes, rolls, pastries, and pies. It’s also wonderful for savory dishes, like chicken, pork, fish, and beef.
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