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Perfect Quick Bread

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I am always getting ahead of myself, and I am very stubborn. My wife will attest to that. When I make a recipe for the first time it usually comes out good, but then I get cocky and think I can make it twice as fast and twice as good the next time. Big overestimation of my abilities!

So, I have been making pumpkin bread for a local cafe since the beginning of pumpkin season (is it over yet? I still have half a can) and I have to say that the perfect loaf kept eluding me until today (check out this recipe from Fine Cooking). I was always in a hurry to make it so I would use cold ingredients, not get the temp right or over mix the batter. I kept thinking that I was getting just one step wrong, but it turns out it was many. Let me explain.

A recent post by the food geek – One egg at a time – motivated me to check my mixing technique. This opened up a flood gate for me because I realized that not only was the mixing technique throwing the recipe off, but my ingredient temps were wrong and I was overfilling the pans! Below is a checklist I am following from now on:

1) ingredients at room temp

2) mix butter on low, then add sugar and cream on med-low

3) add eggs one at a time (adding half of the eggs at a time seems to work for larger batches, just make sure eggs, butter and sugar are thoroughly mixed)

4) scrape sides often

5) alternate when adding dry and wet ingredients to the butter/sugar/egg mixture

6) DON’T fill pans more than 2/3 full!

Follow these steps every time and don’t be like me…



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  • User avater
    LisaWaddle | 02/18/2010

    I do find that "thinking I know better" is the road to ruin, especially in baking. In most cases, the recipe writer wrote what they did for a reason. It can be hard to put your ego in check and just follow directions, though (especially in the name of speed!).

  • User avater
    BasementBaker | 02/18/2010

    My first thought is baking time. Make sure you aren't baking the cake too long. The food geek has a few posts about baking you should check out. Just scroll through his blog for the posts. http://www.finecooking.com/blog/food-geek


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