“If you heap all your dry ingredients, your recipe won’t turn out right. Instead of putting a cup of flour in there you may be putting the equivalent of a cup and a half.”
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Measuring Dry Ingredients
Plop. A young boy eager to help his mother bake a cake, scooped out a heaping cup of flour and dumped it in the bowl. Next, he grabbed the measuring spoon she had told him to use and dipped out a heaping spoonful of baking powder. He stirred vigorously, creating a white storm cloud of flour. When the storm had settled, most of it on Jared, he set the bowl on the counter next to his mother with a loud bang. She couldn’t help but chuckle at her little eight year old boy, his once vibrant red hair now dulled with a light dusting of flour.
She handed him the cocoa and a half cup measuring cup, and asked him to measure out the cocoa. Once again he scooped the cup heaping full and plopped it into the bowl.
“Jared!” His mom exclaimed. “Have you been measuring all your ingredients that way?”
He nodded and a quizzical look came across his little freckled face. Why would that matter? He wondered. More was always better, right?
Patiently his mom explained, ” If you heap all your dry ingredients, your recipe won’t turn out right,” She told him. “Instead of putting a cup of flour in there you may be putting the equivalent of a cup and a half. Instead of a teaspoon of baking powder, you may be putting in a teaspoon and a quarter. It will make all your measurements completely different, and your recipe will not turn out right,” she explained.
She then pulled a butter knife out of the drawer, grabbed the measuring cup, and filled the measuring cup with flour. She held the heaping cup above her flour canister and ran the knife evenly across the top of the measuring cup, leveling the flour out, and knocking the excess back into the canister.
“This is the best and most accurate way to make sure your measurements are the same each time,” She explained.
They finished the first cake with, with all the lopsided measurements, and stuck it in the oven. While it baked Jared and his mother made another cake. Armed with the butter knife his mom gave him, he carefully made sure every measurement was dead on, and not one extra grain of flour was going to defeat him.
Once both cakes had finished baking, they cut a slice out of each and compared them. The first cake was dry and had an odd texture, but the second one was moist and decadent. After tasting both Jared knew without a doubt he was going to measure his ingredients carefully from now on.