Baking, unlike cooking, is an exact science. I love to bake! I especially love making apple pie from scratch. From peeling each and every apple to mixing the dough, getting it just right, and rolling it out.
But before we can bake, we need to stock the kitchen with a few essentials…
- Cookie sheet – One will do, but two are always nice when baking several dozen of your favorite cookies. Cookie sheets are flat and do not have rolled edges. Be sure you purchase good quality because cheap ones can warp when placed into a hot oven. When baking cookies, I recommend lining the cookie sheet with parchment paper. I use If You Care Unbleached Totally Chlorine-Free Parchment Baking Sheets, which allow the cookie to slide off and helps with clean up.
- Basic baking sheet or jelly-roll pans, as they were called when I was growing up, have rolled edges and are wonderful to use when baking jelly or pumpkin rolls or even roasting vegetables. One will be fine in the beginning. Again purchase quality.
- Loaf pan – The standard loaf pan size is 9 x 5. You can use it to bake everything from breads to meatloaf. If need be, you can initially purchase foil pans which come in a multitude of sizes and are good to use when giving loaves of banana bread as gifts.
- Pie dish – I have 9” as well as several deep-dish ones to use when baking pies, or quiches.
- Round cake pans – Two definitely, for those layered cakes and cinnamon rolls.
- Measuring utensils – You will need separate measuring tools for liquid and dry ingredients. Liquid measuring cups come in 1-cup, 2-cup, 4-cup and 8-cup sizes while dry measuring cups come in ¼, 1/3, ½, ¾ and 1-cup measurements. Measuring spoons come in 1/8, ¼, ½, 1 tsp. and 1 tbsp.
- Mixer – I have a KitchenAid, which was purchased over 20 years ago and is still going strong, but if budget is an issue, a hand mixer will do the trick.
Again, quality lasts!
This is by no means an all-inclusive list of baking essentials, but it will get you started in your kitchen. So, here’s to a life-time of happy baking!