Pastry Chef Tip #10 ~ Keeping your sanity in the kitchen
Thanksgiving is days away and many of you will be living in the kitchen. Let me share some of my biggest "oops" with you and see if you recognize yourself in any of them.
I am guilty as charged of doing all of the following then having to scramble to correct the resulting mishap.
- Not focusing 100% and stray thoughts cause me to lose count of how many cups, teaspoons, tablespoons, etc. I've measured out. If I don't do mise en place, I've forced myself to count out loud, or dump in distinguishable piles, or measure into a separate empty bowl.
- Don't try to increase the yield on the fly. Recipe yields 2 and you want 5; your brain will say "just multiply times 5!" Wrong, make a chart in advance and you won't have to figure out what to do with 20 beaten eggs.
- Once you use or measure an ingredient move it to a separate area in the kitchen, so you don't end up using it twice. (I put my on a ledge above my counter.)
- Be very careful multi-tasking when you are in the kitchen. It's easy to lose track of where your at in the recipe, what you used, misread measurements, etc. if you are on the phone, Facebook, or taking pictures.
- Oven bake uneven? Swap the pans between the racks halfway through the cook/baking time. Use oven thermometers on each rack to really learn your oven.
- Lopsided baked product? Make sure your oven is level in BOTH directions; left to right AND front to back.
Have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!!!