Cooking Measurements And Tips

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Proper measuring of ingredients is important to successful cooking and baking. Some foods can be greatly affected by too much or too little of certain ingredients, such as salt, baking soda, baking powder and hot or spicy ingredients, such as cayenne pepper. The following information will assist in ensuring that your ingredients are measured properly.

Measuring Spoons:

Generally consists of at least 4 spoons, which are made of plastic or metal. Measuring spoons are used to measure small quantities of both dry and liquid ingredients. It is helpful to have two sets so that one can be used for dry ingredients and one can be used for liquid ingredients. This eliminates having to wash and dry the spoons after using for liquid ingredients and before using with the next dry ingredient.

Dry Measuring Cups:

Plastic or metal individual cups of various sizes used for single measures. There are also adjustable measuring cups available. The cup has a slide bar that can be adjusted so the cup can measure different amounts. Graduated and adjustable measuring cups are used to measure dry ingredients, such as flour, sugar, oats, rice and solid ingredients, such as shortening and peanut butter.

Liquid Measuring Cups:

Glass or clear plastic containers with a pour spout and handle. They are generally available in 1 cup, 2 cups, 4 cups and 8 cup sizes, which have graduated measures on the side.

Scales:

Balance or spring scales are used to measure the weight of ingredients. Balance scales will be more accurate than spring scales.

Portioning Scoops:

Scoops, available in mechanical and non-mechanical types, that are used for measuring, portioning, and forming. The measuring scoops are a popular utensil used by professional chefs. They are available in several sizes, which are numbered according to their volume. The higher the number, the smaller the volume.

The scoops are handy for measuring even portions when making foods such as cookies, muffins, and meatballs. A #16 may be used for a medium size cookie whereas a #30 or #24 would be used for a small cookie. A #16 may be used for making meatballs and a #6 for portioning meat for a patty. Using a scoop for measuring is not necessary, but if you have a size that works for a food that you make frequently, it can be a handy time saver.

Mixing Bowls:

Plastic, glass, or metal containers of varying shapes into which ingredients can be placed, measured, and mixed.

Weight versus volume:

If the recipe provides a volume and weight measurement, use a kitchen scale and measure the ingredient by weight for the most accurate quantity. There can be a variance in how much of a dry ingredient, such as flour, is actually in a measuring device. This is affected by the manner in which it is added to the measuring cup and by how much the ingredient is compacted. Humidity is also a factor in the weight of the dry ingredient. Using a scale to weigh the ingredient will eliminate the variance and provide a more accurate measurement. Because flour is generally a major ingredient in many recipes and different types of flour weigh do not weigh the same, it is important to be as accurate as possible with its measurement.

Popular Conversions:

Cups (US) to Tablespoons (US)

1 cup (US) is equal to 16 tablespoons (US)

Tablespoons (US) to Cups (US)

1 tablespoon (US) is equal to 0.06250 cups (US)

Tablespoons (US) to Milliliters

1 tablespoon (US) is equal to 14.7868 milliliters

Milliliters to Tablespoons (US)

1 milliliter is equal to 0.06763 tablespoons (US)

Drops to Milliliters

1 drop is equal to 0.05134 milliliters

Milliliters to Drops

1 milliliter is equal to 19.4769 drops

Teaspoons (US) to Milliliters

1 teaspoon (US) is equal to 4.928921598877499 milliliters

Milliliters to Teaspoons (US)

1 milliliter is equal to 0.2029 teaspoons (US)

Cups (US) to Grams

1 cup (US) is equal to 236.5882 grams

Cooking Measurement Conversion Calculator to convert Cups, Tablespoons, Teaspoons, and other units – Good Calculators

Measuring Tips

When measuring ingredients, never measure over the mixing bowl containing the other ingredients. You may accidentally tip the measuring device or over pour the ingredients and excess ingredients would fall into the mixture. This could ruin the whole batch, depending on the ingredient and how much was spilled. Measure over the sink, another bowl, or a sheet of wax paper to catch any excess spillage. Spillage caught on wax paper can be returned to that ingredient’s container.

If you do not have two sets of measuring cups or spoons that can be used separately for the dry and liquid ingredients, measure the dry ingredients first and then use the measuring cups and spoons for the liquid ingredients.

Store loose dry ingredients, such as salt, in a lidded container. The ingredient can then be spooned out and leveled, rather than trying to pour it into a measuring spoon and having it spill over the edges.

To help you keep track of which ingredients you have measured and added in the mixing bowl, place all the ingredients on one side of the mixing bowl and once you have measured and add an ingredient, move its container to the opposite side of the bowl.

When cooking, learn to estimate the small measurements of ingredient to save time. Pour the measured amount of an ingredient into the palm of your hand. Observe the look and feel of the quantity and then try to pour that same amount into your palm without measuring first. Measure the amount you poured out to see how close you are to the actual measure. Practice doing this and soon you will be able to measure the ingredients by look and feel. This will greatly reduce your prep time when cooking. Do not use this technique when measuring ingredients for baking. When baking, it is more critical to that all ingredients are measured accurately.

Do not mistake fluid ounces for ounces. Ounces measure weight and fluid ounces measures volume.

Roger Keyserling


Cooking Measurements And Tips was originally published in eCom Tips on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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