From bowl to oven to cooling racks: Tips help you with cookie baking

November 08, 1995|By Isabel Forgang

Follow these tips from cookiemeister Nick Malgieri, director of the baking program at Peter Kump's Cooking School and author of the just-published "How to Bake", for baking the best cookies around.

* Unless a recipe specifies otherwise, have all ingredients at room temperature.

* Don't overmix cookie dough. It can cause cookies to inflate and then collapse in the oven. When a recipe calls for mixing ingredients "until smooth," it means that you should mix everything just until it is blended together.

* Follow instructions for pan preparation when they call for greasing and flouring. It can mean the difference between cookies that release easily from the pan or those that stick and crumble.

* Good-quality cookie pans, such as those made from heavy aluminum, or insulated pans are essential. If your oven has strong bottom heat, as most electric ovens do, avoid positioning a rack in the bottom of the oven.

* Unless instructions state otherwise, do not remove cookies from the pan until they have cooled. To reuse the cookie sheet, slide paper or foil from the pan to a rack to cool the cookies.

* After cookies have cooled, store them carefully. Place delicate cookies in a container with a tight-fitting lid, between sheets of wax paper. Sturdier cookies may be piled into a container without being layered between paper.

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