It happens to the best of us, and most certainly happens when there's a tribe of little ones running around while you're trying to cook. But not to worry, here's a simple way to fix this common cooking error!
Whilst everything is still hot, leave the meat in the pan and add enough stock (along with a touch of water) so a thin layer of liquid rests at the bottom of the pan. Turn the heat off, cover and let it sit for a few minutes. The meat should absorb the liquid and leave it more tender and juicy than what it initially was.
Worst case scenario, making a quick salsa sauce to add to the meat is always a good second option.
Yia Yia Mary xx
FIXING MISTAKES – THE CAKE TIN FAIL
You’ve been there before. We all have.
You’ve toiled over recipe upon recipe, scoured the shops for your ingredients, set aside a nice afternoon for some baking downtime and if you have little helpers, they are decked out in their baking finery, wooden spoons in hand.
You measure everything to a tee, create a cake batter fit for a queen and 45 minutes later, out comes a cake worthy of an instagram post. Until the time comes to flip it… and there’s nothing. Silence. Except for the cursing that is running through your head – sometimes out loud (with the absence of said little helpers).
Your wire cooling rack is left looking at you in its lonesome, non-cake state. We’ve created some handy hints to make sure your stubborn cake days are over…
HOW TO AVOID THE STUBBORN CAKE
The key is in the prep
Always always always prepare your cake tin correctly! Before the fun begins of making your batter, get your cake tin ready. Grease your tin with melted butter.
- Grab your baking/parchment paper.
- Using a pencil, draw around the base of your tin. Cut out the circle and set aside.
- Wrap baking paper around the tin with a slight overlap and cut to the height of the tin + an extra 5cm.
- Fold a crease in the paper lengthways 2cm in and cut diagonally to the fold every 2cm.
- Place the long piece of paper into the tin with the 2cm cuts lining the base.
- Place the circular piece on top and you have a perfectly lined cake tin, ready for batter!
As tempting as it may be to create a cake of gargantuan proportions, don’t fill your pan any more than ½ - 2/3 full otherwise the result will be a big battery mess in your oven.
Don’t rush the cooling
We personally have a habit of deciding to bake right before school pick-up = disaster! Make sure you set aside adequate time where you factor in not only the cooking time, but cooling time. Your cake needs to have sufficient time to cool before removing from the tin. If you try to flip a warm cake it will crack and split and all that effort will be in crumbs. Wait for the cake to cool before placing your wire rack on top of your tin and flip over.
If there’s no magic…
If you have a case of the stubborn cake, try placing the tin in hot water to help release the cake from the pan.
If still no love, all is not yet lost.
Before you cry in your mess of crumbs, you can try some emergency cake surgery. Cut the cake in half or thirds and ease out of the pan. Icing is a tremendous way to glue cake back together, and once completely iced, no one is any more the wiser! Except for those lucky few who get an extra icing layer to enjoy.
Follow these tips to the perfectly baked cake and rest assured you can have your cake and eat it too.