How to avoid sticky baking situations

Unmolding Bundt cakes used to terrify me. I would break out in a nervous sweat as I tipped the baking pan upside down over a cooling rack, hoping that when I lifted the tin, a beautifully detailed whole cake would emerge. Before I locked in on my preferred method of coating the pan, I had all sorts of stuck-cake disasters. Sometimes only small pieces would break off, and I could sometimes camouflage those with a carefully placed bit of glaze. Other times entire chunks of cake would be held hostage by the pan, and I would resign myself to making cake balls with the pieces. If only I had the excellent advice from The Washington Post’s Becky Krystal 20+ years ago when I started my Bundt pan baking career and I could have avoided many of these disasters.

Krystal shares tips not only about how to coat Bundt and other fancy-shaped pans, but how to properly prepare round cake pans, loaf pans, and sheet pans for easy cake removal. These techniques include how to grease pans, when flour is necessary (and when it should be avoided), and how to effectively use parchment paper to your advantage. Krystal provides tips such as using sugar instead of flour when coating the pans for an extra dimension to your baked goods.

I have yet to find a one-size-fits-all solution for my baking needs. Using a baking spray with flour works best on my intricate Bundt pans, while plain parchment suffices for most round cake pans. I often employ parchment in square pans to more easily remove cakes, bars, or brownies without damaging the corners.

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  • Twysbeek  on  April 7, 2022

    I am addicted to Baker’s Joy spray it has yet to fail me.

  • demomcook  on  April 7, 2022

    I’m a fan of a nice coating of butter and a sprinkle of vanilla sugar all around. Love the crisp exterior it gives me, which (almost) always slides out of the pan.

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