How to bake a cake without any problems. Alexander Seleznev’s Secrets
Continuing to learn how to bake Easter Kulich from pastry guru Alexander Seleznev. Plus his signature recipe for kulich!
How to properly thaw the dough for the kulich? So, you have kneaded the dough, covered it with a towel and put it in a warm place. (Keep in mind that during the first batch, the dough can increase in volume tenfold, or even more).) To make the dough get stronger, you need to make two firings. My grandmother used to bake it by hitting it with her fist, but you can also use the palm of your hand. When the dough has risen for the first time and about an hour later when the dough has risen for the second time. Now you can add raisins, nuts, dried fruits and candied fruits. Add and mix. Leave the dough to rise again for the third time, and only then place it on the table.
And now. Grease the table with vegetable oil or melted butter. Flour is undesirable: the dough will dry out and take extra flour. We do not need it: it will be hard to rise afterwards. Also grease your hands with butter and begin to form small pieces of dough, preferably 300-400 grams each, which you can place in special forms for cakes. They are coated with silicone, which means the dough won’t stick. The form should be filled to a quarter or a third.
And you can put it in the oven? No. Cover the forms with gauze or a towel and again put them in a warm place for about an hour to prove. You can even put them in a cupboard. And be sure to place a cup of water nearby. for moisture so the dough doesn’t dry out. When the dough has risen almost to the top of the mold again, we can send the cake to the oven.
If the mold is not silicone, but metal, it is necessary to line its bottom and walls with parchment, otherwise the cake will stick. It won’t help even if you oil the mold and dust it with breadcrumbs, because the kulich dough is very delicate.
How long to bake a kulich? A big one takes 40-50 minutes, or even an hour at 180C. If the cakes are small, they bake in 20-30 minutes at 220C. Keep in mind that the bigger the loaf, the lower the temperature should be and the longer the baking time. Therefore, it is not a good idea to put a large and a small one together.
If the dough fails in the middle, what’s the problem? The dough is simply not baked. The cake is not finished. Or the oven was opened often; the heat came out and the temperature dropped, so the cake might also fail.
If the surface of the gobble is uneven or rises on one side? It means the dough was not kneaded well and there was more yeast in one place than in another. It could also be because the oven isn’t working properly. When the heat is stronger on one side and less on the other.
How long before you can look in the oven?? After about 30-40 minutes, but it is still not advisable to do this. Only open it if you see, for example, that the crust is starting to burn. Then put foil or parchment on it to reduce the heat from above.
How to take a kulich out of its mould? Do not take it out of the mold right away. The sides of a freshly baked loaf are not quite tight, and may settle. So leave it in the mold until it has cooled completely, and only then take it out.
Once the cake has cooled down, brush its surface with melted butter. This will increase the shelf life of the kulich. If you want to store them for a long time, you need to cover them with a towel and leave them in a warm place. Due to the large amount of sugar, eggs and fat, the kulich can be stored for a week.
Alexander, can you recommend a recipe for a tested one? I always make a creamy kulich for Easter. It turns out airy, almost weightless. I discovered this recipe about five years ago and have been using it every year since.
How to bake Easter kulich in an electric oven: important secrets without which nothing will work
How to bake Easter cake in an electric oven is a question that many housewives are interested in the eve of Easter. Sometimes one recipe for kulich is not enough to get a delicious Easter pastry. Therefore, we share with readers all the secrets of baking homemade Easter cake in an electric oven. Knowing them, you will be able to organize a beautiful Easter table with ruddy goblets.
The recipe for the traditional kulich for Easter 2018 is on our website it is worth saving. However, in order for Easter baking to turn out perfect, it does not hurt to also learn about the peculiarities of cooking kulich in an electric oven. Read on to learn how to bake Easter cakes correctly, how much time should be spent on it and what not to forget about it.
Whatever the recipe for making the kulich, you should stick to the same rules for handling the dough. When kneading the pasta dough, you need to make sure that it does not turn out too liquid at the finishing stage. In terms of density, it can be cut with a knife, but the dough should not be too sticky to the blade. If this is a problem, you need to add more flour to the dough.
Remember that the golden rule for making Easter eggs is that the dough needs to rise three times. In the first stage, the batter will rise, in the second stage the dough with additional ingredients added (raisins, etc.) will rise.д.). And on the third stage, the dough rises already in the baking mold before it is put into the oven.
In order to properly bake the Easter cake in the electric oven, you need to take care of the dough. It is very finicky, so under no circumstances should you leave the sourdough in a draft. The dough for the loaf should be kept in a warm place, covered with a towel.
We often fixate on how to properly bake Easter in an electric oven, but we forget about an important detail before this process. The dough for the kulich in the baking form should be greased with an egg, whipped with one tablespoon of boiled water. This is done to ensure that the Easter cake turns ruddy.
A very important point in order to properly bake a eastercake in an electric oven, you need to put a container of water in the bottom of the oven.
It is worth remembering at what temperature to bake the Easter cake in an electric oven. Of course, it all depends on the capacity and power of your appliances, but most of the time you heat an electric oven to 200 degrees.
The Easter cake weighing less than 1 kg bake for 30 minutes, about 1 kg for 45 minutes, 1.5 kg for 1 hour, 2 kg for 2 kg. 1.5 hours.
On what level of the oven to bake cakes
Kulich. the main decoration of the Easter table. According to tradition, it is the Easter loaf, which must necessarily be consecrated. Old Russian cuisine knew about twenty kinds of kulichki. For sale, they used to be baked by specially trained masters. kulichniki. Kulichiki were baked in different forms. small (kulichiki) and large (kulichiki), including bucket ones, putting them in a Russian oven.
Kuliches are successful only if the hostess puts her heart and soul into their preparation. The dough must be nurtured, protected from draughts and wrapped. As a rule, the dough is made on Thursday night, baked all day on Friday, and blessed on Saturday night.
They eat them all through Easter week, right up to Radunitsa. When a housewife makes a kulich, she must wear a clean shirt. Doliches are traditionally made round and high, with a cross on top.
In Rus, lots of dough was usually put into the kulichiki, as a larger volume of dough was better for fermentation. A lot of eggs, butter, and sugar were put in the kulichiki. All these components make for a very rich dough, and the finished cakes last a long time without getting stale.
The Ukrainians and Belarusians also baked a tall round loaf and placed a cross or some kind of decoration on top, but they did not call the loaf a kulich, but a paskha. It was thought, if the Easter cake was a success, then the whole year will be good in the family, but if it did not come out in the oven, the crust cracked or something else, then one should reap bad luck.
The cakes, both large and small, can be of varying degrees of muffininess, but all must be high.
To make a good loaf, you need good yeast, good dry flour, and a hot oven.
It is desirable to take fresh yeast for the kulich. If one has to use pre-frozen yeast, the quantity must be increased compared to that given in the recipe. It is not recommended to use dry or old yeast.
All ingredients: butter, milk, eggs, sour cream, etc. д must be fresh and of high quality.
The dough is very dense, it is kneaded very carefully, not all at once, but with a gradual addition of new products, and after each addition the dough is allowed to rise again.
You should not blindly adhere to the portions of flour in recipes, since flour comes in different varieties and different dryness. However, there are a number of rules, which must be followed.
- The room where the dough is kneaded should be warm (at least 25 degrees) and draught-free.
- The dough must not be too thin, because then the cakes will fall apart and look flat. If the dough is too thick, this is not good either: The cakes will be too heavy and tasteless, and will soon become stale. The dough should be so thick that it can be cut with a knife without adding flour. The dough must not drag when pulled with a knife.
- Knead and knead the dough as long as possible, so that it comes right off the hands and off the dishes or table top.
- Flour should be only the highest grade, dry and sifted.
- Yeast dough for kulichniks is allowed to rise three times: first. when they put the sourdough; second. when they knead the dough; third. after they put it into forms. It usually rises for 1-4 hours, depending on the density and the quantity and quality of the yeast added. It is very important for the dough to rise well, especially for the first and last time. Therefore, the dough should be left in a warm and draught-free place, and the volume of the dough should increase twofold or more.
- If the dough is thick and rises too slowly, you can knead it late at night and leave it overnight, and bake the cakes in the morning. But in this case, there is a danger that the dough may over-acidify and have an unpleasant taste. So sometimes it may be better to just add a little more yeast to make the dough rise more quickly. It is not recommended that the dough be heated from below when it is rising. then it will spread, not rise.
- If you still have to use dry yeast, then for every 500 grams. take 15 g of flour. dry yeast, and in this case add milk: as much as is prescribed in thick yeast.
- All shapes can be made. The classical shape of the cake is round.
- When the cake has risen, smear it with an egg and stick a kindling in its middle and put it in the oven. After a certain time it is necessary to take out the splinter: if the dough sticks to it, it means that the kulich is still raw; if the splinter turns out to be perfectly clean, the kulich is ready. Take it out of the oven, put it with one edge on a rack (on the side), so that the bottom cools down.
Bake the kulich in a humidified oven. To do this, place a container with hot water on its bottom (no need to put the container on an electric stove); the baking temperature is 170-220 degrees, depending on the dough, the kuliches weight and whether the oven is gas or electric.
The duration of baking depends on the size of the cake: a cake of less than 1 kg is baked for 30 minutes, a cake of 1 kg is baked for 30 minutes. 45 minutes, 1.5 kg 1 hour, 2 kg 1.5 hours. If the cake burns on top, it should be covered with damp tracing paper.
The taste of the loaf depends on the spices added to it. Vanilla, cardamom, nutmeg, saffron, lemon zest are added. A few tablespoons of cognac can be added. Put also raisins, candied fruits. These components and spices in the selected recipe can be changed depending on your taste and capabilities.
The dough for the cakes should be yellow, so it is necessary to add saffron to the cakes, even if it is not listed among the ingredients. Since real saffron (the stamens of a special crocus) is very expensive, you can buy “saffron” at the market, supposed to be for pilaf. Handle it this way. Soak 1 teaspoon of inflorescences in a glass of vodka in the evening, then strain in the morning and add this infusion to the dough.
To make the cakes bright yellow, buy eggs with red (bright) yolks.
Some hostesses add grated carrot or pumpkin to the dough, but this makes the dough heavier and deprives the product of the classic kulich spirit (in fact, it’s not quite a kulich anymore).
It is best to bake cakes in special tall cylindrical metal molds (preferably with a removable bottom), but if they are not available, you can use metal cans, aluminum pots of 1 1.5 liters., but no more. Do not get carried away with the very large size of the forms, since the modern gas stove does not allow you to bake such products, as in a Russian oven. The maximum height of a modern mould is 20. 25 cm.
If the dough turned out thick, you can make round cakes, put them on a greased baking tray, let them rise twice and bake without a mold.
The form, before placing the dough in it, is covered with oiled paper and sprinkled with flour, and, if specified in the recipe, sprinkled with breadcrumbs. Fill the mold 1/3 to ½ full with dough and let it rise to 2/3 of the height of the mold or to its edges, respectively.
It is best to take out the cakes on a soft cushion, covered with a cotton or linen napkin. After the kulich has cooled completely, you can take the paper off and put it on a board.
Ready cakes are usually covered with icing, decorated with symbolic inscriptions, sprinkled with chopped nuts, candied fruits, sugar balls or stained millet. This colored sprinkle is a sign of a classic kulich. All cakes are sprinkled with powdered sugar before serving.
Cutting the cake not lengthwise but crosswise, saving the top and covering the rest of the cake, so it would not dry out and stay pretty.
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Baking a right kulich (loaf tips)
When baking loafs, you must remember the basic rules, which largely determine how the loaf will turn out.
The main and indispensable decoration of the Easter table are cakes made of rich yeast dough, but tall and round. According to tradition, the shroud of Christ, buried according to Jewish custom, was round in shape. This explains the traditional round shape of the loaf. And it should be high because at the spring time of Easter everything in nature comes alive and pulls up.
The quality of the loaf depends mainly on the quality of the products used. Flour is taken with a fine grind and lightly warmed before use (it is recommended to scatter it in a thin layer on a napkin and dry for 2 days). The yeast should be fresh. The yolks of the eggs, if separated and kneaded separately, in more delicate pastries are rubbed through a sieve. The butter is boiled until it is clear, and cooled to the warmth of steamed milk before stirring. To prepare the dough, begin by thoroughly kneading the dough (take the following mixture ½ the entire norm of flour), and when it rises and increases in volume by about 2-3 times, it is not allowed to settle, add the rest of the flour, biscuits, salt, and begin to knead and beat for an hour, and for a more muffin pastry up to 2 hours. Spices are added along with the pastry, and almonds, raisins, candied fruits and the like are added to the ready dough. Then place in a greased and breadcrumbs sprinkled with breadcrumbs on the ½ its height, let it rise (a well-worked dough can rise several times higher than the one put in the mold), and to prevent the top of the gobble from deforming, a paper cup is put in the mold. The loaf is baked 1 ½-2ч. Take out and lay it on a cushion on its side to keep its shape. If the cake is to be covered with icing after baking, it should not be egged. Saffron (1 tbsp) gives a very nice color to the pastry. pour a spoonful of rum or water, infuse for 4 hours and strain), but its taste is not to everyone’s liking.
• The dough must not be runny, because the cakes will spread out and be flat, and it must not be thick. The cakes will be too heavy and unpalatable, they will quickly get stale. The dough should be thick enough to be cut with a knife, so it won’t stick and you won’t have to add more flour when dividing the loaf. Cut the kneaded dough with a knife. The density is just right if it doesn’t pull on the knife, doesn’t stick to it. Can be placed in molds.
• Knead the dough long and thoroughly. According to ancient legends, it should be beaten 300 times, so that the guests praise the kulich 300 times afterwards. Knead the dough as long as possible so that it comes off your hands, utensils, or table.
• The dough should be proofed three times: the first time. When dissolved; the second time. when it has been kneaded, the third time. the third time when it is separated and placed in molds or on a baking tray.
• Panettes do not like draughts, but like warmth, so the cakes should be kept warm at 30-45 degrees. The room where the cakes are made should have a temperature of at least 25.
• If the pastry has fallen. it’s no big deal. It will rise again.
• But here’s a little tip. If you have already spread the dough into forms and it has risen well, but when you try to put it in the oven, the top as if deflated and became flat. don’t expect it to rise again in the oven and become round. Better to wait with the baking and wait for the dough to rise again. Otherwise the cake may end up with a flat top. If you don’t let the cake rise completely, it will turn out dense and juicy. Dried fruits should be soaked beforehand, they will give moisture to the dough after baking. Dried fruits, raisins, candied fruits, after drying and before placing them in the dough, should be dipped in flour and then sifted (to remove excess flour)
• I kneaded the dough for the cakes by hand (the consistency of the dough was like pies), but you can make a lighter dough by adding less flour. in this case the dough should be kneaded with a mixer, as the consistency of the dough should be thicker than for fritters and more fluid than for cakes, and it should come off the walls of the bowl easily. you can not knead such dough by hand, but only with a spoon or a mixer until there are bubbles. this means that the dough is sufficiently enriched with oxygen
• In Russia, lots of dough was usually prepared for kulichki, because in a large volume it ferments better
• Kulichs are baked in molds of thin tin with a movable (removable) bottom.
• Be sure to line the cake pan with greased paper, not just butter or melted butter
• It is advisable to cover the inside of the form with baking paper, so that the loaf can be easily taken out of it.
• Butter your hands too. Picking up and tearing off pieces of dough by hand and placing them in the mold.
• The oven should be well preheated before putting the loaf into it, because only then will it maintain a uniform temperature during baking, which is very important
• Readiness of the cake for baking can be judged by its volume: the dough should rise almost to the rim of the mold.
• To make such a cake rise evenly, before placing it in the oven a wooden stick is stuck in the middle. After a certain time remove the stick. If it is dry, the cake is ready
• When ready for baking, brush the cake with an egg, beaten with 1 tbsp. With a spoonful of water, and butter, sprinkled with chopped pecans, coarse sugar, and breadcrumbs
• capricious Easter muffins do not like to be disturbed during baking, so try not to open the oven door unnecessarily, otherwise from a sharp drop in temperature the lush dough will fall off. If you notice that the cake is burning on top and it isn’t baked yet, cover it with damp parchment paper.
• Bake the cake in a humidified oven by placing a container of hot water on its bottom; the temperature is 200-240 C. (An average temperature for baking is 210, a moderate temperature of 160-180).
• in large molds the kulich also bake well, just so the top does not burn, after 10-15 minutes turn down the heat to 20 degrees and cover the top of the kulich with foil.
• The duration of baking depends on the size of the loaf. A bunch of less than 1 kg bake for 30 minutes, 1 kg. 45 minutes, 1.5 Kg. 1 hour, 2 kg. 1.5 hours. If the loaf burns on top, cover it with dry paper.
• Take the finished kulich out of the oven, place it on the side, and keep it in that position until the bottom cools.
• Finished cakes can be covered with icing and decorated with candied fruits.
Advice from a professional pastry chef
loaves and bakeries have a “combi-steam oven”. el. ovens with convection (forced mixing of hot air by a fan) and steam, which means that steam is injected into the cavity.
In the instructions for baking products from yeast dough (any), they say: so-and-so minutes, steam supply100% temperature, so-and-so.then minutes-50% the temperature is so-and-so, so-and-so.then minutes-without steam. temp so-and-so.
Convection is desirable to ensure that the product is baked evenly on all sides. In the home oven, this question is not as relevant as in the bakery.
And here’s some steam. It needs! Then the crust won’t form on the dough at the beginning of baking (and then burst when the inner layers of dough heat up and expand).
We must not allow the formation of a “shell” in the steam oven. That is why we use the general principle for baking COUNTRY DRAWERS (loaves, cakes, large closed pies):
At the beginning of baking spray it with any available method (preferably a fine spray of some kind or by mouth) and put it in the oven at a lower temperature (about 25-30% of the basic temperature).
In the process, gently open the oven a few times and spray again quickly with warm water until the surface of the dough is completely moistened.
Then raise the temperature a little and spray again or 2 more times. Then the temperature. normal, baking without steam, that is, we’ve created such conditions that the whole mass of dough can expand without being limited to caked crusts.
Slow heating ensures that the entire thickness of the dough is baked, not the outside. black and damp inside.
И. Finally, when the dough has had all the rising power, we don’t sprinkle any more. and let it finish baking and browning.
That’s the technique. Let me tell you right away that the paper forms won’t get sour, the dough won’t get damp, and the heating elements won’t burst
1 kg. flour, 1 ½ glass of milk. 6 eggs, 300g. butter or margarine, 1 ½. 2 cups granulated sugar, 40-50 gr. yeast. ½ teaspoon salt, 150g. raisins, 50 gr. candied fruits, 50g. almonds, ½ Either a sachet of vanilla sugar or 5 to 6 ground cardamom seeds.
Dissolve yeast in warm milk, add half of the flour, stir to avoid lumps, cover the bowl with a towel and put the stew in a warm place. When the volume of the sourdough has doubled, add to it salt, egg yolks whipped with sugar and vanilla, and whipped butter. Stir it all together, add the egg whites and the rest of the flour. The dough should not be very thick, but it should be well kneaded and come away from the sides of the bowl easily. Cover the dough and leave it in a warm place. When it has doubled in volume, add raisins (washed and dried, sprinkled with flour), diced candied fruits, and almonds, peeled and finely chopped. Mix it all with the dough and put it into the molds. For a more puffy cake fill the form to 1/3 of its height, and for a denser one. on 1/3 ½ heights. Prepare the mold: cover the bottom with a circle of greased baking paper, butter the sides and sprinkle with flour or ground crumbs, or you can put baking paper inside the height of the mold. When the mold is filled with dough, put it in a warm place and cover with a towel. When the dough has risen to ½ To bake the cake, brush the top with beaten egg and put it in a not too hot oven for 50-60 minutes. During baking, gently turn the form with the loaf, but do not shake it. To prevent the top of the gobble from burning, after it browns, cover it with a piece of paper moistened with water. To determine whether the cake is ready, stick a thin splinter into it: if it is dry the cake is ready, if there is still dough on it the cake is still wet. After cooling, the cake can be covered with icing and decorated with candied fruits, berries from jam, marmalade, chocolate figures, etc. д.
At what temperature to bake the kulich
Easter is a glorious feast. Every housewife tries to show a maximum of her skills on this day. Some people bake buns and pies, but this day does not do without the Easter kulich and painted eggs. Dyeing eggs is easy, but not every housewife can bake a beautiful and tasty one. This requires experience and knowledge. Without following the right technology, the cake may not turn out the way you want, or it may even be spoiled.
Prepare the dough for kulichki should only be in a warm place without the slightest draught, t.к. It does not like cold and sudden temperature changes. Take care of the temperature in the kitchen beforehand, close the windows beforehand if the room has been aired out. The ideal temperature for kneading dough is about 25 degrees, and for rising dough you need about 30-35 degrees. The heat must be evenly distributed.
The secrets of baking kulichniks, in detail and with a breakdown of possible mistakes
To begin with, it is absolutely necessary to make a decisive distinction between the yeast Spring Cupcakes already on the market and the Easter Kuliches. Easter kulich is a sacred object, it should be prepared with a soul, with a pure heart, otherwise you will get a pannettone at best.
The baking of kuliches takes place on Holy Thursday of Holy Week. They are put on the table on Good Friday, because Good Friday is not for business, At the end of the liturgy. With kulich, eggs and kisses people celebrate the Feast of the Holidays.
For kulichki you need quite a lot of everything it is the most festive baking, the composition is very rich. It makes no sense to bake one kulich too much effort, and it is imperative to share the kulich in church and with family, friends, neighbors and the poor. So count on at least two bakes. You can knead all the dough at once, but baking will have to be done in two or three steps, a conventional oven does not hold much.
Modern electric ovens have many modes: “Convection”, “Upper Heating”, “Lower Heating”, “Grill”, “Upper and Lower Heating plus convection.
Be sure to read the instructions to your electric oven and choose the appropriate mode when cooking.
In some models of electric ovens installed at once 2 fans: it is very convenient and allows you to cook two dishes simultaneously at different levels, because the heat is distributed in the oven constantly and evenly.
If you just choose to buy an oven, then I recommend you choose this oven, it will give you the opportunity to save time and energy for cooking two different dishes, for example, a crusty pie and baked meat with vegetables.
The mode “Grill”. it is difficult to imagine modern ovens and even some microwave ovens without it!
To ensure that the grilled meat is well done and succulent, the pieces of meat must be about the same thickness, at least 2 cm 3 cm thick.
Baking and Browning. Helpful Tips
Place pieces of meat directly on the wire shelf. Optionally, place multipurpose tray on level 1. The juice from frying will drip into it, and the oven will remain almost clean.
Meat, chicken, fish can also be baked in the “Convection” mode, and 5 minutes before the end of cooking, turn on the “Grill” mode and the dish will have a delicious brown crust.
Remember about the smoking point of the oil. If you set the temperature to high (over 240 degrees) and turn on the “Grill” mode, the oil can catch fire and the oven blows black smoke.
The automatic cooking program makes cooking very easy. You must choose the program and specify the food weight.
For example, my oven has the following programs: defrosting, cooking vegetables, potatoes, fish, pizza, etc.д.
But you should carefully read the instructions for your oven, to understand what program number is responsible for what. It looks like this for me: