If you’re an avid home baker, you’ll want to ensure that you always have some basic ingredients on hand. This is so that when you feel like baking in the spur of the moment, you can conveniently whip up cakes, pastries, cookies or whatever you desire without having to take a trip to the supermarket to purchase baking supplies.
First and foremost, you should always have flour at the ready as it is usually the fundamental ingredient for any baking product. Currently, there are many types of flour in the market such as self-rising flour, cake flour, bread flour and more. Depending on what sort of baking product you like to bake (cakes, biscuits or bread), you can stock at least one type of flour in your pantry.
However, if you’re more of an adventurous person and prefer to bake different types of baking goods, you can always opt to purchase high-quality all-purpose flour. Another type of flour that you should have besides the all-purpose flour is corn starch. Corn starch is a finely ground corn flour that is great for mixing with all-purpose flour to produce pastry flour. Helpful tip, you can actually purchase high quality flour from the comfort of your home via Essentials Malaysia.
Other key ingredients that should always be stocked in a baker’s pantry are baking soda and baking powder. Why not one or the other? This is because baking soda and baking powder function in different ways and produce different results. Basically, baking powder already has its own acid while baking soda (which lacks its own acid) is usually used in recipes that have an acidic component such as citrus and sour cream. If you like baking bread, you can also consider stocking yeast along with baking soda and baking powder. For these ingredients, ensure that they are always stored at room temperature in a dry pantry.
Another important leavener that you should always have are eggs. Although they have a shorter shelf life, eggs have many uses so if you can’t use them all for baking before they spoil, you can always cook the remaining eggs for one of your meals!
Additional Ingredients That You Fancy
Although many home bakers like the vanilla version of a baking recipe, there are those who like experimenting and adding in ingredients that they like to pre-existing baking recipes. If you’re that type of adventurous baker, you can always keep a few ingredients that you like and those that have multiple uses in your pantry. For example, products like Lotus Biscoff Spread can be used as a core ingredient in cake or cookie recipes. However, it can also be used as a bread spread so in case you’re not baking for a certain amount of time, it will not go to waste. Other types of versatile ingredients are nuts. Be it almond nuts, cashew nuts or any type of nuts really, they can be used as an ingredient for baking or eaten as a snack so you can be sure they won’t go to waste. These are just a few examples but there are of course tons of other ingredients you can choose to add to your pantry depending on your preference.
Fats are also one of the essential ingredients in baking. There are a variety of choices you can choose from when it comes to fats for baking. The usual options are shortening, butter, margarine and oil. In some instances, you can substitute one type of fat for another depending on whether it's sold or liquid. For example, you can’t replace oil with solid fat like shortening, margarine or butter but you can substitute shortening for oil by melting it and measuring it the same way you would with the oil. Besides butter like Planta and margarine, most of these fats have a solid shelf life and can be stocked in your pantry for some time.
Many baking recipes require some form of sweeteners unless there are already other sweet ingredients that are included in the recipe such as chocolate and fruits. Common sweeteners that any baker should have in their pantry are granulated sugar and brown sugar. These are useful when you’re baking sweet baking products like cakes and biscuits. However, if you’re looking for a healthier option, honey can also be a great substitute as a sweetener. The flavour of the baking product will of course differ slightly but usually you can’t go wrong with honey if used properly!