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4 Ways To Step Up Your Baking Skills

4 Ways To Step Up Your Baking Skills

People who work in the food industry sometimes say that cooking is an art and baking is a science. When a person is cooking, he or she can add or omit recipe ingredients according to personal preference. With baking, however, exact amounts of ingredients must be used and certain methods should be followed. If you’ve been looking for a way to improve your baking skills, here are four ways to step up your game.

1. Read Cookbooks

Some of the best recipes for baked goods have been contained in the pages of cookbooks for many years. Whether you’re looking for a new variation on cream puffs or seeking advice on how to properly prepare an apple-walnut bread, there’s a good chance that the information can be found in a cookbook. Cookbooks are great because they give you step-by-step instructions. That means if you follow them exactly, you should be able to create a masterpiece!

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2. Watch Television Cooking Shows

A broad spectrum of cooking programs are regularly aired on lots of different television networks. Check the TV listings to see when shows devoted to baking are scheduled. Most of the instructional baking shows that are aired on television are taught by very qualified instructors. You can also record shows that are dedicated to baking or look them up online. That way you can pause, rewind, and fast-forward as needed. You never have to miss a step again.

3. Enroll In A Baking Class

Nothing beats hands-on experience when it comes to stepping up your baking skills. There are all sorts of baking classes offered at community colleges, local cooking schools, culinary schools, local night school programs, and even at supermarkets. When you decide to further your baking knowledge, you can usually find classes that fit into your schedule. There is definitely no better way to learn something than to get hands-on experience. Also, by taking classes, you can learn tips and tricks from a professional baker. Those are things that you may not be able to learn anywhere else. Taking classes is definitely worth the time and money.

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In addition to learning more about baking techniques, you will probably be learning about the science of baking. There are many things to learn about temperatures, measuring, and even common uses for sodium bicarbonate. More commonly known as baking soda, sodium bicarbonate is a chemical agent that causes cake batters to delightfully rise when they are baked. Sodium bicarbonate is also useful for soothing upset stomachs and treating some allergic reactions. This product also works great as a refrigerator deodorizer. Simply place a box of baking soda on a shelf in your refrigerator and it will help to absorb any unpleasant odors that may be present.

4. Research Baking Recipes And Techniques Online

There are many Internet websites that provide excellent content related to improving one’s baking skills. Plenty of recipes and baking tips are offered, and video baking tutorials are often available. You can also find basic tips and tricks to help your food turn out even better! You can learn things like how to make your bread fluffier or how to make your brownies not stick to the pan. The internet is home to a ton of really great resources, all you have to do is look for them.

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No matter how long you’ve been baking, there are always lots of new recipes, tips, and techniques that you can learn. Baking isn’t always easy, but it definitely can be a ton of fun for you and your whole family.

With this information, you will be baking better bread in no time! Check out more kitchen hacks with 55 Special Uses For Baking Soda You Never Knew.

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Featured photo credit: Pixabay – Couleur via pixabay.com

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Kara Masterson

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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