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Need help with some base recipes...

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Good morning everyone, and thank you in advance for helping out.  I am always wanting to test out new recipe ideas that come into my mind, but I also don't want to waste a bunch of ingredients, should the end result not come out great.  Could you guys help me out with some base or foundation recipes? This could be for a variety of things, for example - a base recipe ratio for cake... how much flour, sugar, eggs, etc - which I can then take, and alter with my additions and flavors, etc. - I get a little confused, thinking... well I have this recipe here for a basic yellow cake, for example... but if I want to turn that into a chocolate cake, and add cocoa powder, will that change the texture of the cake because it's more "dry" ingredient being added? I hope this makes sense... essentially, I'd just like a few simple recipes that I can commit to memory, and change around as needed . I'd like to have some "go to" recipes in my head, so for example (not that I'm planning on it, but just an example) if I'm on a show like Chopped, and given various ingredients, I could use my "base" recipe for something, and apply the ingredients I've been given to make a new dish.  This could be for cookies, cakes, brownies, breads, anything - even savory.  Thank you everyone, I hope I didn't come across sounding too ridiculous here :crazy:

post #2 of 11

sounding too . . .


well, oversimplified comes to mind.


first if you are a student of cooking and have not yet heard:

cooking is an art, baking is a science.


for your cake idea, you're toast.  any number of the ingredients mentioned will cause the whole blinking thing to be different.


otoh, make a roux, add a liquid to make a white sauce, you can add/flavor/expand it to become only two or three billion different dishes.  presuming it's not over salted.


in today's Internet world, you can find recipes for most anything. 

not all are good - done 'wasted' darned decent ingredients on recipes that just did not work out well.

part of cooking - try it, you might like it.  or not.

post #3 of 11
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thank you, French Fries.... that is very helpful... that's along the lines of what I'm looking for. =)

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hi Dillbert,


Yes, that's the part that I have trouble with, is the fact that baking is a science.  In the cooking department, I'm fine with adjusting sauces, etc. and creating several variations, as you don't have to be as precise as you do in baking.  And that was what worried me, such as my comment about adding cocoa to a basic yellow cake, and throwing off the dry component, etc. - if there was something like "to add 1/4 cup of cocoa, remove 1/4 cup of flour that's called for in recipe, etc etc" that would be what I'm after.  Thanks for the input =)

post #6 of 11
Originally Posted by juju1205 View Post

Thank you, French Fries.... that is very helpful... that's along the lines of what I'm looking for. =)

Here are a couple free ones:



post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thank you!!!!!!!! This will definitely come in handy when experimenting :chef: really appreciate it!

post #8 of 11

You're welcome! And personally I don't worry too much about baking being a "science". I'm not an expert baker, but I can make pancakes, crepes, pie doughs or custards without recipes and without measuring anything. Once you know the consistency you're going for, and how each ingredient affects the consistency, you don't need a recipe, in fact you'll do better without one. For example: if a pie dough is a little too crumbly and doesn't come together, add water. If it's too sticky and difficult to handle because it won't come off your fingers, add flour. 

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

All very good points... I think once I've tried a few different recipes, and like you said, I get to know the consistency of each one, I can then work with them more freely... I don't plan on, or want to be a "master baker" or anything like that at all, just to have a couple solid recipes under my belt, and in my mind, that I can always "go to" to play around with.  Thanks!

post #10 of 11

I have this odd mental block, which I do believe I've mentioned before.  I rarely use actual recipes for anything.  But for some reason I always have to refer to a recipe when making pie crusts.  For some reason that one thing just will NOT stay in my brain.



Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 

That's ok... I try to remember the "3-2-1" recipe, but it doesn't always work out perfectly. :blush::)

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