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Simple Tip: Keep a Ruler in Your Kitchen

When improvising in the kitchen, I like to "eyeball" measurements, as Rachael Ray would say. But if there's one scenario when I like to be exact, it's baking. While I'm rolling out dough for anything from tarts to pizza to shortcakes, I prefer to be precise, because variations in size can have a significant impact on baking time. That's why I always keep a ruler handy — so for instance, I can be sure that my breakfast tart is exactly 10 inches by eight inches, like it should be.

I shelled out an extra dollar on a designated kitchen ruler so it's always at arm's length when I'm up to my elbows in flour and isn't covered with anything questionable, like miscellaneous pen marks. Do you keep a ruler in the kitchen? What other measures do you take (no pun intended) to ensure that your baked goods come out right?

Join The Conversation
wunami wunami 7 years
Even in baking, I often just estimate the smaller measurements (ie. measuring spoon sized stuff). Works fine. You don't necessarily need to be that precise. Also, different ovens have different cook times. So I have to check for doneness anyway rather than use the exact time listed on the recipe. When I write up a recipe for my file, I usually try to include the characteristics of doneness in addition to an estimated time (ie. edges browned or slightly jiggly, etc.). That's how I make sure they come out right.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
Hmm...I don't usually measure stuff in the kitchen. If I need my pastry to be a certain size, I generally use the pan to kind of trace the size.
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