The pre-requisite to success in this work is similar to that in any other kind of work, viz., "Plan, then work out your plan." Take the preparation of the first recipe given for whole wheat puffs, for an example.
The first step to be taken is to see that the fire is built in time, so the oven will be of the proper temperature when the batter is ready. Use only heavy iron gem pans, which should be put in the oven to heat while the batter is in preparation. Have all the ingredients measured, and the needed utensils all at hand before starting to conbine the articles for bread. This is very essential in all baking; especially so in making aerated breads, cakes, etc. Another point that needs to be emphasized is the need of accurate measurments. There are some simple things which an experienced cook can make without taking the trouble to measure, but how often we hear the remark made of "good luck" or "bad luck" with a recipe. Now there is no such thing as "luck," for the simple reason that every effect has its cause, and this is as true in cooking as in other kinds of work. If we have a good recipe and follow it exactly, using exact measurements, there is no reason why we should not get the same results each time.
The ordinary kitchen cup, holding one-half pint, with divisions indicating the half, third, and fourth parts of a cupful, is generally taken as the standard. Unless otherwise stated, a cup, tablespoon, or teaspoon of liquid or dry materials means a measure that is "level full." In dry measure this is best accomplished by filling the measure full and running the blade of a knife over the top with the edge outward to make it level. Care should be taken not to pack the ingredients; for this reason, weighing is always considered the safest, although not always as convenient as measuring.
It might be well to state here that there are many measuring cups on the market, sold as one-half pint cups, that hold quite a little more than that amount. Care should be exercised in getting a cup measure which holds one-fourth of a quart. If a larger one is used, allowance must be made.
When oil is called for in a recipe for shortening or for cooking, the refined cottonseed oil is generally used. Being tasteless and odorless, it can be used with good success where free fat is necessary. Dairy butter may be used in the place of these fats in most instances, using a little more of the butter than when the pure fat is used. There is, however, great danger of disease through the use of butter. The per centage of turberculous cattle in herds from which our public milk supply is derived, is astounding. As the cream rises to the surface of the milk, the tubercle bacilli lodged therein find access to our foods and to our tables through the use of butter. Milk when used should b" thoroughly sterilized. This can be accomplished by putting the milk into a double boiler and heating it to a temperature of 160° F., and keeping it at that temperature for ten minntes, then setting the inner part of the boiler, with milk, into cold water to cool. By this method the milk is not chemically changed, as it is when boiled, and there is less danger of contracting disease through its use.
As a guide in measuring, the following table will be helpful, and may be followed with good results.
3 teaspoons equal - 1 tablespoon 2 tablesp ons of sugar or liquid - 1 ounce 16 tablespoons 1 cup.
4 cups - 1 quart 4 cups sifted flour - - - 1 pound 2 cups sugar, water, and most liquids ".