1) If I don't use a whole box of mix at a time, how long is it good for once it is opened?
Unopened dry mix has a shelf life of 372 days. It is advised to use the entire package within one month of opening. Once the plastic barrier is open you many notice minor changes due to humidity in your storeroom which can affect the leaveners in your mix. The product is still safe to use but the height of the finished baked good might be less, for example, you may observe a flatter top on your muffin instead of a high dome.
2) When I want to make a layer cake, should I freeze my layers before I ice them?
The most important thing to note is that the cake does in fact need to be completely cool before you ice it or the icing will melt and your layers will shift. Otherwise, if you want to slice your layers in half or thirds horizontally, many people find it easier to do once the layers are frozen. You also get fewer crumbs from frozen. If time is limited, you can build and frost a layer cake as soon as the cake rounds are cool. That usually takes about an hour after you take it out of the oven and de-pan it after 15-20 minutes and then place on a cooling rack to finish cooling. Remember to take off the parchment circles too after you take them out of the pan because that will also help speed of the process. If you are freezing the layers, keep the parchment on when you freeze them for better stability.
3) Why does my puff pastry shatter when I cut it?
This is normal for a flaky and fully baked pastry. For best results use a serrated knife when cutting.
4) Why are my muffins misshapen in shape when I bake them in the convection oven?
Be sure to rotate pans 180 degrees half way through baking to avoid this from happening in the convection oven.
5) When baking frozen cookie dough, why do my cookies spread so much?
It is advised to always follow the package directions when baking. Cookie dough may have been thawed, oven temperature is too cold or the pan may have too much grease on it.
6) I want to make a fancy dessert. Can I add alcohol or flavored syrups to my muffins or cake mix to make new flavors like baileys and cream chocolate cake?
While it is tempting to add alcohol or syrup to your cake mix for flavor, you can actually use too much which would cost more. Heat can evaporate some or all of the alcohol and frequently the alcohol is also the carrier for many extracts and syrups. It would be better to flavor your simple syrup or your icing with a very small quantity and then use a candy, toasted nut, chocolate shavings or other garnish to add additional fanciness to your creation. Adding the extra sugar from the syrup or too much alcohol will make the cake "heavy" and the center of the cake will fall.
7) I don't have a traditional kitchen, just a satellite. Can I prepare your products in a (blank) oven (speed cook, impinger, pizza oven, etc)?
Yes, you can. However, our products have been designed for the most commonly used types of ovens in the Foodservice environment. In many cases, we have baked a particular product in some of those ovens and had the product fully bake through. The difficulty we face is consistency and we want you to have a positive experience with our products. Due to that variability and sometimes due to food safety concerns, we do not issue instructions unless we can consistently duplicate the results every time.