I honestly haven’t been doing much baking since I landed in this new apartment last year. The oven has baffled me. Because I’m a pretty good baker. Since I learned to drive, I’ve spent every christmas helping my grandmother – who is the best baker I know who doesn’t own a bakery, her older sister being the only person to come in at a tie with her – make our family kolachi and cookies and generally learning the “tricks of the trade.” After ten years of this – and I don’t mean to sound cocky or full of myself even though I’m about to – I know what I’m doing. Or at least I did.
Except now, in this new oven, everything I bake burns. And I don’t mean “gets a little too brown,” I mean charred to a solid black on the bottom. Even the bottom of my pumpkin pies managed to burn when I made them this past thanksgiving. And that seriously NEVER happens.
I’ve tried everything. I’ve tried reducing the suggested cooking temp, thinking maybe my oven isn’t calibrated properly. I’ve tried recalibrating it. I’ve tried all the tricks my grandmother gave me for figuring out where the “hot spots” are (turns out its the WHOLE OVEN). I’ve tried using different pans, greasing them, not greasing them, using tin foil, not using tin foil… I haven’t used parchment paper mainly because if it can scorch scones the way it has (at a LOWER temp than they’re supposed to go in, and for less time!) I’m afraid it’ll start a fire!
So I haven’t been baking nearly as much as I used to – which is a shame, because for the first time in my life I have a KitchenAid Mixer, so it would be faster than ever. But every once in a while I miss it so much that I give it another shot. This time I whipped up some Chocolate Chip Scones using this recipe.
Overall, the recipe is a fine one – they turned out delicious. Except for the charred to a crisp bottoms. Again. But we just ate around that and they were lovely. Not quite as flakey as I’d have liked – they’re a little more cookie like in texture once baked for whatever reason, but still delicious. If it wasn’t for my oven being bizarre, I’d have ended up with A+ baked goods.
If anyone has any suggestions as to other ways I can attempt to solve this oven problem, please please please let me know!