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Burnt Again! - what am i doing wrong??

aussiewonder Jan 30, 2008 05:27 AM

hi all,
I'm famous for my corn bread muffins, unfortunately they always seem to be black bottomed. They don't taste burnt but are very black. I chalked it up to the yoghurt and cheese in the mix that burns when in contact with the pan - non-stick Pam sprayed muffin tin. But then last week, I made bananna bread and it happened again - ceramic greased loaf tin. Last night I made cornish pasties which I baked on parchement paper on a tray in the oven and the bottom of those burnt too - no spray but plenty of butter and a tad cream in the pastry mix.

What am i doing wrong?
Should i NOT spray non-stick?
What about when baking on parchment paper?
Is it the dairy ingredients that's causing this?

Please help, originally i could stave off the jokes w/ the corn bread muffins but now....it's not so funny.

  1. v
    violabratsche Jan 30, 2008 01:38 PM

    I absolutely agree with all the other postings. I have one other suggestion.
    It came from the idea that in baking in a fire-heated brick oven, the temp cools off as it bakes.
    I pre-heat my oven to a higher temperature than I expect to use. Why? Because every time the oven door is opened, one has to expect to lose approx 10% of the temperature. So, I pre-heat to 400, then turn it down to 350, if that's the suggested baking temp. I also know that my oven's thermostat is relatively consistant. The point is that the element (I only have access to electric, here) will not turn on, and radiate extreme heat from below the item that I'm baking. Also, I make sure that the oven has reached it's temp for at least 10 minutes before I want to start using it, so that the oven becomes "comfortable" at that temp.
    Get an oven thermometer, though...you won't regret it, if even for the peace of mind that the thermostat is correct.

    AnnieG

    1 Reply
    1. re: violabratsche
      yayadave Jan 30, 2008 07:37 PM

      "The point is that the element (I only have access to electric, here) will not turn on, and radiate extreme heat from below the item that I'm baking."

      That seems like a worthwhile thought.

    2. q
      QSheba Jan 30, 2008 09:52 AM

      I second Jboeke's suggestion... dark colored baking sheets/cupcake pans/etc. have a tendency to burn the bottom. Just pick up some plain bakeware with a steel/silver color- not dark and nonstick- and line with parchment. Good Luck! :)

      1. johnmlinn Jan 30, 2008 08:22 AM

        Here's a trick if your oven is scorching the bottom of your food: Put an empty sheet pan on the rack below the goods you're baking. Ovens should theoretically cook with indirect heat, but it sounds like there's a design flaw in yours causing the bottom element to project it's heat directly at the food. The sheet on the rack below it will help keep the direct heat off of your goods.

        1 Reply
        1. re: johnmlinn
          b
          baloney Jan 30, 2008 08:27 AM

          And a slight variation on john's suggestion, double stack your trays. It might help distribute the heat more evenly.

        2. d
          Diane in Bexley Jan 30, 2008 08:08 AM

          Are you using a regular or convection oven? When we installed our convectionoven quite a few years ago, I had to re-learn and re-adjust quite a few recipes. Because of the fan, the convection oven can brown things way too fast. If using convection oven, lower the temperature 25 degrees or so and test 5-10 min sooner than normal. Also agree that you check your oven temperature with an accurate thermometer to make sure oven isn't overheating and temperature is inaccurate.

          1. Morganna Jan 30, 2008 07:11 AM

            Are you preheating your oven? And does your oven hold temperature well without having to turn on too often? Sounds like the bottom element is on and is scorching the bottoms of your baked goods. Like someone else suggested, maybe raise them up a bit higher in the oven.

            1. d
              drgnflychic Jan 30, 2008 06:50 AM

              I was going to suggest moving your baking rack up too or adjusting your temperature to allow you to cook things longer so the bottom doesn't cook so quickly.

              1. danhole Jan 30, 2008 05:38 AM

                Have you checked your oven to make sure the temperature is accurate? Another thought is what rack are you cooking with, because if it is too low in the oven it can burn the bottom of baked goods. Maybe try moving them up a notch. Should be in the center but maybe you need to try it higher than that.

                1. jboeke Jan 30, 2008 05:31 AM

                  I would say parchment paper and cupcake liners would solve your problem, but it sounds like you tried that. What kind of sheet pan are you using? The most basic, nothing, aluminum pan is the best kind to use with parchment liners. If you use non-stick coated ones, really heavy ones, or sometimes the "airbake" ones, you can get more burning.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jboeke
                    aussiewonder Jan 30, 2008 05:34 AM

                    Yep, using parchment paper - have tried spray w/ Pam and not spray w/ Pam methods with paper. The pans and muffin tins are good quality ones, non-stick, not airbaked.

                    1. re: jboeke
                      maplesugar Jan 30, 2008 11:05 AM

                      Funny you should mention airbake. I use them because I find they provide the most even browning. I've never had burnt bottoms using insulated cookie sheets...I also use the 9x13 airbake pan for brownies, works like a charm. The airbake pans I have are all shiny metal not non-stick though... maybe that's the difference?

                      aussiewonder: I second, um rather I third the suggestion to use a 2nd pan to deflect heat and definitely check your oven temp.

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