In this post I digress from creating to cleaning. Food preparation must always go hand in hand with hygiene and cleanliness, and, although the Food Safety regulations require the use of strong chemicals to maintain a 99% germ free environment for food preparation, I still prefer to use my own natural or home made cleaning products.
There are several ordinary kitchen ingredients that I use when I clean my kitchen and baking utensils (actually I use these for just about everything in my house).
I use white vinegar, lemons, olive oil/vegetable oil, baking soda, used green tea bags, baking powder, walnuts and a list of many other ordinary kitchen products and ingredients. Each item has their own valuable use. However, you will be surprised to know that my favourite of all these items, is the humble baking powder…hold on, you might say, “but, don’t you mean the baking soda?”
Nope, I meant the baking powder – I do know about the baking soda and how it is also useful, but I will prove to you why I believe the baking powder outshines the baking soda, and why, it is the best cleaning ingredient to use, in cake artistry.
Background Information About Baking Powder
In the past, the process of baking was very painful (when pounding or kneading for hours to get the correct texture) and used to take hours waiting, for the baked goods to rise under the correct temperatures. Failure to rise meant that the whole process had to be repeated or the household was forced to eat rock breads and cakes, (hey, I remember this in the Flintstones cartoon!).
According to an article written by Ben Panko, in Smithsonian.com, a British Chemist by the name of Alfred Bird, created baking powder in the late 1840s. He combined cream of tartar with baking soda, as a way to assist his wife’s bread making. However, cream of tartar was too expensive and each ingredient had to be used separately to avoid reacting too early prior to being baked.
The patent and refinement of baking powder into what we now know and use, came about in 1856, by Eben Norton Horsford a young chemist, driven by the search for an alternative product. Later in history many other companies joined in further improving this food chemical ingredient. Baking powder has become a multi million dollar industry, which is hard to believe when you look at how cheap and humble the ingredients are.
Ingredients in Baking Powder
Originally, and in fact quite interestingly, baking powder, was made from a combination of mono calcium phosphate (extracted from, boiled down animal bones) and baking soda. The resulting compound was an acid that created the much-needed CO2 bubbles.
Nowadays, it is made from mined mono calcium phosphate (rather than boiled down animal bones, and this is the part where all the vegetarians sigh in relief) and baking soda.
As far as baking is concerned, I am happy with the fact, that I do not have to pound or wait for hours for my cakes to rise.
So why do I use baking powder for cleaning?
Simple: it can be used on its own or just with water. Huh? you may say…
I will repeat it: it can be used by itself or with water. It is cheap to buy.
Then you might respond, how did you come up with such a brilliant (or dumb) idea?
Well, I came upon this, by accident.
One day whilst cleaning my bath tub, which was ringed with greasy dirt residue (my least favourite area to clean), I wanted to use something that wasn’t going to make me high and queasy. I had read many reviews about baking soda before being used together with white vinegar, so I got some from my kitchen and mixed as required in a spray bottle.
I was amazed by how quick and easy the application was. The bath tub shone, like it was never used (I banned my family from it for a few days but that didn’t last).
Okay, so I wanted to bake a cake that evening and after rummaging through my cupboard, found my baking soda untouched and my baking powder all used up.
Hmm, I thought, surely I bought a new box (both baking soda and baking powder have very similar Edmonds packaging). It dawned on me that I had used the baking powder by mistake. That’s when I also realized that I may have found my miracle cleaning ingredient. Aha! Baking Powder.
I do not fully understand the full chemical stuff that goes on behind baking powder, but I do remember when I was young many eons ago) having being told to use baking powder to oust a fire on the stove. This practice still works, you know. However, other than that, the only thing I do know for sure is that there is something about baking powder that makes it slightly different as a cleaning agent.
I guess, this I will understand in due time with more research, but for now, it cleans very well and that is all that matters.
There are many ways that I would like to share about how I use baking powder, but I would like to show you how I use it specifically, for when I have finished my cake artistry. So here we go.
My Kitchen hack for cleaning baking ware
If you are like me, and have to clean a lot of baking ware/pans with hard to clean cake residue then follow these simple instructions. I promise you that you won’t need to scrape or scratch your baking tins so that they end up looking like my image below.
To my family’s delight I woke up early this morning and baked a few cupcakes (all eaten by the time I took these photos), so that I could show you how I clean my bake ware with baking powder.
I purposefully created a mess so that I can have some hard to clean baked residue. These spots harden when cooled and are very hard to clean.
- First pour or spray cold water into the baking tin.
- Use a food grade brush to brush the baking powder on to each spot to be cleaned.
- When the baking powder has been brushed on to the baked residue, spray again with water and leave for 5-10 minutes.
- After the minutes are up, use a water soaked kitchen cloth and wipe the spots off. You will find that they come off easily.
- Rinse the baking tin under cold water to clean everything and to make sure that no more residues have remained.
- You will now have a beautifully cleaned bake ware, and best of all there are no harsh scratches.
- A closer look below
And there you have it. Baking powder doesn’t need vinegar, the cleaning process is quick, and your bake ware, will be left without any scratches. Baking powder is a non toxic chemical that will not fume you to high heavens, and is very cheap to buy. Try it and see, for yourself.
Thank you again for visiting my post. What are your most favourite bake-ware cleaning products/ingredients? Do share if you found this post useful to you in any way, or comment on anything that you may need help in.
Have a lovely day and see you again in my next post,