Baking Essentials (Baking Basics for Beginners) - Part 1

I have been thinking to post this since long as I had been queried by friends and readers about the baking tins I use, where I get the ingredients, and my oven(which I will work on a seperate post). These are the common queries I get these days, so thought this post might be helpful as I know the hassles I went through personally while shopping for baking items and the situation was even more worse when I moved to CBE. Most of times the shopkeepers starred at me as if I was speaking in my own language ;)

I have tried my best to compile most items I've used in my baking, if you find anything missing, please drop a comment, will edit to add :)

Choco Chips
The first and foremost essential item is the measuring cups and spoons. I use it for baking and even for everyday cooking most of the times. Though these may not be accurate for the gram measures, I have been using it since I started baking. If you are at Chennai try these at Santosh Super stores or any departmental stores(You will get the red ones). I got mine from Nilgiris here in Coimbatore. When I searched for these measuring cups I understood many shops had it even without realising the name of it so help yourself in the shops instead of asking them.

I also have a cup which has different measures for maida, sugar, rice flour etc in gms(the orange tumbler kind shown in the pic) - So these are the ones I am using / will be using till I find a proper kitchen scale. My cup and spoon measures are :
  • 1 cup = 250 ml
  • 1/2 cup = 125 ml
  • 1/3 cup = 80 ml
  • 1/4 cup = 60 ml
  • 1 tbsp = 15 ml
  • 1/2 tbsp = 7.5 ml
  • 1 tsp = 5 ml
  • 1/2 tsp = 2.5 ml

Measuring Cups & Spoons

The next thing you will need will be a mixing bowl which is wide and easy to mix - I use a normal mixing basin which I use for cooking(am still searching for a proper mixing bowl esp for baking). Next is the whisk which you need for mixing cake batter.
Bowl, Whisk and Accessories

Utensils & Others:
  • Mixing bowl - Use a wide and deeper bowl
  • Spatula and Whisk - I got in Nilgiris, you can find it in any supermarket
  • Measuring cups and Spoons - Dept stores
  • Baking/ Cookie tray - It came with my oven itself essential for cookies and pizzas
  • Wire rack - This also came with my oven itself
  • Baking Tins - To start with you can get a Bread loaf and a Round / Square tin
  • Muffin pans
  • Ramekins (the ones you see here holding nuts , chocochips etc) - Additional , you may require them for any puddings or lava cake. I got mine from Currimboys and Poppad Jammal
  • Cookie Cutters - I havent had luck getting many shapes. If you dont get any fancy ones just use a small lid to cut into circles.
  • Aluminium foil - Needed only for pizzas or for any grilling, you can get the roll in any dept store. You can use butter paper as an alternate as we get it in any stationary shop.
Cooking Chocolate
You can check out the standard pan sizes in joyofbaking
What I have is a bread loaf pan 9'' X 3'' which I have used in my bakes:
Bread Loaf Pan
A cookie tray is a must for baking cookies, mine came with my OTG itself. I make bread pizza in this and the veg pizza using the collecting tray. Other than that, I have a round and a floral tin(nonstickware) which is the only nonstick baking tin I have. I havent used silicon wares but have heard good reviews from many of our blogger friends. I personally like the aluminium baking tins than the nonstick ones.

Cakes that I baked in floral and round pan:

For almost all cookies posted here I used the same tray
Cookie Tray and Cake Tins

Muffins pans, you can again opt for siliconware or even nonstick. But I feel we use muffin liners most of the times so sticking is not a problem at all. Individual silicion muffin moulds are also available in the markets. Mine is aluminium as you can see it here.
Muffins TrayI use the square pan - 6'' X 6'' for all my mini bakes. Its a small one.
Square Pan
Coming to the bundt pan...I searched for almost a year but coudnt find a right one. As most of them I saw were oversized, finally found this at Nilgiris.
Bundt Pan
I got all my baking pans from Santosh Super Stores(Annanagar, Chennai) except for the floral nonstickware and the bundt which I got from Nilgiris. I must admit not all Nilgiris branch has baking tins, try out in the main branch at your city.

I dont have many cookiecutters only 2-3 most of the times I use the round lid. I have got many things out of curiosity but sparsely use them(got them froma wholesale bakery retailer). Few among them are the icing cone and nozzles, which I havent used much. Even my tart pans are waiting for almost 2 yrs for me to experiment.

Baking Accessories
Baking Ingredients Needed (What to get and Where) :
  • Maida (All Purpose Flour) - I use Nilgiris brand
  • Granulated Sugar - Its again Nilgiris brand
  • Icing Sugar - Bakers
  • Demerera sugar - Bluebird
  • Baking powder - Bakers
  • Baking soda - Weikfield / Bakers
  • Vanilla Essence(Black one) - Tiger brand from Nilgiris
  • Coco Powder - Its cadbury
  • Gelatin and China Grass - Bakers
  • Condensed Milk - Amul / Nestle
  • Yeast - Bakers or Bluebird
  • Custard powder - Pillsbury
  • Chocolate chips - From nuts & spices or nilgiris
  • Butterscotch chips - From nuts & spices
  • Cooking Chocolate - Marco / Morde from Nuts & Spices
  • Mozzarella cheese - Amul
  • Cheddar cheese - It can be either Amul or Britannia.
  • Whip Cream powder - Bluebird
  • Yogurt - Nilgiris / Amul
  • Fresh Cream - Amul
  • Butter - Its always homemade butter sometimes I use Nutralite
  • Cooking Oil - Saffola
  • Olive Oil - Extra virgin olive oil the brand I am using now is Figaro
  • Milk - Its Aavin green if its full cream milk or blue which is low fat
  • Dry Fruits and Nuts - I get it from a local dryfruits store
Self rising flour : I have seen it in Nuts and Spices but havent used it as I find normal All purpose flour itself working fine.
Vanilla Pound CakeAll the nuts and dry fruits I prefer getting it in dryfruits shop where its good. I always stock up walnuts and badam. Tutti frutti I get only when there is need. Other than that dates is always found in my pantry as I love them to eat it as such :)

Dry Fruits & Nuts

Disclamer : The products mentioned here are not meant for advertisement. This is not a paid or any kind of promotion for any product or shop. These are the products I use and shops I visit as per my preference which I have shared here to help others who find it difficult to shop for baking items.

Snowball Cookies

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