When making cakes, you always need to make sure your butter is nice and soft. This is to ensure it combines fully with the rest of your baking ingredients to give a delicious well-risen cake.
If, like us, you prefer to use proper butter, using this simple technique to soften your butter will allow it to blend fully with the sugar and other dry ingredients that go into your cake. Butter that has not been sufficiently softened can leave small lumps of butter that make your baked cake greasy and the uncombined sugar can crystalise giving a crispy edge to your cake.
Just taking 10 minutes to soften your butter will give you light fluffy creamed butter and sugar, and a well-blended cake mixture for baking in the oven.
1. Cut your butter into cubes and put into a large mixing bowl.
2. Pour warm water over the cubed butter. Take care not to add water that’s too hot, as this will melt your butter – you only want to soften it. Ensure all the butter is completely covered.
3. Leave the butter for 10-12 minutes in the warm water until it squashes easily when you press it against the side of the bowl with your finger.
4. Drain the water into the sink.
5. Add your ingredients and follow your recipe as normal.
While your butter is softening, you can be preparing your cake tins with lining paper or by greasing them, breaking your eggs into a separate small bowl, and measuring out any other dry ingredients ready for adding. Once you get into a routine with your baking, softening the butter will just become part of your preparation and cake making process.