How to Clean 6 Essential Baking Tools

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Whether it’s a hobby, a passion, or a job; baking is a wonderful thing, and the results, often fruitful! Of course, with freshly baked goods comes the messy aftermath! Apart from a kitchen that needs thorough cleaning thanks to the batter spills, flour sprinkled around the counter, and crumbs everywhere, you have to deal with dirty, greasy baking tools with caked-on (and sometimes burnt-on) gunk. 

No, it’s not always easy to clean these different baking essentials, however, thorough cleaning is incredibly important for sanitary reasons, as well as keeping the tools in good condition. While some baking items require a simple, straightforward cleaning process, other essentials are a bit more tricky to clean. This is especially true where cookie cutters and other baking essentials with crevices are concerned. Nevertheless, Simply Maid has got all the cleaning tricks you need to thoroughly clean your essential baking tools! Read on.

How to Clean a Wooden Rolling Pin

Although wooden rolling pins are made to last for decades, improper cleaning techniques often see the end of your once-perfect rolling pin. Some of the most common cleaning mistakes include soaking the item in water, cleaning with abrasive scrubbers/cleaning agents, and washing them inside the dishwasher. 

So, when it’s time to clean your wooden rolling pin after a baking session, avoid the cleaning techniques above, and follow the steps below:

    1. Heat up some water in a pot; the temperature should be hot, yet warm enough to touch.
    2. Dip a clean dish towel in the water and wring it so that it is merely damp.
    3. Use the cloth to wipe down the rolling pin thoroughly. The warmth from the cloth will help remove dried dough and grease. 
    4. If the rolling pin requires a deep clean or scrubbing, use mild dish soap, warm water, and a soft, non-abrasive scrubber to clean it. Rinse it thoroughly thereafter.
    5. Whether you wipe the rolling pin with a damp cloth or wash it with soapy water, you should end either cleaning method by wiping the wood with a dry towel, and leaving the damp rolling pin to air-dry completely before storing.

How to Clean Baking Sheets

By the time a stainless steel baking sheet cools down, much of the grease and spills are already dry and clinging to the surface. On top of that, the corners typically accumulate cooked/burnt batter which is difficult to remove from such a tight space. Fortunately, the cleaning method below makes the entire process fairly simple.

Follow these steps to clean your baking sheet with baking soda and vinegar:

    1. Plug your kitchen sink and fill it with hot water. Make sure that your sink is clean before doing this.
    2. Add in 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar, and 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda. Give the water a quick stir to combine the ingredients.
    3. Allow the baking sheet to soak in this solution for a good 1 hour. If it is not too greasy, 30 minutes of soaking time will suffice.
    4. Next, scrub the baking sheet with a cleaning brush or kitchen scrubber to remove stuck-on foods.
    5. For the corners, use a toothpick or a clean paintbrush to remove debris.
    6. Finally, rinse the baking sheets thoroughly, and leave them to air-dry. 

If there is a persistent smell that you would like to get rid of, simply wash the baking sheet with water and dish soap after applying the baking soda-vinegar method. 

How to Clean Cookie Cutters

From basic shapes to intricate patterns, cookie cutters have come a long way! This, however, has made cleaning them a tad bit trickier. Thanks to their tight corners and many crevices, cookie dough gets stuck in these very hard-to-reach nooks and crannies and therefore, requires a self-cleaning method to get the cutters cleaned up thoroughly.

Use these quick and easy steps to clean your metal and copper cookie cutters:

    1. Soak the dirty cookie cutters in a hot soapy solution. Grease-fighting dish soap is recommended for this. 
    2. Allow the cookie cutters to soak for 10-20 minutes. The grease and dough stuck in crevices will loosen out during this time; therefore, the longer you leave them soaking, the better.
    3. Use a thin paintbrush to clean out the corners and nooks and crannies of the pieces.
    4. Finish off by thoroughly rinsing each cookie cutter under running water.
    5. To dry your cookie cutters quickly so that they can be stored without the worry mould/mildew forming on them, line them up on a stainless steel baking sheet, and place them in the oven. Heat for 1-2 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 
    6. Remove the baking sheet, allow the cookie cutters to cool down, and then store them.

How to Clean Pastry Brushes

If you’re more of an advanced baker, you’ve probably got a wide range of pastry brushes, perhaps, made from different types of materials/fibres, as well. While they are very useful tools in baking, they also accumulate a lot of oils that don’t wash off very easily. Therefore, when it comes to cleaning your pastry brushes, you need to be a little patient and use the right cleaning techniques.

Take a look at this tried and tested cleaning method for  nylon and silicone pastry brushes:

    1. In a large bowl or basin, make a hot, soapy solution, and soak the pastry brushes in it until the water begins to cool down. This will help melt off some of the oil/butter/grease.
    2. Discard the water, wash out the bowl, and refill it with a fresh (hot) soapy solution. Soak the brushes in this manner a few times, until you find that the bristles are less greasy.
    3. If needed, add a few drops of dishwashing liquid to the bristles, and gently massage the detergent into the brush.
    4. Rinse the brush under running water to remove traces of the soap. A good way to test whether the dishwashing liquid has been removed is by swishing the brush around in a bowl of water, and then checking for bubbles or observing if the water has become soapy.
    5. Once the pastry brushes have been cleaned, shake off excess water, and dab them on a clean, dry towel. Leave them in a sleeping position on a towel to dry completely before storing.

How to Clean a Baking Stone

If you like homemade pizza, you’re going to need a baking stone; and if you want to keep making yummy pizzas, you need to learn how to clean your baking stone! The good news is that it’s a lot simpler than you may be imagining (even when dealing with stuck-on grease and pizza bits).

Check out this easy step-by-step guide to cleaning a baking stone:

    1. Knock off any loose food bits with a quick wipe down using a paper towel.
    2. Pour warm water over the stone, and allow it to dampen the surface for a minute or so.
    3. Next, take a bench scraper and gently scrape off hardened debris (which should be damp and loosened by now).
    4. Coat the stone with a paste of baking soda and water, and allow it to stand for at least 15 minutes. This will help get rid of the grease and grime.
    5. Scrape off the paste with a clean bench scraper.
    6. Rinse the surface thoroughly (preferably with warm water).
    7. Wipe the baking stone with a towel, and store it when completely dry.

How to Clean a Nonstick Muffin Pan

It may be contradictory but if you’ve ever baked in a nonstick muffin pan, you’ll know that sticking is inevitable! With that said, it is very much easier to clean a nonstick muffin tray as opposed to stainless steel or aluminium pans.

Here’s what you need to do to clean a messy nonstick muffin pan:

    1. In 1 litre of water, dissolve 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Fill up 3/4th of the muffin pan with this solution.
    2. Put the muffin tray into a preheated oven (350 degrees Fahrenheit), and bake for 15-20 minutes.
    3. Remove the pan and allow it to cool down. 
    4. Once cool, discard the baking soda solution, and clean the entire muffin pan with a sponge and liquid dish soap. If needed, use a bench scraper to remove stubborn grease from the top of the tray.
    5. When you’ve finished scrubbing the pan, rinse it thoroughly under running water.
    6. Wipe dry with a clean towel and then store.

Without properly maintained baking tools, your baking efforts will go in vain, or worse, taste pretty off! Not to mention the inconvenience and added cost of having to replace uncared for baking essentials every now and then. Luckily, with the cleaning techniques and tried and tested cleaning guides above, you can keep your baking tools in tiptop condition, and continue to enjoy some amazing, homemade baked goodies!

Karen Saunders

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