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Sw@p guides

Here’s a great tip for making a heart-shaped cake for someone you love from one square cake and one round one.

Bake one square cake and one round cake the same size.  They’ll be the same size if the diameter of the round cake is equal to the length of one of the sides of the square cake.

Cut the round cake in half and position the two halves along the sides of your square cake like we have in the picture.  Cover with icing using some to glue the pieces together for that perfect heart.

Happy BakeSw@pping!

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You can line a cake tin in about a minute to prevent your cakes from sticking to the tin (and make clean up easier!) Plus it gives you nice smooth sides and base for your cake - perfect if you plan to serve them naked!

Take a large rectangle piece of baking paper and fold into quarters. Then fold the quarter over about 2cm at a time until you get a triangular arrow style shape. Trim to the size of your tin by placing it into the tin with the point at the centre and fold where it reaches the side. Cut across the fold. Unfold and place into the base of your tin.

Take the piece you trimmed and cut the ragged edge off. Trim to two rectanges and unfold. This will line the sides of the tin.

Check out this and other videos at youtube.com/c/BakeSwap

Happy BakeSw@pping!
You can line the bases of a 12-hole friand tin in under a minute to prevent your cakes from sticking to the tin (and make clean up easier!)

Take a large rectangle piece of baking paper and fold in half horizontally and then again until you have a long thin strip. Fold this vertically into thirds.

Turn the tin over and roughly trace the bottom of one of the loaf inserts. Then cut around this.

You'll end up with heaps of oval pieces of baking paper perfect for popping into the bases of your friand tin holes.

Check out this and other videos at YouTube.com/c/BakeSw@p

Happy BakeSw@pping!


You can line the bases of an 8-hole mini loaf tin in under a minute to prevent your cakes from sticking to the tin (and make clean up easier!)

Take a large rectangle piece of baking paper and fold in half horizontally and then again until you have a long thin strip. Fold this vertically into thirds.

Turn the tin over and roughly trace the bottom of one of the loaf inserts. Then cut around this.

You'll end up with heaps of rectangular pieces of baking paper perfect for popping into the bases of your mini loaf tin holes.

Check out this and other videos at YouTube.com/c/BakeSwap

Happy BakeSw@pping!
A brilliant baker I know recently admitted she had never frozen baked goods.  And she’s not alone. But did you know that most baked goods freeze really well?  Which is terrific for keeping things fresh until you need them. And it’s a terrific time saver being able to bake ahead of your special occasion or prior to the hustle and bustle of a school week.  Freezing can even enhance your baked goods if they are treated correctly. For example, some baked items are actually moister after being frozen.


Tips for freezing baked items


Sounds so simple I know but here are some tips that have worked for me to ensure I have a bounty of delicious items at the ready in my freezer.

What can you freeze?
Depending on their ingredients almost any kind of baked item can be frozen including cakes, muffins, scones, quiches, pies, pikelets / drop scones, brownies, bread, scrolls, pastries, patties. Uncooked pastry and biscuit/cookie dough freezes well too. As do uncooked patties.

A few things that don’t really freeze so well include muesli bars, biscuits and some slices or tray bakes depending on their ingredients. But these items usually keep well for quite a few days in an airtight container to give you plenty of time to enjoy them at their best.

Pack your treats up as soon as possible after baking
The best time to pack them up is when they are completely cool and as soon as possible after baking.  Squeeze out the air from the bag when sealing.  A quick and easy thing to do is bag them in two’s using snap lock sandwich bags.  Label them with the item name, date baked and your initials. Write on the bags before you fill them…

Getting them freezer ready
  • For individual items like cakes and muffins freeze them wrapped individually in two layers of plastic wrap or in a zip lock back with all the air squeezed out.
  • For larger items like cakes wrap them in plastic wrap first and then tightly wrap them in aluminium foil.

Be careful not to squash them in the freezer
Be careful not to squash things when putting them fresh into the freezer.  Once they are frozen you don't have to worry so much but it's usually a good idea to arrange them in a container in your freezer, or on a shelf alone until they are frozen solid. Before you pop them into the freezer wrap them individually in cling film and then put them in a freezer bag with the air squeezed out.  This is so they don't get icy. Also make sure they’re labeled with what they are and the date.

Put things in your freezer naked
Most things freeze better without icing.  If you want to add icing do this after you defrost it ahead of serving.

The golden rule of freezing
Don’t re-freeze something that’s been frozen once and then defrosted.  This is a good rule of thumb to apply to ANY item you freeze.  And ideally you should consume your frozen treats within about 6-12 weeks – again depending on the ingredients.


Defrosting and serving your baked treats

To serve an item that has been frozen try one of these three things.
  1. Put the frozen item directly into a school lunchbox, for example, and let it defrost in there during the time between leaving home and eating it at morning recess. This has the added benefit of keeping the lunchbox cool.
  2. Let the item defrost on the kitchen bench (in its airtight bag) while you make up the rest of the lunchbox before adding it at the end.
  3. Defrost it in the microwave.  Remove it from any plastic wrapping - you can reuse this at the end (or leave it naked, depending on your lunchbox hardware). A good rule of thumb is to zap it in 10-second bursts turning the item over between each.  20-seconds in total is usually enough.

So try freezing so you can enjoy your baked goods whenever you want as delicious as the day they were baked.


Happy BakeSw@pping!


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I’ve always fantasised about measuring up all my ingredients in pretty little bowls, and arranging them in an orderly fashion across the front of my bench when I cook. Just like they do on the cooking shows I love to watch. The reality is much less formal and a lot less artistic…  But I have come to realise how important it is to measure your ingredients precisely when baking.  Because my cup might be different to your cup and your cup might be different to your favourite cookbook author’s cup.

All the BakeSw@p recipes use a consistent set of measurements to keep things simple and help you enjoy the fruits of your labour every time you bake by increasing the chances of things turning out the way they should!  It’s pretty simple stuff really – I’ve just found that having a simple table with all the measures in one place that’s easy to refer to has made my life much simpler.  So I’ve included it for you here on the BakeSw@p site at BAKE > BakeSw@p basic ingredient measures.


Some DO’s (they should be called the "BEFORE'S")

  • Measure each ingredient separately BEFORE you add it to your mixture.  Don’t measure ingredients directly into a mixture – if you make a mistake, get distracted or your scales inexplicably go off - it’s hard to fix it
  • Use electronic scales to measure your ingredients for accuracy
  • Measure everything BEFORE you start – this makes the baking process super efficient but, most importantly, it’s far better to find out you have run out of something or don’t quite have enough left for your recipe before you get too far in


Happy BakeSw@pping!



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A friend shared this fantastic trick with me recently.  It sounds so simple, I know, but I’ve been making fairy bread for birthday parties for YEARS and it’s always ended up the same way.  I butter the bread and sprinkle on the hundreds and thousands.  I use double the sprinkles I actually need, most of which end up on the floor and rolling into every nook and cranny in the kitchen.  So you end up crunching around the kitchen floor with hundreds and thousands of colourful miniature ball bearings all over it.  And I find sprinkles on my sponge every time I wipe the kitchen bench for weeks. 

It doesn’t deter me from making this kids party favourite but I love the new mess free method. There are six easy steps to make sure the sprinkles end up only on the delicious fairy bread and not on the floor or all over the kitchen.

Six easy steps to mess-free fairy bread


  1. Slice the crusts off a loaf of fresh white bread. Do a few pieces at a time and use a serrated bread knife to get a clean cut without squashing the bread. Alternatively, cut the bread into shapes with cookie cutters.
  2. Butter the bread
  3. Slice the bread into triangles I prefer halves but you can do quarters if you like. (Don’t do this if you cut shapes at step 1…)
  4. Tip the hundreds and thousands into a shallow plastic container approximately 30cm x 20cm or thereabouts. About 0.5cm of sprinkles.
  5. Press a couple of pieces of bread at a time into the sprinkles, butter side down.  Press gently to get a good coverage but not too hard or the butter transfers to the container.
  6. Shake the container from side-to-side between pressings to evenly disperse the sprinkles. Replenish them when you need to.

Enjoy the fairy bread without the mess!


Happy BakeSw@pping!

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When making double quantities or larger batches of mixture it can be tricky to divide it into equal portions for cooking.  Sometimes it makes sense to make part of the larger batch all-in-one - like creaming the butter and sugar then adding eggs, for example.  And then you need to split it to finish the recipe because when you add everything else there’s too much mix for one bowl. And it makes it easier to handle. Or you want to make sure you get exactly the same amount of mixture into each tin for baking.

Sounds simple but many a time I’ve gotten my mixes out of whack.

So here are six simple steps to getting it right every time:

  1. Weigh each bowl or tin empty. Don’t assume the same size bowls or tins are equal in weight.
  2. Weigh the bowl containing the mixture before you portion it.
  3. Subtract the weight of that bowl from the total – this gives you the weight of the mixture alone
  4. Divide the mixture weight by the number of vessels you plan to portion it into
  5. Add this number to the weight of each vessel to get the target end weight per vessel
  6. Portion the mixture into each vessel until you get to the target end weight for each.

My biggest tip - write it down as you go!

Here’s an example of portioning a mix two ways and then one three ways.

EXAMPLE ONE: One bowl into two bowls



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EXAMPLE TWO: One bowl into three tins


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Please note in the examples above:
  • Bowl #1 and Bowl #2 are identical
  • Tins #1 and #2 are the same size but different brands so their weight varies



Happy BakeSw@pping!


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