Hello, I have always been confused with what kind of baking tin to use for cakes, pastries and breads. Does it make any difference whether you use non stick, silicone, or aluminium ones? if so please can you put me on the right track so I know in future. I was wondering if say a dark non stick baking tray would make my pastry darker on the bottom rather than a light aluminium one? I look forward to hearing from you. Many thanks Judy
If you are just starting to bake then a 12-cup muffin tin, a 2-pound loaf tin, a baking sheet with a small lip, a pair of 20cm (8-inch) sandwich tins (cake pans) and a 23cm (9-inch) springform pan will cover many recipes. Generally we would prefer metal tins to silicone ones. For the baking sheet we suggest that you buy a good quality one that is fairly solid as thin, light versions tend to warp when they heat up in the oven.
Dark metal and non-stick tins will tend to brown baked goods more quickly so you may find that you need to shorten baking times. Non-stick tins are not essential as you can buy paper liners for muffin tins and loaf tins and if you grease cake tins thoroughtly and line the base with circles of baking parchment (parchment paper) then cakes should turn out easily. And it is always best to buy as good quality as your budget will allow. Nigella has more detailed thoughts and preferences on cookware and baking equipment in her book Kitchen, in the Kitchen Caboodle and Kitchen Confidential sections.