I enjoy everything about making cake except for 2 things: cleaning up (can't do anything bout that) and measuring shortening. I have the wonder cups but it's still tedious to load them up and try to push out the air to get an accurate measurement. I'd like to convert the recipes I have to weights instead of volume measurements. Will this work? And how much exactly does a full cup of shortening weigh?
Think of it as how butter/margarine is packaged....one cube is 4 oz... 1/2 cup. So if you need 1 cup = 8 oz 2 cups = 16oz/ 1 pound....So depending on how much your recipe calls for, just do the math to figure out how much your recipe needs. I do this for most recipes...measure out all the ingredients and weigh them out and make the notation on the recipe for next time. So much easier to weigh than measure especially when you use a scale that you can zero out each time you add an ingredient directly into the mixing bowel!
The easiest way. Measure out 1 cup of shortening. Then dump it on a scale. Now you know how much it weighs. This is why cups, and all that are such a backward, inaccurate way of doing things.
I measured out a cup and weighted it. I got 6 7/8th ish ounces. Since in buttercream it doesn't hurt to be a little off I go ahead and weigh it at 7oz for each cup.
Thanks to all for your answers and suggestions. That Joe Pastry weight chart is going to be well used!
I use Sweetex and put 13 to 13.5 oz (2 cups) to 2 lbs powdered sugar. I found that the full 14 oz was too much Sweetex. With all Crisco i use the full 14 oz.
Made a batch of Sugarshack's icing today weighing the shortening. And it was sooo much easier than pushing 5 lbs. of shortening into measuring cups. Thanks again to everyone for their input. I am a happy (and more time efficient) camper.
I have a small kitchen scale I use.
ive already weighed 1 cup of shortening and i get 7oz just at. i use 20oz to 4lb of pwd sugar to make my icing (alpine or sweetex which ever i have at the time.)
I agree with the OP. It is worse since I got the wonder cup cause now I can see all the air gaps and worry about accuracy. So after the last time I made BC I said I would never measure shortening again, would only use a scale I already have. Except when I searched online for shortening weights I found a variety of weights for shortening and other ingredients, different charts had different weights for the same amount. So much for more precision. I will just have to pick a chart and go with it.
Except when I searched online for shortening weights I found a variety of weights for shortening and other ingredients, different charts had different weights for the same amount.
The charts give the average weight for shortening (all brands of shortening) and so on..
To get the precise weight for your shortening (or any other ingredient) by cup volume...
The easiest way. Measure out 1 cup of shortening. Then dump it on a scale. Now you know how much it weighs.
Then notate that info somewhere handy so you can refer back to it.
This is why I am so glad I'm a "until it looks right" cook and I can actually eyeball it now. I have a certain spoon that I scoop my crisco out with, and I know by looking at it how much is there. (But I remember the days of having to measure shortening and I didn't like it either.)
Daughter didn't believe me, that I could tell by looking. So I scooped out the crisco and told her, "This is 1-1/2 cups." We took that big scoop of crisco and measured it in measuring cups.
Whadda ya know! Mama scooped out exactly 1-1/2 cups!
You must be really tuned in to the "spatial" portion of your brain...
(I mean that as a compliment.)
My older aunts (farm wives) were also able to do all their baking by feel/sight.
(sigh) Boy do I miss them....
Jan, it took me a lifetime to get to that point and I'd never expect my 17 year old daughter, for example, to be able to do that. It's definitely a skill that comes with age and experience!
My kids pretty much forced me to measure out stuff so I could write it down for them. And thus was born our "Brim Family Cookbook"! What an experience that was!
I remember in my first Home Ec class, I mentioned that "my mom doesn't measure anything ... she jsut pours the salt in her hand and throws it in the pan!" and the Home Ec teacher said, "Yes she is ..... she's just done it so long that when she pours that salt in her hand, she's using her hand to measure the salt. She knows how big of a circle of salt she needs, compared to the size of her hand." That actually made an impact on me that not all measuring "cups" have lines drawn on the sides!
I wish I could just download the experience into my head so I didn't have to measure! But after a decade in healthcare foodservice management I can tell the temperature of food on a steam table by looking at it. My kitchen crew didn't believe me until I proved it one day with a thermometer. Somehow it's just not as cool as being able to produce an outstanding cake without measuring.