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Ruby’s Top 5 Budget Baking Tips

Feeling the pinch? Baking doesn’t need to break the bank. Ruby reveals her thrifty tips on how to “bake for taste”…

1. Don’t waste money on special equipment

There’s no need fancy electricals. On top of the kitchen basics, all you should need is a spatula, a whisk, a good baking tray, a couple of cake tins and baking parchment. An electric whisk is far cheaper than a stand-alone mixer.

2. Decorate your bakes using the ingredients that went into them

You could candy some orange peel for on top of an orange and polenta cake, or make truffles out of leftover ganache to decorate a sachertorte. There’s no need to waste money on sugar decorations and icings.

3. Invest in good ingredients

A pot of good quality vanilla bean paste will last for ages and taste incredible, a bottle of 99p vanilla essence usually lasts five minutes and tastes nasty. You can cut corners with some ingredients, but always invest in fresh fruit, vanilla extract, and butter.

4. Bake… BREAD!

Flour, yeast, salt and water are all you need. It is cheap, it is unfussy, it is therapeutic, it is low maintenance and it is endlessly versatile.

5. Bake for taste and not for show

Buy what’s in season and let that ingredient shine – it is cheaper and tastes better. An apple and blackberry crumble made from foraged blackberries and an armful of cox apples – THAT is what a showstopper tastes like.