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~ A Bakeware Essential: The Springform Pan ~

PICT2731Yesterday,  I received an excellent e-mail from a reader regarding my recipe for ~ "Come for Coffee and Cake."  Coffeecake:  Cinnamon-Orange, Chocolate-Chip, Pecan Streusel ~ (recipe found in Categories 6 & 9).  It was regarding the use of a springform pan.  Normally, I would save a comment like this for my Friday ~ Culinary Q&A & Kitchen Therapy Too ~. As I pondered my answer, I realized it was getting long and detailed enough to turn it into a post, so, I decided to take some time today to give the springform pan the press it rightfully deserves!

PICT2739Q.  Jennifer asks:  I just read your recipe for the chocolate-chip coffee cake and I can't wait to try it.  I know my husband is going to love it.  I don't have a springform pan, but I do have a 9"-round, cake pan.  Can I bake the cake in this pan instead? I am willing to buy a springform pan, if you tell me I should, and, I'd really appreciate any advice or recommendations you will share!

PICT2734A.  Kitchen Encounters:  In  the case of almost any coffeecake, you do not need a springform pan. It can be baked in a metal baking pan or glass baking dish, because, it is a type of cake that can be cut and served directly from the pan or dish. I am sorry to report that your 9" round cake pan will not work.  Why? It will not be big/high enough to accommodate the coffeecake as it rises during the baking process.  If you want to use a metal pan or a glass dish to bake my coffeecake, use a 13" x 9" x 2" rectangular one!

PICT2731A bit about the springform pan!

PICT2736If you like to bake, I highly-recommend you invest in one of these pans.  The most common size is 9"-round (pictured above), but they are available mini-sized, in graduated sets, along with square- and heart-shaped ones too!  

The price ($15.00-$50.00) is pretty much determined by what material it is made of: anodized aluminum, heavy-guage steel, regular or nonstick  surfaces, and, features like glass bottoms and/or waterproof seals around the base.

PICT2733Springform pans (no matter what shape), have high, straight sides (2 1/2"-3") that expand with the aid of a spring-loaded latch or clamp.  The separate bottom, can be removed when the latch is released.  This allows for cakes, coffeecakes, tortes or cheesecakes, which would be difficult or impossible to remove from an ordinary pan, to be easily extricated and served by removing the pan's sides (allowing the cake to remain on the base of the pan). This springform pan is made by Anolon and costs about $20.00!

6a0120a8551282970b014e894e677c970d-800wiWhile I love the waterproof option, over time, the latch tends to loosen, which allows small breaks in the seal.  So, when baking a delicate cheesecake in a water bath, always wrap the bottom of the pan in aluminum foil to avoid any potential leaks.  To read my recipe for ~ Philly's "Frog" Lemon Cheesecake ~, just click into Categories 6 or 17!

"We are all in the food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipes, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2012) 


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