May is here, and summer decided to tag along: gorgeous blue skies, bright sunshine, and paradise-like heat is among us. After a snowy and gray winter, this weather brightens anyone's mood.
The only downfall of sunny skies? It can cause a problem for your delicious sweet treats. Baking in a warm environment can cause buttercream to break, butter to soften too much, and cream fillings to go bad.
Here are three helpful hints on storing your treats during your summer season:
1) Refrigerate ANYTHING made with: cream cheese, cream/pastry cream filling, or whipped cream. Since dairy grows unwanted bacteria in a warm and hot environment, it is best to keep anything dairy made in the refrigerator. Your sweet treats will stay cold, and bacteria will not grow.
2) Store in an air-tight container in the pantry: Air tight containers help so air does not come in and dry your baked good out. Always, ALWAYS, store in the pantry, outside of the direct sunshine.
3) In warm weather, refrigerate cakes/cupcakes made with buttercream: In the cold winter months, a cupcake made with buttercream will not melt, if it's left at room temperature. In the summer time, yes it will. Since my buttercream does not contain any "weird" preservatives or chemicals, heat and sunlight will "melt" it. The downfall of refrigeration: it will cause cakes to somewhat dry out. Cake is meant to be consumed at room temperature. If you have cupcakes, or cake, made with buttercream and it is for a special event, you can pull the cupcake out of the refrigerator one hour prior and it will bring the sweet treat to room temperature.
When in doubt, you can always store goodies in the refrigerator, and it will not hurt. If you do decide to leave your baked goods at room temperature, after three days they will start to loose quality. So, eat 'em fast!
Happy Baking! -Kimm