The directions for making cakes often instruct you to alternate adding the dry ingredients with the liquid. How many times should you alternate for the best outcome? Thanks! —M.S., Puyallup, Washington
Adding dry and wet ingredients alternately to cake batter helps to keep gluten from forming. Gluten can cause the cake's texture to become tough. Begin by adding a third of the flour mixture and mixing until the batter is smooth. Then add half of the liquid, gently mixing until combined. Continue adding ingredients alternately, mixing just until combined. Excessive beating will also toughen cakes.