Logan Smith Capstone

Baking has alway been a passion of mine. Though I bake all the time there are many avenues of baking I haven’t explored. For my Capstone I am creating a Bakery Blog called Mad Batter. To create my blog I will be using wix.com. With this blog I will be baking different desserts and writing about my progress or faults as a baker, the difficulties of the dessert, and how much my friends/family liked it. I was also able to learn more about baking in general and will be sharing my opinions on the perfect desserts. As a senior I am trying to determine a career to choose, since baking is a prominent part of my life I would like to explore this passion and maybe be able to determine if this is a career I want for the rest of my life. Since I will be baking I had a chief as my mentor, her name is Kimberly White. She has recently graduated from a culinary school and has baking training so it was great to learn some of her skills. Even though this project was for a my capstone I had so much fun cooking and experimenting with different recipes.

Website Link: 


  1. Doucleff, Michaeleen. “Cookie-Baking Chemistry: How To Engineer Your Perfect Sweet Treat.” NPR, NPR, 3 Dec. 2013,


This source provides information about the chemistry of cookie baking. While baking is an art it is also a science, filled with chemical reactions. By playing with ingredients in any recipe it’s chemical reactions can be tweaked to make the perfect cookie. The website first considers the three major steps to baking cookies;the spread, the rise, and the color/flavor injection. During the spread the cookie loses its structural integrity causing the cookie to lose its ball shape and spread. What causes the cookie to rise is the water in the dough, as the cookie starts to rise the vapor pushes through the dough.  Soon the baking soda and powder start to break down causing the cookie to rise further. Lastly the color and flavor is cause by caramelizing, the sugar in the cookie breaks down turning into fragrant brown liquid giving the cookie it’s taste and smell. The second process that cause flavor and color is called the Maillard reactions darkens the cookie and gives the cookie it’s nutty flavor. One small change in the cookie could change the cookie. For example if the butter is melted the dough will be wetter and spread farther.

  1. Dispatch, Charlie Boss The Columbus. “Cakes & Chemistry: the Science of Baking.” The Columbus Dispatch, The Columbus Dispatch, 24 Nov. 2013,


Food is very complicated, because it includes basic science. Each ingredient has a job, that make a cake edible but also stable. For example flour provides the structure and baking soda gives the cake it’s airness. All of the dry ingredients have to be mixed in the right order because they are all competing for water, if mixed wrong it could make your cake clumpy. This sources is useful to me because it emphasize how important it is to follow a recipe. If I put my ingredients in the wrong order then I could ruin the pastries I am making .

  1. Erdos, Joseph. “Butter vs. Margarine: Which Is Better For You (And For Baking)?” The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, 20 May 2012, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/20/butter-vs-margarine_n_1363458.html

This sources explains the Differences between butter and margarine and which one is better to use in baking. Butter is better for baking because it contains a high fat content which gives the best result of flakiness and tenderness. On the other hand butter has high cholesterol and saturated fat. Margarine is good for cooking but is bad for baking. Though margarine isn’t good for baking it is healthier. Margarine has zero trans fat, low saturated fat and zero cholesterol. This website is usual full to me because when it comes to baking I want to make my pastries healthy but also taste. By knowing the difference between butter and margarine I now know what effect each has on my pastries.

  1. Severson , Kim. “Red Velvet Cake: A Classic, Not a Gimmick.” The New York Times , The New York Times Company , 12 May 2014, https://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/14/dining/red-velvet-cake-from-gimmick-to-american-classic.html?_r=0

Red Velvet has taken the world by storm. The cocoa cake with the red undertone is the base of items from lattes to candles. By the 1930 the recipes for red velvet cake were showing up in the West Coast and Mideast. It is most likely that this cake started with the elites. Meanwhile in Austin, Texas John A. Adams was selling vanilla cake and red dye thus making a lot of money.  Many companies used this tactic to trick the people into thinking they had red velvet cake, making red velvet very popular during World War II. Armed with dye and recipes cooks fanned out  to promote their product. From there the cake soon became a top seller.

  1. Duszynski, Elizabeth. “Candace Nelson of Sprinkles Cupcakes.” The Everygirl, The Everygirl LLC, http://theeverygirl.com/feature/candace-nelson-of-sprinkles-cupcakes

This source is an interview of Candace Nelson, not only does she own her bakery, Sprinkles Cupcakes, she is also a judge on the show Cupcake Wars. Throughout the interview Candace explains what affected her decision to go into the cupcake business and how she learned to run a business.  The interview also includes the difficulties of finding the perfect spot for her business and how difficult it was own a business at such a young age. Considering that I want to review all the aspects of baking/owning a bakery it is helpful for me to know the complications that come with owning a bakery. This interview is also tells me that it is possible to own a bakery at a young age and be successful.

  1. Chen, Susannah. “Are Sorbet, Sherbet, and Sherbert the Same Thing?” POPSUGAR Food, 31 May 2014, http://www.popsugar.com/food/Difference-Between-Sorbet-Sherbet-Sherbert-7216977

Though sorbet, sherbet and sherbert seem to sound the same they are slightly different. Sorbet is generally a fruit-based frozen treat. Sorbet doesn’t contain any milk or dairy product. Sherbet is similar to sorbet in the fact that it is fruit based, the only difference is that sherbet contains less than 3% of milk. If sherbet contain more milk than 3% it would be consider ice cream. Lastly in other parts of the world sherbert is a fizzy powder stirred into drinks. It is useful that I know the difference between these frozen treats because they are often confused for each other. By knowing the difference I am improving my knowledge of all treats.

  1. Sever, Shauna, and Leigh Beisch. Real Sweet: More than 80 Crave-Worthy Treats Made with Natural Sugars. New York, William Morrow, 2015.

Though a sweet should never be healthy this source has provided multiple ways to make a treat both sweet and a little healthier. The book gives a detailed list of real sugars that can easily swap out the fake sugar with. Considering that 80% of the world white sugar is processed until it is unrecognizable. The book also goes into detail about the health benefits of grains and starches., natural add ins to give the sweet flavor and the  tools needed to make your sweets,  Just like any bakery I need a recipe book. This sources clearly explains the recipes and step by step instructions to insure that my sweet is the best.

  1. Doutre-Roussel, Chloé. The Chocolate Connoisseur: for Everyone with a Passion for Chocolate. New York, Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, 2006.

This source provide a brief history of chocolate. In 1000 BC cocoa trees were growing in the  Amazon. From 600-1500 AD the Mayans and Aztecs used this cocoa to make a spicy drink. Slowly the recipes for this delicious treat spread over Europe then soon reached England. By 1765 chocolate arrived in America and the first chocolate factory opens in Dorchester, Massachusetts.  The love of chocolate soon spread all across America. By 2004 about 600,00 cocoa beans are eaten per year and only 5% are used in chocolate bars. I think this sources is useful because it is teaching me the history of a main ingredient in the cooking considering most pastries are surrounded by chocolate.

  1. Klopfer , Brady. “8 Tricks That Make Boxed Cake Mix Taste Like Homemade.”WonderHowTo, WonderHowTo, Inc, 8 Oct. 2015,https://food-hacks.wonderhowto.com/how-to/8-tricks-make-boxed-cake-mix-taste-like-homemade-0162021/

Boxes cakes always get mixed reactions, some people sing their praises while other berate them. In either case a box cake can always be improved.  This website list eight tricks to improve a box cake. For example milk can be substituted for water to make your cake taste instantly homemade. Or add mayo to improve the texture of the cake. There are going to be times when I don’t want to make a cake from scratch so by using these tricks I will be able to have the taste of a homemade cake but the easiness of a cake from the box. I can also share these tricks with family and friends to help them improve their cakes.

  1. Kohnke, Luane, and Stacey Cramp. Gluten-Free Cookies: from Shortbreads to Snickerdoodles, Brownies to Biscotti: 50 Recipes for Cookies You Crave. South Portland, Me., Sellers Pub., 2011.

One thing that makes a cookie is gluten without gluten baked goods could become rubbery or to crumbly. On the other hand some people can’t have gluten because it makes them sick, thus gluten-free sweets were born. The Gluten Free Cookie book explains what is gluten free and can be included in a cookie such as nuts, fruits, eggs, and salt. Most of these things people already have in their refrigerator. It is also to useful to know because it also breaks down exactly what I would need to change to adjust my sweet treats. This sources is helpful to know because if I were to own a bakery I could serve those that can’t have gluten.