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Digital Scales Offer Cooks Many Benefits

Debra Day

More and more cooks are discovering the benefits of using digital kitchen scales to measure ingredients when they are cooking or baking. The advantages of using digital scales include greater accuracy in measurement, faster preparation time, and more consistent results.

Cooks who are accustomed to using volume measurements may not realize why they get disappointing and inconsistent results no matter how carefully they measure the ingredients. Volume measurements can vary quite a bit from one time to the next, depending on several factors. The amount of flour in a level measuring cup can vary depending on whether it was scooped from the bottom of the container, or carefully placed in the cup, one spoonful at a time. A cup of flour that has recently been sifted won't contain the same amount of flour as a cup that hasn't been. A cup of finely chopped vegetables that are tightly packed will be much heavier than a loosely packed cup of coarsely chopped vegetables.

Cooks and bakers who want consistent results will get them when they switch to weighing their ingredients instead of measuring by volume. Using a digital kitchen scale is the best way to get a quick, accurate measurement of weight. Digital scales with an instantaneous readout can tell you exactly when you have poured the correct amount of a particular ingredient. Some scales have advanced features that allow a dieter to measure food portions accurately and can enable a diabetic to accurately monitor the daily intake of carbohydrates.

When you purchase a digital scale, look for one that can switch from using imperial measurements to metric measurements to accommodate the recipe you are using. The display should be large and clear, without being obstructed by the bowl.

It can take some time to learn how to convert cookbook recipes or a treasured family recipe from volume-based measurements to one that uses weighed ingredients. However, once you have found a way to convert accurately, it will become second nature.

Many digital kitchen scales have a feature that allows the scale to take into account the weight of the measuring bowl so the same bowl can be reused to measure all ingredients accurately. This means less cleanup time is required in the kitchen. Cooks who need to prepare large meals may find that they need to use a digital scale that measures over ten pounds.

Cooks who prefer to rely on instinct, using the "pinch of this and a pinch of that" method, may worry that digital scales are too precise for their liking and might interfere with their creativity. However, once they become used to this method of measuring ingredients, they will be won over by the fact that they can count on getting perfect results every time.

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