When I bake brownies or bar cookies, I frequently line the baking dish with lightly greased aluminum foil. It saves me time on cleanup, and it is very easy to simply lift the whole batch out of the pan when I’m ready to slice it. But when I bake cakes, I prefer to use parchment paper because I need to remove the cake from the pan while it is still hot and a circle of parchment paper will slide off very easily when a cake is turned out. Lifting a hot – and therefore delicate – cake out of the pan with foil, which could tear, is not a great idea (you can guess how I might know this).
It’s easy to line a round pan with parchment paper. All you need is a pair of scissors. I’ve taken pictures of the process step-by-step.
First, get out your pan and turn it upside down. Next, take a large piece of parchment – large enough to cover the bottom of the pan – and fold it in half. Once it’s folded, continue to fold it into quarters, then eighths.
Once the paper has been folded, put the point of the parchment into the center point of the cake pan. Take a pair of scissors and cut a straight line through the parchment, just inside the outer edge of the pan.
Finally, unfold the parchment and fit it inside the cake pan. If it doesn’t quite fit, you can fold it back up and trim off any too-long corners. The circle should not run up the sides of the cake pan. Once it fits the base, you’re ready to grease the pan and start baking.