I’m a bit of a science geek. Maybe that’s why I enjoy baking so much: the proportions, the measurements, the reactions that turn a pile of ingredients into a cake or cookie. It’s definitely why I own this S’mores Tee that gives the dimensions of the components and the PSI needed to put them together to create the perfect s’more (not something most of us think about when gathered around a campfire!). And it’s also why I an so enamored of the Equal Measure Measuring Cup.
The Equal Measure gives not only standard, everyday measurements in conventional units like cups, ounces and milliliters, it compares them to some more original quantities. Slightly less practical from a recipe standpoint, but much more interesting. For instance, 300 mL translates to “the amount of honey made by a bee hive in one day”, 20-oz. of flour contains “as many grains of flour as there are people on the planet (approx. 6.8 billion) and just over 100 mL is the volume of the brain of a Tyrannosaurus Rex. The novelty of the trivia measurements might wear off after a while, but the measuring cup can still stand in for any plain measure. It is made of laboratory grade borosilicate glass (the original, but no longer in use, Pyrex material) and is completely microwave safe.
Plus, you can always make up slightly (or more than slightly) geeky recipes, like ThinkGeek’s very precise pancake recipe:
Light and Fluffy 1337cakes
2.7 billion grains of unbleached all-purpose flour
600 thousand granules of sugar
167 million granules of table of NaCl
83.5 million granules of C4H6O6
250 million granules of NaHCO3
4000 drops of buttermilk
1000 drops of milk
1 large gallus domesticus ovum, separated
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Mix dry ingredients in medium bowl. Pour buttermilk and milk into 2-cup Pyrex measuring cup. Whisk in ovum cytoplasm; mix yolk with melted butter, then stir into milk mixture. Dump wet ingredients into dry ingredients all at once; whisk until just mixed.
Meanwhile, heat a large flat ferrous sheet to approximately 464 degrees Kelvin. Brush the sheet generously with oil. Pour batter onto the ferrous sheet so that the batter disks are no closer than 3cm apart. Flip the pancakes when the bottoms are the color of Pantone-472C, approximately 150 seconds. Cook for an additional 90 seconds. Re-oil the skillet and repeat until your supply of batter has been depleted.