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Printing and Assembling the Templates
Each of the templates were designed to be printed out on standard letter sized (8.5" x 11") pieces of paper. When printing the templates, make sure you do not change the scale during printing. The templates should be printed out in actual size. You can double check the printed size by measuring one of the template shapes to make sure it's to scale.
To use templates that are for half sheet pans, print out two copies of the template. Take one of the copies and fold or cut along the dotted line. Rotate one of the copies 180 degrees so that it's upside down. Place the two copies together by aligning the triangles on the sheets and tape the pieces together (the sheet with the cut or folded portion will go on top of the other sheet).
To use templates that are for quarter sheet pans, print out one copy of the template, then fold or cut along the dotted line.
That's it! Easy as pie! Now you're ready to use the baking templates.
Using the Templates
There are a number of ways you can use these templates, but we'll describe the most common methods. Using a particular method is a matter of preference that may depend on what you're making and the quantity you plan to make. Let's start with the easiest method and work our way down.
Method 1: Paper Template
The first method is the Paper Template Method. To use this method, place the paper template on top of the baking pan and then place a piece of parchment paper on top of the paper template. Because parchment paper is semi-transparent, a dark template outline placed underneath will show very well, so you can use the template outlines to place your batter or dough on top of the parchment paper. After you're done, simply remove the paper template from underneath the piece of parchment paper. This method works well with batters that allow you to pull the template out from underneath.
Tip: Apply some tape to the edge of the paper template to make it easier to pull out the template. Since standard printer paper was not designed to be baked with your goodies, always remember to remove the paper template before baking!
Method 2: Parchment Paper Template
The second method is the Parchment Paper Template Method. This method is similar to the Paper Template method, except that the template is made using parchment paper, which means you can leave the template in as part of the baking process. To use this method, trace the outlines of the paper template onto a piece of parchment paper. You can then place the parchment paper template on the pan with a regular sheet of parchment paper on top of it. This can be really useful if you prefer using silicon baking mats that have some level of transparency and do not want to draw on your baking mats. The down side of this method is that the paper may discolor, deform, get greasy, or degrade over time.
Method 3: Master Template
The third method is the Master Template Method. The master template is like the paper template, but with the shapes cut out. The purpose of this is so you can use the master template to trace out the holes on several sheets of parchment paper. The master template can be made of any type of material such as paper, cardboard, plastic, or metal. You can even use a simple cereal box or a file folder. The material will depend on what's available to you and how often you intend to use the template, since it may wear down after several uses.
To make the master template, first cut out the shapes on the paper template. Each of the templates has a fold line feature so that you can fold the paper over and cut out the shape more easily. If you're going to use a different material as the master template, such as cardboard, you can trace the outlines onto the new material and then cut out the shapes.
These are just a few of the methods for using the baking templates. You can probably get more creative, such as using different pans, or trying different arrangements. This is just a starting point so feel free to do what fits your needs. Now that you know how to print, assemble, and use the templates, let's explore our template choices!