I finally got it through my thick skull that my oven has been running too hot. After burning one too many breads and cakes ("Just trim the edges; it’ll be fine") it finally dawned on me: "I bet the thermostat is out of whack."
From what I’ve read, this is a pretty common problem. Since my oven thermometer recently broke (well, OK -- a year ago), I reduced the heat by 15-degrees and baked a Pumpkin Pecan Quick Bread mix I had lying around (from William Sonoma) to test things out.
The bread baked up beautifully. Yay! Problem solved.
Later, I found this article on oven temperature calibration and adjusted my oven. I think it worked but time will tell. I’ll keep you posted.
Tags: baking, cooking, oven, temperature, thermometer