Tin, if well cared for (page 237), is the metal best adapted for cake-making. It does not scorch, heats quickly to the point at which the leavening agent in the cake becomes effective, and responds rapidly to necessary regulation of temperature during baking. The round tin with a tube in the center, known as an angel-cake tin, produces the most level and evenly baked cake, owing to the heat reaching the center of the cake as soon as any other part, and the "pull" between metal and batter being more even at every point than in tins of other construction. A plain round tin, not too deep, gives the next best result; a square tin is next, while an oblong tin requires very careful regulation of heat in order to produce a well-baked cake.
The choice of utensils for bread baking lies between tin and russia iron (a sheet iron treated by a process that originated in Russia, having a polished blue-black surface). Since bread requires a hotter oven than does cake, the russia iron pan should have first choice; it absorbs more heat than does tin, is less affected by high temperature, and is more durable.
Experiments have shown that in baking the lower crust of juicy pies, the best results are obtained by the use of granite-ware plates, that old tin plates are next in order, while perforated and wire plates come third.
Cookies are best baked on russia iron sheets cut to fit the oven, with heavy tin sheets as second choice. The sheets are kept in better condition and produce more delicate results if, instead of being greased with butter or lard, they are warmed and rubbed very lightly with paraffin. If kept scrupulously clean, they require no greasing.