or Connect
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:


post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Although I've visited this forum many times, I haven't introduced myself. My name is Myra Govea de Arce and I am a middle school Spanish teacher with a passion for cake baking and decorating. I'm self-taught (through books and videos). From the start I would like to thank the culinary arts professionals helping neophytes like me :) .

Now for my concern, I am trying to figure out what happened with a recipe that I tried yesterday. I made 3 changes to the original recipe: I divided the yolks from the whites, whipping the whites with half of the sugar and then folding these into the batter at the end. It rose beautifully in the oven- and then it sank, resulting in a texture that resembled a half-baked cake with a compacted consistency toward the bottom half. Could someone analyze this recipe and suggest any change(s) if necessary? The recipe was downloaded as follows:

Lemon Butter Cake with Icing

5 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
4-1/2 cups sugar, plus 1/2 cup for sprinkling
6 large eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
finely grated zest of 4 lemons
juice of 1 lemon
2 cups sour cream

1. Preheat overn to 325 degrees. Butter and flour two 10-inch round cake pans.
2. Sift together dry ingredients.
3. In another bowl, cream butter with 4-1/2 cups sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
5. Stir in vanilla. Add lemon zest and juice.
6. Add dry ingredients to egg mixture, alternating with sour cream.
7. Scrape batter into prepared cake pans.
8. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup sugar on top of batter. Bake till set and a cake tester inserted in the center comes our clean. (about 1 hour).
9. Let cakes cool in their pans, then invert them onto a rack.

Thanks for the help. I'll be more brief in future messages :rolleyes: Myra.
post #2 of 6
If you add your sugar at the beginning of whipping your eggs they will not give structure to your cake. You need to add them at the end of whipping, this is called "Merinque"this procees will add structure to your batter.
Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
post #3 of 6
Hello Myra, and welcome to Chef Talk!

I will move your request to one of the baking forums. You will get more replies to add to our wonderful Cape Chef's response.

BTW, I'm also a middle school teacher (reading). They keep you on your toes, don't they?! :bounce:

Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
Moderator Emerita, Welcome Forum
***It is better to ask forgiveness than beg permission.***
post #4 of 6
Assuming you followed the proper merigue procedure, I'm surmise that the cake was disturbed in the baking process (i.e. poking the middle to make sure its done, cake was moved a number of times, etc). It sounds very much like your trying to make a souffle. Despite the horror stories, they're simple to make but very delicate.

Adding to Cape Chef's insight, your merigue should look like fluffy clouds. If you added in the sugar before foaming or added in too much sugar, you get melted marshmellows (really thick and goohy).
post #5 of 6
Dear Myra,
Welcome to the baking forums. I notice that you posted two threads on this topic, but I will reply to this one. In the future, it might be easier to stick to just one thread per topic. Anyway, I see a few things that could be causing your problem:

Did you test your cake before removing it from the oven? A timer is not always going to give an accurate measure of doneness. You must use a toothpick to make sure the middle is fully baked.

Are your ingredients all room temperature? If not, the butter will not be able to accept the other ingredients, causing a batter that looks curdled, and a cake that has no strength.

The recipe could stand to have another teaspoon or two of baking powder. It is very similar to a recipe that I use often, and while a tablespoon of BP may seem like a lot, it's really not. Your cake may just be too heavy for the 2 teaspoons of powder to support.

On that note, make sure that your BP is not too old. It does lose its leavening power over time.

I second the advice that CC gave regarding your meringue. Don't add your sugar to it until you have fairly strong (but not dry) peaks. Add your sugar gradually to the whites, and beat them for a few minutes afterwards, in order to dissolve the sugar.

Good luck! I look forward to your next installment.
post #6 of 6
People, she's creaming the butter and sugar. She's not making a sponge.

In any case Myra, a few things may have gone wrong.

5 cups of flour seems a lot. If you were making a pound cake it would be more like 3 cups.

You may not have creamed the butter and sugar properly. You need to get it to a light lemon color.

The oven temperature may be off. Get an oven thermometer to check this.

Come to think of it, I'm almost sure the amount of flour is too much for this recipe.


Edit: Actually probably could just double the eggs and it would be fine. I was reading the other thread as well.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Pastries & Baking