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Cake Boards

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
My cakes seem to shrink while they are baking or cooling, and then they are too small for the cake boards. Is there a way to prevent the shrinking or a tip for cutting the boards to size?

Also, does anyone have a source for square cake boards? Is there a material different than cardboard that works better?
post #2 of 12
I always noticed that overcooked cakes shrink too much, so cook them only until there is no wet on a toothpick inserted in the center. Don't go beyond that amount of time, even if your recipe says to cook longer. Your oven might be different. You might also try not greasing the sides, just the bottom. Let them cool ten minutes in the pan, then cut around with a thin knife before unmolding the cake onto the rack.
Why do you want the cake to be exactly the same size as the board? If you're stacking layers to make tiers of a wedding cake, the cake boards can be even an inch smaller than the cake, so get them smaller. But if it's just to have something to put the cake on between teh cake and the serving dish, you can still get the board a little smaller.
I've found square cake boards in london, and i imagine you could order them online somewhere. You don;t say where you live, but i'm assuming the states?

I've also found thick cake boards (maybe a quarter inch, maybe a little less) and i believe they were some kind of thick and strong styrofoam covered in foil or something.
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
I live in Connecticut. I've looked around online some, but haven't had much luck.

Thanks for the tips on the shrinking. I definitely think not greasing the sides will help.
post #4 of 12
The structure of a cake is somewhat like a synthetic sponge i.e. it has lots of little tiny hollow spaces. At oven temperature, these spaces contain a tiny bit of steam as well has the heated air. When this air and steam cool the air spaces contract or shrink (Charles Law). So the cake should shrink slightly as it cools. As siduri noted, overbaking the cake will dry out cake and it will actually shrink in the oven as the moisture leaves it.

Also consider that an 8" pan, for example, is 8" inside diameter and an 8" cake board is just that, 8 inches. Since physics tells us the cake will shrink slightly upon cooling it is logical that the cake would be slightly smaller than the board. Center the cake on the board, apply a thin coat of icing which should make up the size discrepancy between cak and board and then cover as you see fit with icing or fondant etc.
post #5 of 12
Not greasing the sides works wonders, because it lets the cake climb up the sides, but if you overbake it will still shrink. Usually by the time you ice the cake, it takes up any extra board that may have been showing, if not just go around with scissors or a knife to trim it .
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check out my books at the pastrymama1 shop at www.half.ebay.com
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post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
I still feel like the center of the cakes are cooked properly, and I have started using a cake core, so I hesitate to say that they are overbaked.

Thanks for all of the tips!
post #7 of 12
Hi smack.

Here are two links that may find the cake boards you are looking for.

Cake Boards

Cake Pads Free Shipping

Hop these help.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Many thanks! I really like the into the oven site.
post #9 of 12
Many cake boards used by bakers are "twin wall" plastic. That is, similiar to corrugated cardboard, but made of food grade plastic. It's the same material you see for temporary (and permanent!) signs.
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #10 of 12
You can order cake drums from Phiel and Holing. I use foam core board from Hobby Lobby or Michaels. I cut it to size with a hot knife.
post #11 of 12
I must admit that I have never used cardboard for cakeboards.

I mainly do fruitcake, but even for regular cakes, I use covered Masonite or 3-6mm [1/8-1/4-inch] thick MDF ..
post #12 of 12
ohhh....I love fruitcake. Grandma made the best!

My cousin Doyle makes fruitcakes from my grandmother's recipe. We had a family reunion recently and he made them...yum.

I might try out the MDF board. I have a band saw and a skill saw so I could cut them too.
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