ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Baking a cake.... man i shouldn't have tried this
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Baking a cake.... man i shouldn't have tried this

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
OK, I thought I'd do something nice for my wife.

I wanted to bake her a cake. So i got all the stuff I need. Unfortunately we didn't have any round pans so I had to make a cake in a square pan.

i'm ready to decorate it. Frosting, etc. but something is wrong.

It's mounded. How can i get this thing to be even on top? it's cooked correctly. but i don't know how to smash down the big mound. Do i take it out of the pan and put it upside down on something?

Sorry for such a dumb question, I just don't know anyone that bakes except my wife.

Gear mentioned in this thread:

post #2 of 16
That happens because of the chemistry of the cake and the way it bakes, but it's nothing really to worry about if otherwise the cake is okay. And this is NOT a dumb question.

Here's what I would do:
  1. Make lots of extra frosting.
  2. Cut the cake crosswise into two layers.
  3. Make a thick layer of frosting on top of the cut surface of the bottom layer.
  4. Turn the top layer upside down, so the hump is on the bottom.
  5. Place the top layer hump side down into the filling so that the new top (cut side) of that layer is now flat.
  6. Wipe off any filling that has squished out, and use it (or just more of the frosting, if nothing squished) to make a thin layer of frosting over the whole cake (this is known as a "crumb coat").
  7. Let that set, and then slather the rest of the frosting all over the cake.

Sure, it may end up looking a little funny when it's cut, but it will be just fine to show off before then, and anyway, if it tastes good, who cares? :lips:

I commend you for trying. :D All my husband ever makes for me is oatmeal, salad, and tea (not all at the same time :lol:).
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
Reply
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
Reply
post #3 of 16
You cut it flat across the top with a long knife.
post #4 of 16
.......which works best if you happen to have a lazy susan, or cake turn-table, which helps you keep the cut flat and even.

The slice that comes off the top is the baker's treat. Then just frost and decorate the cake.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
post #5 of 16
Useing a serrated knife cut the cake in half, place the top on the bottom and the bottom turned upside down as the top. If bottom layer is bulged up when you ice the layers you can level them with iceing.

ps. this happens in rounded layers also.:chef:
CHEFED
Reply
CHEFED
Reply
post #6 of 16
Or just frost it as is, its the thought that counts not the looks :lol:
post #7 of 16
Mary is right. She will love it!
post #8 of 16
I like the rounded top of my cakes. I don't cut it off - why does this bother bakers?

Whatever you do do not "squish" the cake down.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply
post #9 of 16
not sure I've ever baked a cake that didn't mound up in the middle.

it bothers not one whit except for multi-layer constructions. the lower layers need a flat bottom and flat top to stack nicely. I like a bulging top layer . . .

even on the bits I need to lop off flat, a little bit of mounding height is still neat - provides a spot for more icing!
post #10 of 16
You could use a cake leveler
Cake Leveler - Wilton
post #11 of 16
Let's just say don't squish it flat. Everybody else has got it right... but if you're just cooking for your wife I'd say keep it mounded, it'll have that charming homemade look, sort of like on a pound cake or a banana loaf.
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
Reply
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
Reply
post #12 of 16
I bought one of those for a cake decorating class a long time ago and I could never get the dang thing to cut right. Or, if it did cut right, there were so many crumbs that even the first thin coat didn't take care of it and then it looked bad.
It's a wonderful thing to be spoiled in the way of food.
Reply
It's a wonderful thing to be spoiled in the way of food.
Reply
post #13 of 16
The easiest way would be to put some cardboard in the bottom of the pan to raise the cake up enough to that when you use a long slicing knife you can cut it level with the top edge of the baking pan as your guide. The pan edge acts as a guide and the cake doesn't slide around. It also seems to be less crumby that way.

Next time wrap some moistened strips of old dish towel or such around the edge of the pan while baking or try putting a flower nail in the bottom center of the pan under the parchment when you pour in the batter.

The idea bhind these tips is to make the center and sides bake at the same time and speed so iit lessens the hump.
post #14 of 16
Gummy-Bear There will indeed be crumbs when you cut the cake to either level it or torte it doesn't make any difference if a knife is used or the cake leveler. Some things tah can help with this....
1.) brush away most of the crumbs
2.) use a soft consistency icing to ice the cake. Many people use an icing that is too stiff which tears up the tender cake.
3.) Place enough incing on top to the cake to cover the top so you don't have to go back for more icing. Having to go back to the bowl for more icing increases the likelihood of spreading crumbs
4.) Good technique with the knife/spatula. This is another area people lack skill in. Once the knife or spatula is on the icing to spread it don't lift straight up. This will pull crumbs up. Once you are done spreading the icing on the top slide the knife sideways, back into icing that has already been pressed on to the cake across the cake while lifting very slightly. Same technique if you need to go back to the bowl for more icing. Make sure to check the knife for crumbs before dipping into the bowl.

In regards to using the leveler. Make sure the wire is level from leg to leg on the leveler. There are little notches on each leg for this. The little white feet stay on the counter top or table. The leveler is used with gentle pressure and a sieways sawing motion. Take care to not force the wire through the cake. Some people try using the leveler in the same manner as a wire cheese cutter i.e they try to just pull the wire through the cake. This is incorrect technique.

Doing a nice job of icing a cake smooth and without crumbs takes some practice, but is not an unduly hard skill to acquire.
post #15 of 16
It is pretty much impossible to ice a cake smooth with a rounded surface. The straight surface of the knife contacts the rounded surface of the cake tangentially which leaves knife marks.
post #16 of 16
Ohhhhh. Thanks.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Food & Cooking

Gear mentioned in this thread:

ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Baking a cake.... man i shouldn't have tried this