On May 16, I posted a question "Can you freeze a decorated cake".
I did the cake on May 27 and boxed and then put the box in a large trash bag and tied it really well and stored it in the refrigerator for a week (the refrigerator was closed the entire time because no one was home to open and close constantly), the cake was delivered to her on June 3. I spoke with the customer yesterday and was informed that the cake was delicious and moist, no problems. I got another order from her for another birthday cake, she thought that the cake was made the day before !!!!
I also made a separate test cake and stored it in a cake container for the same amount of time and it is delicious and moist also.
The decorations and frosting did not change.
I just wanted to say thanks to everyone for their input. As always, You are the best
That is really great to know.....I wonder if you could put in the the freezer wrapped up that way and it still be okay??? What a time saver that would be if you could decorate cakes ahead, when you had time, and then just freeze them. I know I freeze alot of sweet breads and they freeze wonderfully, I've had some in the deep freeze for four months.....no one knows I didn't bake them fresh that day but I've never frozen anything that was deocrated.
That is very good to know. I am always afraid to keep it that long, but you just never know when you'll be in a pinch.
So true Mchelle... I can't tell you how many times I say I'm going to bake some cakes and just freeze them... but have I?? Nope! lol .. I've never tried freezing or refrigerating a decorated cake... I've always just rushed in from a 10 hour day at work to bake and decorate all my cakes... ya'd think I'd get it through my thick head to just bake some up, put them well wrapped in the freezer and just pop one out the morning on my way to work so I wouldn't have to bake, let it cool, icing and then decorate till 1 a.m. in the morning! lol
I have heard of more than one person doing this, refridgerating for a week and finding the cake was fine. I guess I still wouldn't do it as I do find that even refridgerated and sealed, to me, there is a taste something akin to freezer burn, with anything that sits this long. Perhaps we are not all sensitive to it, but I still would freeze any cake that has to sit for more than a couple of days. Regarding freezing decorated cakes, well there is some effect on the texture of the icing, especially the all-shortening and water icing, but the taste is fine. I wouldn't anymore than a couple of weeks ahead. Your shelf life for a cakemix cake that has been frozen, is shorter once the cake is defrosted, so that is something to keep in mind.
Haha, just my opinion on the refridgerating aspect, but fact on the freezing a cake mix cake making for a shorter shelf life.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes
And we value your opinion SquirrellyCakes!! I'm always reading your posts and learning from them!! I'm always afraid my DH (who is now retired.. lucky man) will put an onion in the fridge and the cake will take on that taste *ack* ... that would be so nasty ... as far as freezing, we have a freezer that he only freezes ice in for his fishing trips... nothing but the ice is in that freezer... I still worry though that it will taste funny ... guess that's why I haven't tried it .. I'll have to do one and we, at home will just be the guinea pigs ... lol
Haha, onion flavoured buttercream, now that would be different, haha!
I should have been more specific because going back and reading the post, I am thinking perhaps it may be taken badly. What I mean by this, is, if you are selling cakes to the public, don't do this on a regular basis. This lady was in a pinch, trying to find something that would work for this one time and refrigerating was the option she felt would fit her needs. I still would have opted for the freezing over the refridgerating and there are a few good reasons. For one, there is generally more control over the moisture levels in the freezer. Though cakes and icing do not freeze solid like meat does, they still freeze enough to prolong the life and flavour of the cake. Freezing a cake for up to a month generally results in little tastable difference to that cake. The difference would be more in the icing texture once defrosted, but not a big deal. And once defrosted, your shelf life is shorter.
Refridgerating a cake, even when well sealed, well the cake can take on a cardboard taste, that happens. But also, the shelf life of the ingredients is a factor, for instance the best before date on the milk, butter, eggs, cream etc., those are things you must take into consideration. Yes, even when well sealed the cake can still absorb food transfer odours.
The fact the fridge wasn't opened and the fact she sealed the box in plastic, were added precautions.
Now if you are making a cake mix cake according to the box and your eggs are fresh and it is iced with the all shortening and water icings, well heck, there are enough chemical preservatives in the cake mix alone to preserve almost anything.
And you are right, what we experiment with on our families is another story.
My big concern was that a lot of newbie cake decorators would think that it was acceptable to make up cakes a week in advance, for customers on a regular basis. I don't know how many times I have seem this come up on the Wilton site, where people were making cakes and refridgerating them so they could decorate at their own pace. That is fine for practice, but not for business.
If you have a dedicated refridgerator strictly for cakes, there is less risk of food odour transfer. If you have a refridgerator where you can actually maintain a certain level of humidity, that is good too.
I am one of those people that can taste subtle differences in food, so I notice when something is not absolutely fresh.
It absolutely frightens me to see the kind of risks some cake decorators on some sites take, on a regular basis. They are selling to the public with little or no awareness of safe food practices, general baking knowledge etc. Many of them are excellent decorators but have little or no knowledge of the baking or food handling areas.
I worry when folks see one time when something worked that they will think it is a blanket practice for any other ocassion and it is not. For example a from scratch butter cake will dry out much faster when refridgerated. A cake with a fruit filling can mold and get soggy etc.
Haha, I guess the fact my mother would do things like this and not notice the taste difference, when I would be just about sick from the taste, is another factor, haha! Gosh, I don't know how many times I gave her cake that she would keep forever in the fridge and still eat and yet I could smell and taste the difference.
Anyway, hope nobody was offended!
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes
The cakes did not have any funny taste or smell.
I tried my test cake on different people and they all said that it was fine, they thought that I was using them to test a new recipe. Believe me, the people that I chose are very outspoken and would have made comments if anything tasted out of the ordinary.
Also, the person who brought the cake is an outspoken person and would have told me if anything was wrong and would ask for her money back.
So, with all this positive feedback, I feel that the cakes were okay.
I absolutely agree on the food handling and safety issue.
Eggs,creams,butter,milk and even fruit or cream fillings in cakes can go rancid quickly and yes you have to be aware of the expiration dates on the items that were added to the recipes.
I agree, this was the frst time that I did this. I always make my cakes fresh or either freeze them before decorating.
This was a must because her grandson wanted a sponge Bob and I am the only one in my area that do character cakes. Plus the fact that I know her personally.
PLEASE everyone who is new to cake decorating, don't do this on a regular basis.
As a matter of fact, I wouldn't do this again, the whole time I was on vacation, I kept thinking about the cake
Stephanie, I know this isn't your regular routine. I just wanted to make sure folks didn't think it should be done regularly. I am sure it was fine.
Sometimes I find that people read something and apply it to everything. For example someone that makes an icing with cream, might do it. Now as long as the cream was within the expiry period while the iced cake sat in the fridge it would be fine. But say it wasn't or someone had made a pudding filling or something like that, well there would be more risk.
So though it was fine in your case, someone else might make a cake that couldn't handle a week in the fridge and it might make someone sick or make them lose customers.
Anyway, kiddo, sorry, just used this as an example and wasn't trying to chew you out or make you look bad, I fully understood that this was an exception to your routine and that you weren't recommending it as a habit. Just had a hard time conveying the message in such a way as to not make it look like that!
Hope I didn't cause hard feelings. I worry a lot about folks that have no baking experience or experience with food. Sometimes I get emails from people that leave a cake for two weeks in the fridge, or worse, on the counter or leave an iced cake for 6 months in the freezer. They have no concept of how long food is good for or any of the food handling risks. Some of the information that most people would think of as common sense, isn't common sense to someone new at this.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes