I am doing a 14/10/6 square wedding cake for the first time. I have never baked a 14" cake before. The pan is 2" high. The tier will be two layers, each torted (4 layers of cake and 3 layers of filling). Two questions:
1. Should I use a heating core to bake the 14" cakes?
2. How do you recommend handling them when torting so as not to have them fall apart?
i never use a core when baking and i never had a problem with the cooking process. once you cut the cake slip a cake board (16in) between the layers this will prevent it from cracking and falling apart. heres a little tip before you cut the cake, notch out a little piece of the cake from top to bottom of cake so when you put the cake back together once you tort it all the layers line up and will keep it leveled incase you did not cut the layers evenly when torting. good luck
I never use heating cores or flower nails, but many people swear by them, so it's going to be your preference. I grease-only-no-flour the pans, use baking strips and reduce the oven temp.
I slide each layer onto a large cardboard and use that to place it on the bottom cake.
I actually use multiple flower nails, bake even strips, and bake at 325 convection.
I torte my cakes as well. Sometimes I have used the slide method (sliding off of a flat sideless cookie sheet or board), but I normally use my Pampered Chef cake lifters I got a few years ago. For the larger layers, it helps if you can pop them in the freezer for a few minutes to allow them to firm up if your cake is very delcate.
I recently had this same question. I used a cardboard to slide the cake on. I used a little powdered sugar to keep it from sticking the board and then breaking. I covered the board with contact paper first so I could use it over and over wiping it and cleaning it if needed.
I bake in my 14-inch Magic Line pan with flower nails, parchment on the bottom only, don't use bake-even strips.
I like to pop my layers in the freezer for easier handling. Not frozen solid, just chilled enough so they're not so crumbly.
An alternative to cutting a notch out of the cake to line up later, as suggested by simplysweetbygigi, is to insert a toothpick horizontally into each torted layer. After filling, place the top layer by lining up the toothpicks, then remove them.
Thank you for all your suggestions! I am not familiar with flower nails. Can someone enlighten me?
Although I've never tried it, flower nails can be used in place of a baking core. You'd spray it with non-stick cooking spray, turn upside-down, and place in the center of your cake pan before filling with batter. It would just be another way of helping your cake to bake evenly. At least this is what I've heard. Other CC members, please correct me if I'm wrong. Good luck!
Flower nails are the things you make flowers on.
Here's my favorite, because it is 2.5" long and works well for heating cores. I have about 30 of them because I go through so many when I'm baking:
I use my homemade pan grease to prepare the pans and I do the flower nails the same.
Another thing I do...especially for the larger cakes....is to place parchment paper in the bottom of the pan. The LAST thing you want to do is to rebake a 14" square in case it sticks somewhere and ruins your cake! For wedding cakes I prepare all my pans with pan grease and parchment paper. I normally have all my parchments cut well before hand because it does take a little time (but shorter time then rebaking...)