How Do I Stop This From Happening Again?

Decorating By kel58 Updated 21 Sep 2008 , 10:46am by linedancer

kel58 Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 1:37am
post #1 of 23

Hello everyone. I'm very new to decorating and ran across a problem this morning. I was baking a 13x9 sheet cake this morning using a Betty Crocker mix and got a little suprise when i went to check if it was done. I followed the directions on the box, but my edges of the cake were only about an inch thick, but the middle was probably closer to 3 inchs. So ,once I leveled it, I ended up with an inch high cake! I am I correct to assume that its becasue the edges cooked too fast? How can I stop this from happening again? Im going to have to make another layer to put on top of my tiny one. Could I adjust my oven temp? Oh and I did use food colouring to colour the batter fun colours, but I have never had that make a difference before so i'm guessing that isnt he issue.
Thanks for any insite
Kelly

22 replies
leah_s Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 1:41am
post #2 of 23

Yes, definitely turn you oven temp down. 325 or even 300

Audraj Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 1:46am
post #3 of 23

Also, a 9x13 cake, if you want it to rise enough to be 2" high, requires one and a half cake mixes. Usually, I don't level a 9x13 cake. It does rise a bit higher in the middle, but if I use more than one mix, the sides rise up a lot more and the difference isn't that much. I then ice so the top is level, using more icing around the edges where it's lower.

Mac Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 1:52am
post #4 of 23

Also try "Bake Even" strips from Wilton.

I use 2 mixes in my Fat Daddio 9X13 pan and then level it off--perfect every time.

CakesNwine Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:04am
post #5 of 23

I use strips of towels, wet and pinned around the pans--my cakes turn out even every time. Those baking strips are expensive, and the wet towel strips do the same thing. Hope you try them--but of course you don't have the trimmed off cake for cakeballs!

MaraCarter Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:18am
post #6 of 23

A few things that I have learned along the way.
Let your oven heat up for about 30 minutes before you bake your cake.
Only grease the bottom of your cake pan. (My mom said a cake cant climb a grease side. lol)
Betty C mix have the least amount of batter per box. I personally have better luck with DH mix.
I found to level out your cake mix when you put it in a pan. Pour your batter in the pan and then spin pan on counter and it will even out mix.
Dont use a dark cake pan.
Practice, Practice, also helped me.

Good luck on your next one. Hope this helps you!!

amy27 Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:24am
post #7 of 23

Hi I use the wilton bake-even strips works every time you don't have to adjust your temp and it gives you a really light crust on the outside of your cake I always get a 1 1/2 - 2 inch cake every time out of a 13x9 pan hope it helps.

Naturepixie Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:47am
post #8 of 23

I have had bad luck with those bake even strips. I don't know what I was doing wrong...I soaked them in water like the package said but by the third use the grey stuff was crumbling off.... Maybe I just got a bad batch of bake even strips...So now I just bake my cakes at a lower temp and a little longer...

calynmom Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:49am
post #9 of 23

I also use the strips of terry cloth and I also use the flower nail in the middle. Cakes come out perfectly even.

CAKESNWINE.....my husband had that very same complaint...that he didn't get some cake balls.

indydebi Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 2:59am
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaraCarter

Only grease the bottom of your cake pan. (My mom said a cake cant climb a grease side. lol)




My Home Ec teacher tried to tell us that, too, but here's why that theory is flawed.

The heat source in an oven is at the bottom. The heat is PUSHING the batter up the sides of the pan. The batter is more easily PUSHED up the sides of the pan if the sides of the pan are greased up, so the batter can slide up with no problem.

When the sides are not greased, the batter actually "grabs" onto the sides of the pan. It clings to the ungreased pan instead of moving right along to give a nice height to the cake.

I grease-only-no-flour (sides, too), and use baking strips. Reduce heat to 325 in a home oven .... I bake at 275 in my convection oven.

Here's a pic of how my cakes usually turn out:
LL

wehmom Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 3:18am
post #11 of 23

I grease pan bottom and sides and then pull batter up the sides to the top of the pan. I also use DH to get more batter. My cakes alway rise to the top and are level. Hope this helps.

shanasweets Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 3:24am
post #12 of 23

I use the extender receipe with my cakes and this makes a nice full 9 x 13. I also use a flower nail in the middle. I mainly use duncan hines.

MaraCarter Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 3:32am
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Quote:

My Home Ec teacher tried to tell us that, too, but here's why that theory is flawed.

The heat source in an oven is at the bottom. The heat is PUSHING the batter up the sides of the pan. The batter is more easily PUSHED up the sides of the pan if the sides of the pan are greased up, so the batter can slide up with no problem.

When the sides are not greased, the batter actually "grabs" onto the sides of the pan. It clings to the ungreased pan instead of moving right along to give a nice height to the cake.

I grease-only-no-flour (sides, too), and use baking strips. Reduce heat to 325 in a home oven .... I bake at 275 in my convection oven.




This made me giggle alittle and think ....Alton Brown from Good Eats is that you? This is my husband favorite show and he loves the theory side of food. It has been a horrible week at work. I think we had every mean person on the planet in. Anyway, Even though you probably didnt mean to, this made me giggle. SO , Thank you!!

mw902 Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 3:35am
post #14 of 23

I am confused, the towel strips, are they just regular old towels soaked with water? They don't dry and catch on fire? I was going to buy some wilton strips today but them suckers are a bit expensive for us broke decorators! LOL!

dandelion56602 Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 4:48am
post #15 of 23

Indydebi, I've tried & tried to get my cakes to rise like that & never been successuful icon_sad.gif As for the bake even strips they are pricey, but if you have a michaels or hobby lobby use the 40% off coupon. They're really worth it!

Here's a quick glance at some troubleshoting. My 1st thought was over mixing
http://www.joyofbaking.com/ButterCakeTroubleshooting.html

This is my favorite
http://www.baking911.com/cakes/problems.htm

sugardaze Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 11:23am
post #16 of 23

This is how I make my own magi-strips (thanks ot Dede Wilson of "Wedding Cakes You Can Make"

Fold the paper towels back & forth like an accordion to make a layered strip about 1.5" wide. Soak in water. Take a string and measure the pan you will use. Add 4". Cut out an aluminum foil the same length as your string. Place the paper towels on the aluminum foil. You might need several paper towels placed side by side depending on the length of your string based on your pan.Fold sides down and paper clip (the giant ones) to your pan. Works like a charm and saves you money.

Note: home-made strips can only be used once.

dandelion56602 Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 8:11pm
post #17 of 23

It may save money but that sure as heck wouldn't save time. I would hate to have to do that every time. I usually use the same baking strip & I do 2-3 layers per cake (yes, I only have 1 pan per size right now) and I take it off after i turn the cake out, soak it, clean the pan & then it's ready again. 40% is a big discount!

Deb_ Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 10:27pm
post #18 of 23

I've had the same bake even strips for years and I love them too, I very rarely have to level my cakes. I just bought a new batch for my larger pans and they are 19.99 regular price but I had a 40% off at Michael's so for 12.00 you can't go wrong. They do last a very long time if you take care of them. I never bake a cake any higher than between 300 - 325 deg.

With the price of paper towels and aluminum foil plus the work of having to make them for every pan every time you make a cake, how is that cheaper or easier than the bake even strips? icon_confused.gif

indydebi Posted 20 Sep 2008 , 10:54pm
post #19 of 23

dkelly, I agree .... I've had mine for years. They don't look pretty anymore, but they work.

And in my shop, "Time is Money" ..... I wont' pay my girls the time it takes to make a homemade strip, when they can use an existing one in seconds.

jr33176 Posted 21 Sep 2008 , 2:49am
post #20 of 23

How DO you keep the baking strips around your pans? I no longer have the pins the baking strips came with and when I put them around my pans with paperclips, they fall down and end up resting on the oven rack. Then, I take them off because I don't want them to burn. Is it okay if they rest on the oven rack? How do you attach them so they stay tight around the pan? Do you place pins vertically or horizontally?

indydebi Posted 21 Sep 2008 , 3:11am
post #21 of 23

I put the pins in both directions, so I'm not sure that makes a difference or not. I've lost some of my pins, too, and I just use regular straight pins. I bought some longer than normal ones (they have a little yellow ball-head ... not the all-metal-flathead).

I wet the strips, pull them snug around the pans and insert the pins. On square pans, I try to have the end of the strip land on a corner ... then I can shove the pin into side "A" and have it come out on side "B". Pretty simple.

Round pans are sometimes more difficult. Since I've done it for so many years, it's finally pretty simple for me now, but in the beginning, I'd wrap the strip ... hold it snug in place and slip it off the pan ... insert the pin ... then slip it back onto the pan.

The last box of strips I bought had paperclip-like pins and I don't like them as well as I do the regular 'ole straight pin.

mclaren Posted 21 Sep 2008 , 6:14am
post #22 of 23

i use wet towels (no, they never catch fire, so far), & also only grease without flouring my pans, never had problems cakes not rising, or sticking to the pans.

linedancer Posted 21 Sep 2008 , 10:46am
post #23 of 23

I lost some of my pins too, besides which they weren't too sturdy. I had some "T" pins. You can find them at any sewing or fabric shop, JoAnns, Hancocks,probably Hobby Lobby, in the notions section. They are about 1 1/2 to 2" long (am guessing here), with a "T" arm at the top and very strong, won't bend. Makes a good replacement.

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%