Toba's Chocolate Fudge Cake..falling! Please Help Me!!

Decorating By springlakecake Updated 5 Jun 2009 , 11:50am by springlakecake

springlakecake Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 2:32pm
post #1 of 12

Help me please! I have made this recipe several times and now I have baked it 3 times and it falls the last 10 minutes or so in the oven! I have little experience with scratch baking. I do not know what is going wrong. I already told my customer the cake was from scratch, so it's not like I can really go back and bake my old stand-by doctored cake mix.

11 replies
springlakecake Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 2:35pm
post #2 of 12

Here is the recipe. The only difference is that in the book the ingredients are weighed instead of measured ( I am weighing)

underthesun Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 5:04pm
post #3 of 12

I made his recipe the other day and it also fell. I will say it fell evenly. It seems to have a fudge consistency and dense, so I thought maybe this was the way it was suppose to turn out.

I am very careful to follow Tobas directions specifically. I have made her moist yellow cake and it turned out great, while a friend made it, not having a paddle attachment and rose so high, it overflowed. So, I was surprised at the directions of this recipe, just adding all the ingredients at once.

I just couldn't do that, so I added the ingredients as most cakes directions would give. maybe this was my problem. Did you add them all at once?

Wish I could help. I know you can contact Toba at her website. Just google it. Maybe she will give direction.

springlakecake Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 5:19pm
post #4 of 12

Well I have followed her directions to the letter, and I have also done it more like a traditional recipe would have (cream butter with sugar)

I was reading a lot that sometimes it is due to too much leavening agent. Also this recipe calls for baking soda (due to the buttermilk I guess). It calls for 2 1/4 tsp...I guess baking soda is about 4 times more powerful than baking powder. So doesnt this seem like A LOT?

I just tried adding 1 tsp soda and 2 tsp powder and it went much better. Have yet to taste it though. I just dont know enough about the science of baking though. I am baffled though that I have made it about 4 other times without a hitch.

underthesun Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 6:23pm
post #5 of 12

Wow, marissa! Looking at your photos, I can't believe you aren't a cake "scientist". Awesome cakes!

It is puzzling that you've made it that many times and now it's not working. Do you think something could be going on with your oven. I calibrated mine about 3 months ago - ran 25 degree hot. So in my oven I have been baking most cakes at 300 degrees. Suddenly, with summer hitting, I noticed it was taking forever to get cakes done. I re-calibrate and now it's cooking right at temp. Just a thought. Hope you figure it out.

springlakecake Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 6:30pm
post #6 of 12

nah...I just started baking from scratch a few months ago. I was happy with the doctored cake mixes, but I wanted the cakes to be really special so I have been trying really hard to learn. It is a lot more fun and rewarding to bake from scratch, but it certainly isnt as consistent.

I think my substitution of some baking powder did help some. The cake seems okay.

underthesun Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 6:41pm
post #7 of 12

I'm going to make a note on my recipe to try the change in baking powders. Maybe I'll try it again.

My DH loves the science of baking. He has one of Alton Brown's books and has a book called "what Einstein told his chef". DH has been working on one cake recipe for a couple of weeks now and I'm using his latest Milk Chocolate cake recipe in a cake I'm decorating right now. I'm praying it doesn't dry out before tomorrow. Scratch always worries me, but I'm like you, I like the idea of using scratch recipes. I decided to use simple syrup, on the cake. The taste, from scraps, is awesome. But it is a very dense small crumb, not fudgy, which tends to have the texture of dryness. Does that make sense? I'm crossing my fingers.

Good luck on your cake! Happy baking.

artscallion Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 6:48pm
post #8 of 12

I've made this recipe a few times. I haven't had any problems, though I do find the results a little delicate for stacking.

You do add the ingredients all at once. This is not an uncommon recipe for mixing a scratch cake, particularly chocolate.

underthesun Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 7:12pm
post #9 of 12

Thanks, next time I try it, I'll go ahead and throw it all in together (if you say so). ha ha icon_smile.gif

playingwithsugar Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 7:15pm
post #10 of 12

UnderTheSun -

Does your DH have the book Bakewise, by Shirley Corriher? It's a follow-up to her first book, Cookwise. If not, it'll make a great gift for him; he's going to love it. Another great book is Ratio, by Michael Ruhlman. It's about the standard ratios of ingredients in general cooking, not just baking. The baking section talks about the ratios of flour, sugar, etc, in baking different items (cake, muffins, breads, etc).

Theresa icon_smile.gif

underthesun Posted 4 Jun 2009 , 7:25pm
post #11 of 12

Playingwithsugar: No he doesn't and it's so hard to buy this type of thing for him. He's a bit of a cooking "snob", so the typical cookbook is out of the questions. I'm going to mark these down for Christmas ideas. Thanks for letting me know about them icon_biggrin.gif

springlakecake Posted 5 Jun 2009 , 11:50am
post #12 of 12

Well I made it again last night with my tweaked recipe and it went perfectly. I used 1 tsp soda and 2 powder. Before the cake was bubbling out of the pan and then falling the last few minutes of baking. Now it is baking with just a slight 'puff' on top. I have now done a fair bit of research on baking soda and powder and how each reacts. I guess you need something like buttermilk, sour milk, vinegar, sourcream or yogurt (something acidic) to make baking soda work. It also starts working the minute it comes into contact with the liquid. So you need to be careful making substitutions to regular milk (as opposed to buttermilk) when baking soda is called otherwise it might not activate. Also you can't let the batter sit around too long. Baking powder on the other hand is more reliable and consistent apparently. It also generally is double acting so it is activated in two stages. this is the way I understand it anyway, correct me if I am wrong!

So I am really feeling like I was having problems with the baking soda. I am not sure why though, since I have made the recipe other times and been okay. But after my "research" it does seem like an awful lot of baking soda for the recipe? 2 1/4 tsp if as they say it is about 4 times more powerful than powder? (that would be like putting in 3+ TB of powder?!? Love to hear from a person who really knows the science behind baking!

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