I feel kind of silly asking this, but how do you figure out how many servings to get out of a carved cake? Do you figure it out by how much cake you had to bake? Which that doesn't make any sense to me considering that you don't end up using all the cake. If anyone can tell me how they figure it out I would really appreciate it. TIA!!
Here's how I estimate it: I assume that all pieces cut would be approx. 2" H x 1" W x 4" D. Then I count how many pieces could be cut using this size as a guide. Then I take into account that each piece will be cut small or larger depending on the hieght in that area of the cake. I know this doesn't make any sense to you...but it makes perfect sense in my head!
Can anybody explain further in this subject? Do not understand quite well.
Or, how much extra cake do I need to bake in order to get a cake for the servings I want?
I always figure how much cake I start with. ie, Elmo, in my pics, was 3 8"tiers, plus a ball pan, so about 36-42 servings, then I just eyeball how much I take off. I think for that one I estimated about 20-25% was cut off. Maybe there's a better way, but that's how I do it.
When I make a 3-D cake I always plan it with measurements to get the proportions correct and to bake enough cake. Figuring the amount of cake to bake in order to sculpt the cake is the easy part(significant time with a ruler and calculator.) I find it really helps to find a good photo or model for what you are making. I've used my kids toys as models many times. Figuring servings is tough. I estimate the servings based on my measurements and always over estimate on the cake. I would rather have too much cake than to little. Most of the carved cakes I've done were for small gatherings so getting enough cake was not a problem. I usually figure approximately 2"x1"x4" pieces. It really is a guessing game for me. I'm sorry if that is not much help. Maybe someone out there has a better method that they will share.
Did that make any sense?
I think you need to work this backwards. How many servings do you need? Sketch the design to scale on a piece of paper. A good rough drawing would do. Then relate that to a 3-D rectangle or cube or rectangle that would best fill the amount of servings. Play with the numbers to get a length, width, and height that would work. Overestimate to allow for what you will cut away. Scale your drawing up or down to fit the volume. That's the thought process that gets you to enough servings.