I have always used DH cake mixes. No additives, straight box mix. Lately I have tried the WASC recipe on this site. Lately I have tried Betty Crocker and Pillsbury. I have tried it 6 times and ALL my cakes would shrink from the sides about 1/2" inch AND the middle of the cake will cave in??
I would dissect the middle of the cakes to see if they were "under baked"; however they were completely DONE and cooked. Why would they shrink so much and cave in with the middle if the middle of the cakes have been cooked all they way??
Cooked 2 8" rounds at 350 degrees for about 30-35 minutes. I have also cooked at 325 degrees between 30-40 minutes, and the SAME results.
I use a cake tester to test cakes, and only pull out when it comes out with a few crumbs. I use bake even strips as well...
Hmmm, are you constantly opening the oven door? Are you over mixing?
I only open the door after 30 minutes. I turn the oven light one when I notice the top of the cake is golden brown. I mix for exactly 30 seconds on low speed and 2 minutes on medium speed.....according to the box mix instructions.....
I am also having this trouble, but only with the chocolate WASC.
I just got a new oven, so I'm sure that is part of my problem, but it is only for the chocolate...hmmm
Do you sift your cake mixes? I always do that, because they tend to sit on shelves for some time. And I see a significant difference. Besides I can't believe all the little rocks (hardened cake mix that WON'T mix in or dissolve) that i get out of every mix! So I like to be sure to throw those away. I would at least give that a try. AND I always bake on 325 instead of the 350 as directed.
And I NEVER go by the time...only bake until cake just starts to separate from sides, and springs back in center when touched lightly. I learned this, because different ovens will vary, and so will mixes.
I always sift my cake mixes as well. I also never have a problem with shrinking or sinking in the middle, and I always use the WASC receipe.
Sounds to like they are over baked. Don't follow the mixing directions on the box so much. Just mix until all ingredients are wll incorporated. Do you scrape the bottom of the bowl? It sounds a lil undermixed, and over baked.
Thank you folks. I do scrape the side and bottom of the bowl while mixing. Maybe I have to adjust the temp.
Trial and error....
Thank you ....
That's a great tip to sift the cake mix before using - I tend to try beating the lumps out then end up overbeating the cake and not even getting the lumps out so I have air pockets plus ugly discolorations in my cake I'm totally hoping to make a cake with a sunken centre so it will be easier to make the cake here in this link without carving - hahaha
I lower the temperature by 25 degrees.
Shrinking sides and sunken centers sounds like the edges get overdone before the center is cooked.
what altitude are you at? have you moved recently so that that might be different?
Not exactly sure of the alt?? I have not moved.
I did try the WASC receipe and adjusted the temp. and adjusted how I use the bake even strips..............OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! what a difference, I
NEVER had a cake come out as good as this one!!!!!!
Thank you all!!!!
I see you are in Atlanta - altitude shouldn't be an issue. Check your oven temp with a thermometer - check in several areas. Sift your cake mix. Don't bake til the edges separate from the pan - when the top looks done - check to see if it springs back with a light touch. Do Not follow the box mix instructions with WASC. As Mike1394 said, only mix until all ingredients are incorporated. Does that sum it all up from the prior suggestions? Adding one of mine - check the expiration date on the cake mix and your other ingredients, makes a big difference in the cake's ability to rise!
I never sift my cake mixes. Once I have all of the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl I turn on the mixer for a minute or so. Much quicker and easier than sifting.
I bake at 340deg for roughly 40 minutes. When the cake pulls away from the sides it is ready. Also, I don't use the baking strips for the 8" or 9" rounds but I do use them on anything larger and any squares. Makes a big difference on the corners.
Glad you figured it out.