I'm a newbie and learning lots!! I've been using the WASC recipe with DH boxed cake mix. I recently read that it often causes cakes to have hard edges, sink in the middle, etc. Which brand of boxed cake mix is the best? TIA for your responses!
I use the DH box mix sometimes and I think that problem exists with all the box mixes especially if they are not baked evenly. I use DH because the cake rises much higher IMO, YMMV. I usually end up trimming the edges to fit the cake boards anyway.
Pilsbury...I have never had a problem with using it in WASC and I use the recipe all the time. I also use a flower nail when baking, which really helps and then press the middle down immediately after taking the cake out of the oven to make it even.
I have used both Pillsbury and Betty Crocker and have never had the problem w/ hard edges when following the Wilton temp and bake times for specific size pans (found on the Wilton website under Cake, Making a Cake). However, when I use a stainless steel bowl, I too run into the same problems of sinking in the middle and hard around the edges. I'm anxious to how others tell you to resolve this problem.
I would think your problems lie more with "how" you're baking than which brand you're using.
If you're having difficulty with hard edges, you might think about using baking strips...you can buy these at Michael's or WalMart in the Wilton section.
If the middle is sinking, you might put a flower nail upside down in the pan before you pour in the batter. This will heat the middle of the cake faster and cause more even cooking. I typically use both of these methods at the same time.
You may even try lowering your oven temp if the sides continue to bake too quickly...I know most boxes say 350, but not all ovens bake at the same temperature (has to do w/ how your oven heats i.e. gas or electric, how clean it is, where the item is placed in the oven, etc...) You might lower the temp and bake the cake a little longer...you'll probably have to play around with correct temp. Some of my cakes I have to bake on 325.
I've used several different brands with the WASC and they all seem to work well. Good luck to you! Hope you have some better results soon!
I use pilsberry (spelling??) and my cakes always come out moist and delicious, and I never level (although I don't do fondant).
For my WASC I always use the store brand (Pathmark in my area). I picked it up on sale once for a short notice family cake and people raved about it, so I stuck with it. Just the white mix though, any other flavor, I use BC.
A trick for leveling that I found online is using a cloth to press the cake down even as soon as it comes out of the oven. I just lay the cloth across the cake and begin pressing down all around to make it even. Since I started doing this, I've never had to level by cutting as I used to do.
I love Betty Crocker!!
I am also a fan of Pilsbury. It gives me a nice evenly baked cake and I harldy ever have to do any leveling.
For WASC, I use theie basic White mix and get RAVE reviews every time!
I have used all three with success, and I use the enhanced cake formula extender recipe on here. I just stock up when one of them is one sale. I too, use baking strips and flower nail (on larger than 14" caked), and bake at 325, takes a littler longer, but they bake evenly!
I love Duncan Hines and Betty Crocker with my WASC recipe and they come out great. I also bake at 325 and use the baking strips.
Pillsbury! Problem is so many places are replacing their Pillsbury white with funfetti and you can't take the sprinkles out of the funfetti. When I find the white I stock up!
You all are fantastic! Thanks for the quick responses! I posted a picture of my 2nd cake. I know I still have a lot to learn...
I use Pillsbury as well, and bake at 325.
Your cake is very good.
Nice even top, smooth icing. A little scrape at the bottom, be sure to hold your tool as vertical as you can, that will prevent scrapes.
Extremely nice, especially for a second cake!
Betty Crocker is my first choice, Pillsbury 2nd, Duncan Hines 3rd.
I use DH almost exclusively in my WASC cakes. I think the yield is more to start with.
I always add a box of instant pudding mix when using the DH because those mixes don't have pudding in them.
I don't get any more "crispy edges" with DH than any other mix.
I DID get crispy edges when I was using spray on no-stick (PAM, Baker's Joy, etc.) to grease my pans. When I switched over to either shortening+flour or, my favorite, Wilton Pan Release in the bottle--not the spray, I didn't have problems with crispy edges.