Possible *eureka* Moment, Solved Sinking Chocolate Cake!

Baking By Chef_Stef Updated 18 May 2010 , 9:48pm by Chef_Stef

Chef_Stef Posted 22 Apr 2010 , 12:00am
post #1 of 18

I thought I'd post this because I found it very interesting.

I have the (ahem) BEST chocolate cake recipe in the world, except that it ALways sinks, no matter what, sometimes worse than others. I got used to this, and always just make extra, so I can patch the sink hole that always shows up. I mean, I've messed with oven temp, bake strips or not, more flour, etc., and nothing's changed it. It's one of the choc recipes where you add a cup of hot coffee at the end (secret ingredient, heh heh).

Here's the surprise: Recently I was mixing this cake, and I got to the very end, and was getting ready to pour into the pans, when I realized YIPES I forgot the sugar!! Not knowing if it would work, I dumped in the sugar at the END anyway and stirred it in, baked it, and icon_eek.gif whatdyaknow?--they rose and turned out PERfectly.

I've tried this every time since, when making this chocolate cake, and every time it turns out JUST RIGHT, rises, doesn't sink, and I swear the texture is even better than before, if that's possible.

So. Just a thought. If you have a 'sinkin' cake that never seems to work...you might try adding sugar last.

17 replies
cakeschmake Posted 22 Apr 2010 , 12:08am
post #2 of 18

Wow, who would have thought that it would work like that!
Super tip though!
I use a WASC recipe that I convert to chocolate and it tends to sink a little. I'm going to try this next time and see if it works for me too.

Thanks for sharing!! thumbs_up.gif

MissRobin Posted 22 Apr 2010 , 1:41pm
post #3 of 18

I have problems with the WASC recipe every single time, it sinks. I am about to give up on it totally, besides the fact last time it tasted kind of like chemical. It is the only cake I make using a box, would love to have a good dense white cake for stacking and carving.

Jenniferkay Posted 23 Apr 2010 , 6:14pm
post #4 of 18

i've been losing my mind to sinking chocolate. i'll try this. my recipe has both brown and white sugars, do you suggest adding both at the end or just the white as the brown might be clumpy?

mamawrobin Posted 24 Apr 2010 , 4:06am
post #5 of 18

I am so going to try this the next time I make a chocolate cake. Mine ALWAYS sinks in the middle. Can't wait to see if this works for me.

Thanks for sharing thumbs_up.gif

JohnnyCakes1966 Posted 24 Apr 2010 , 4:28am
post #6 of 18

Hmmmm......My "best chocolate cake recipe in the world" icon_razz.gif calls for hot coffee added at the end, too. I haven't had problems with it sinking, but I might try adding the sugar at the end just to see what happens. Isn't it interesting how the order of ingredients can totally change a cake?

And sorry...I can't help but laugh (with you, I hope!) when i think about you taking a bite of that cake without the sugar. icon_lol.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

LindaF144a Posted 28 Apr 2010 , 1:17am
post #7 of 18

Can I ask why you add the coffee in at the end?
I just made a chocolate cake recipe like that. The first time I added the coffee in the end and my cupcakes were moist. Today I mixed it with the sour cream, vanilla, cocoa ala Baking Illustrated and they came out rather dry.

Is there a secret chemistry thing happening when you add it to the end?

And about forgeting the sugar - does this mean you didn't cream it? Or did you not cream the sugar with the butter? Maybe you have a new way of mixing cakes! thumbs_up.gif

DebbyJG Posted 28 Apr 2010 , 1:36am
post #8 of 18

Just to tag on to this -- a couple weeks ago I made MY super fantastic always incredible scratch chocolate cake, except when I went to (ahem) taste test the crown, it was TERRIBLE! It didn't even taste like chocolate!

Then I realized, I'd forgotten the salt. One measly teaspoon of salt in a huge recipe. And without the salt, it didn't taste like chocolate, even though the cocoa was in there. Amazing how important one little teaspoon of something is.... icon_wink.gif

Chef_Stef Posted 12 May 2010 , 12:11am
post #9 of 18

Just an update on this.

I've switched to adding the sugar at the very last (after the hot coffee), each time I make my chocolate cake since this discovery, and every time they rise and STAY level (or even a little rounded!). And cupcakes keep a little round, rather than sinking, too.

The texture of the cake is reminiscent of...Ho-Ho's. icon_smile.gif

Don't know what it is, but I'm stickin' with it!

LindaF144a Posted 12 May 2010 , 11:40am
post #10 of 18

So does this mean you are not creaming the butter and sugar together? And are you just creaming the butter?

Inquiring minds want to know. icon_wink.gif

dutchy1971 Posted 12 May 2010 , 4:08pm
post #11 of 18
Originally Posted by LindaF144

So does this mean you are not creaming the butter and sugar together? And are you just creaming the butter?

Inquiring minds want to know. icon_wink.gif

my inquiring mind wants to know too

I have been playing with a new recipe this past week and each time it has sunk, the batter tastes fantastic but it's sinking and also getting a little dry on the edges.

Chef_Stef Posted 12 May 2010 , 11:13pm
post #12 of 18

This recipe calls for melted butter being combined with all the wet ingreds first, all the dry ingreds (including sugar) combined, then add the wet to the dry. Then slowly add the coffee.

So, I just add the sugar after the coffee, and it has been working great. No idea why.

ayerim979 Posted 12 May 2010 , 11:31pm
post #13 of 18

well this is definitely something very interesting and would most definitely have to try.

Thank you very much for sharing

dutchy1971 Posted 13 May 2010 , 2:19am
post #14 of 18

Thanks Chef_Stef

would you mind sharing your recipe? I'd love to try it.

I'm back to the drawing board tonight to try and correct this recipe I have icon_confused.gif

infinitsky Posted 13 May 2010 , 2:42am
post #15 of 18

Chef-Stef sorry to barge in like this, but I am so curious and like to ask if you will share your cake recipe. I can not stop thinking about the best chocolate recipe in the world!! Please share your recipe....
Thank you in advance for your time, no matter if you share or not.

keriskreations Posted 13 May 2010 , 4:24am
post #16 of 18

Okay, so I'm having the WORST cake day ever!!! icon_cry.gif My chocolate cakes sunk in the middle, but this is nothing new, so I've just worked around it - a pain yes, but managable because the cake tastes so awesome. It also adds the coffee at the end, but I'm intrigued by the melted butter - the butter in my recipe is soft, but not melted.

Today, my easy white cake recipe completely bombed! I was so done today/tonight! Ended up with two 12 inch cakes in pieces on my counter. Bless the DH - he tried to make me laugh, and I just wanted none of it!! We're having crazy weather here, so maybe it's the barametric pressure - damn weather!! ha!

Stef - definitely share your recipe if you wouldn't mind!!! thumbs_up.gif

Sweet_Treats_1 Posted 13 May 2010 , 4:52am
post #17 of 18
Originally Posted by ayerim979

Super exited, to find out my momma is cancer free 3/23/10

After two Dr's. diagnosed her with the disease. All I can say is miracles do happen.

Glad for you and your mother!! Praise God!

Chef-Stef share your recipe if you wouldn't mind icon_wink.gif

Chef_Stef Posted 18 May 2010 , 9:48pm
post #18 of 18

Thanks guys,

It's still working like a charm and delicious every time.

I don't mind sharing it, if you don't mind PM-ing me for it, since I have a bakery and am not ready to post my private recipes out there 'in public' so to speak. icon_wink.gif

If you PM me, I'll sure send it though.

Happy baking!

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