My Torting Disaster

Decorating By somwhere Updated 8 Jun 2010 , 8:21pm by KHalstead

somwhere Posted 8 May 2010 , 2:38am
post #1 of 20

Today has been a nightmare and I don't know what happened. I'm working on a wedding cake for a friend's daughter who is getting married tomorrow. It will be a big cake - 18", 14", 10" and 6". The bottom layer was baked in a half pan. I used boxed cake mix. This is the first (and maybe the last) time I have tried torting a cake.

The bottom layer is/was two layers of chocolate, sliced into 4 layers and filled with cream cheese frosting. I put in 6 wooden dowels. The 10" layer is/was white cake, torted into 4 layers, filled with a lemon filling that I bought at a bakery shop. It has 4 wooden dowels in it. The 14" layer seems to be okay.

I sliced and filled the cakes and crumb coated them last night. The first sign of trouble came this morning. Both cakes were bulging out between the layers. The chocolate cake had puddles of a pale orange syrup that appears to have leaked out from under the bottom layer. Chocolate cake - white filling - I don't know where the orange syrup came from. I put a blob of frosting on top of the 10" cake preparing to ice it. The cake literally fell apart. It looked like a landslide had happened. A few minutes later I moved the 18" cake and it started the same landslide. Huge chunks fell out (or fell off). Needless to say there is absolutely no way to repair either cake.

I'm wondering if I put too much filling between the layers making them too heavy. Or did I do something else wrong. I am now in the process of baking more cakes. I am afraid to try torting them again. Does anyone have any idea what happened? I will greatly appreciate any help you can give.

19 replies
iamcakin Posted 8 May 2010 , 2:51am
post #2 of 20

Oh sorry that you are having this trouble! A couple of things...and forgive me if you are an experienced baker.

Did you let your cake cool completely before splitting to fill?
Did you pipe a dam prior to filling?
How thick was your filling?

I am not sure what you mean about the dowels, are you using them as support for stacking? If so, then they should be inserted AFTER the cakes are iced. Although too late for this cake, I STRONGLY recommend using SPS for stacking instead of dowels.

HTH, and good luck with the re-bake! icon_smile.gif

Karen421 Posted 8 May 2010 , 3:01am
post #3 of 20

Well, sorry this happen to you! I am by no means an expert, but how thick are your layers? Did you put a dam around the outside edge before you filled them? How thick was the filling? When I stack 4 tiers I usually only do 2 layers - 2" thick. But that is because my cakes are not as dense as some recipes. I also try not to overfill them. I like to use the SPS system, for stacking if I use box mixes or if I am traveling a long distance. HTH

mamawrobin Posted 8 May 2010 , 4:22am
post #4 of 20

This is why I have my cakes filled and crumbcoated a couple of days before they're due. You just never know what might happen. thumbs_up.gif

As iamcakin said I'm not sure what you mean about the dowels either. They are inserted after the cake is iced. Did you use 2" or 3" pans? Maybe you used too much filling. Like the others have mentioned you need a dam to keep your filling from seeping out.

Hopefully you will have better luck with the next cakes. What time is the cake due tomorrow? Are you covering with fondant? Hopefully the decorating won't take you as long as it does me icon_lol.gif . I need a day just to decorate because I'm so slow.

I'm sorry that you're having so much trouble. I hate it when things go wrong.

dalis4joe Posted 8 May 2010 , 5:08am
post #5 of 20

I'm sorry about what happened.... did u fridge your cakes before you torted them? specially with boxed cake since they are so soft u need to fridge them or even freeze a bot just to get them sturdy enough to tort and fill... then after u fill you should be fridging again maybe with some weight on top to let the cake "burp" any trapped air between the filling and the cake....


sweet-thing Posted 9 May 2010 , 1:26pm
post #6 of 20

I am so sorry this happened to you. I too am wondering about the wooden dowels. I am thinking that may have been the problem. I hope you got it all worked out and ended up with a beautiful cake! icon_smile.gif

indydebi Posted 9 May 2010 , 1:57pm
post #7 of 20

how did the cake turn out for the wedding yesterday?

Shalott Posted 10 May 2010 , 3:57am
post #8 of 20

I'm sorry that this happened to you and I hope it worked out in the end! A few things (and I'm by no means an expert, so this is just my opinion):

1) Did you add anything to your cake mixes to make them more dense? A torted cake-mix cake, especially one that has been filled with cream cheese frosting (VERY moist!) is a recipe for disaster (IMO). Cake mixes tend to be very light and fluffy -- lots of little air pockets. Chocolate cake and cream cheese icing left out on the counter could definitely result in orange syrup (check your cake mix box because the ingredients will probably include added colour).

2) The dowel thing confuses me like nothing else.

3) Where had you let the cakes sit? Were they completely cooled before torting and filling? Had you refrigerated or frozen them at all? I find that they hold together better if you let them get cold or freeze them.

I hope everything turned out for the best!

mamawrobin Posted 10 May 2010 , 4:52am
post #9 of 20

Curious to know how your cake turned out.

madgeowens Posted 10 May 2010 , 5:29am
post #10 of 20

I never divide into four/ I think thats too much frosting....I suppose that many do though....I hope everything turned out great for you...let us know

dalis4joe Posted 10 May 2010 , 10:53am
post #11 of 20

stopped by wondering how everyting turned out? hope all went well icon_smile.gif

Tclanton Posted 10 May 2010 , 4:36pm
post #12 of 20

Ug - the suspense is killing me. Wish her well wishes and hope she will give us an update.

iamcakin Posted 10 May 2010 , 5:50pm
post #13 of 20

Yep, wondering about the outcome... icon_cool.gif .

mamawrobin Posted 10 May 2010 , 7:13pm
post #14 of 20

Checking in once again icon_lol.gif Where are you somwhere?

sberryp Posted 23 May 2010 , 5:46pm
post #15 of 20

I am sure that it turned out great, but I am with everyone else I would love to see it. When you said that you cut it into fours did you mean 2 cakes sliced in half? If not I agree with another post that I have never sliced a cake into 4's.

KHalstead Posted 1 Jun 2010 , 1:11pm
post #16 of 20

I think the mistake was using straight cake mix........for the LIFE OF ME I can't get a straight box mix to cooperate......they always fall apart and there is always crumbs in my icing (I'm way too rough on cakes when I'm stacking and icing.....I need a dense sturdy cake lol)

indydebi Posted 1 Jun 2010 , 8:13pm
post #17 of 20

KH, I disagree. I use straight mixes all the time and never have a problem.

KayMc Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 7:58pm
post #18 of 20

Bumping to top to see how this all turned out! Hoping it went well.

jqorso Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 8:03pm
post #19 of 20

I agree with indydebi, I don't have problems with straight cake mix.

Oh and I'm curious about the cake too. icon_biggrin.gif

KHalstead Posted 8 Jun 2010 , 8:21pm
post #20 of 20

I'm just super rough with my cakes I guess, when I flip them off my cooling rack onto the cake boards, when I split/torte them and move the slices back and forth, and also when I ice them...when I try to do it with straight up cake mix per the directions, my cakes just crumble apart and I make a HUGE mess!

I'm definitely not delicate with them! lol I WISH I could make them work though, it would save me a TON of money in ingredients not having to add all the extras to them.

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