14" Cake Broke Into A Million Pieces!

Baking By LaurelC Updated 31 May 2011 , 5:12am by scp1127

LaurelC Posted 30 May 2011 , 2:56pm
post #1 of 16

Hi All,

I baked a 14" cake using 4 cake mixes. It took almost 1 1/2 hours to bake. I left it in the pan for a little more than 20 minutes. I tried turning it out onto racks, but when I did, it cracked into about 5 different pieces. There was no saving it! What did I do wrong?????

Thanks for your help.

Laurel

15 replies
SugarBakers05 Posted 30 May 2011 , 3:13pm
post #2 of 16

I'm thinking it didn't cool down long enough...

cad1951 Posted 30 May 2011 , 3:15pm
post #3 of 16

i think you probably left the cake to cool too long before trying to turning out onto racks. i take mine from the oven and time them for 10 min. when timer goes off, then i carefully turn cake out onto racks by placing parchment paper on top then one of the racks on top of parchment paper and holding on both sides in the center of the cake layer gently flip over. so far this has always worked for me, hope it works for you. also make sure the sides of the cake is not sticking to pan and be sure to coat pan with cake release or your choice before baking.

Ellie1985 Posted 30 May 2011 , 3:20pm
post #4 of 16

Did it have a dome??? The same thing happen to me and I think it was because of the dome. Now I cut off the dome if there is one before I flip it. Also I always flip it again onto the bottom. You know that is perfectly flat. Hope that helps.

Texas_Rose Posted 30 May 2011 , 3:25pm
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by cad1951

i think you probably left the cake to cool too long before trying to turning out onto racks. i take mine from the oven and time them for 10 min. when timer goes off, then i carefully turn cake out onto racks by placing parchment paper on top then one of the racks on top of parchment paper and holding on both sides in the center of the cake layer gently flip over. so far this has always worked for me, hope it works for you. also make sure the sides of the cake is not sticking to pan and be sure to coat pan with cake release or your choice before baking.




I agree with this...after 10 minutes a cake is ready to come out, but wait much longer and the cake will start to stick itself to the pan.

I also use two racks and flip the cake immediately onto the second rack so it's not sitting on its dome, if it has one.

LaurelC Posted 30 May 2011 , 5:12pm
post #6 of 16

Thanks for all your replies.

I left it for 20 minutes and it was still pretty hot when I took it out of the pan. It came out of the pan just fine. It was the dome that caused the crater, but how do I cut the dome off when the 'top' of the cake is lower than the sides of the pan? The DOME was as high as the sides, but not the sides of the cake. It also weighed a TON, so it was difficult to flip it (14" square, 3" deep).

I think I should also have used the wedding cake recipe rather than just use the mix as the box suggests.

This is the first time anything like this has happened to me and I've used this pan in the past....but it was several years ago and I don't remember what I did then. I feel bad about disappointing my grandson! <tears> Cupcakes are in the oven.

carmijok Posted 30 May 2011 , 5:39pm
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurelC

Thanks for all your replies.

I left it for 20 minutes and it was still pretty hot when I took it out of the pan. It came out of the pan just fine. It was the dome that caused the crater, but how do I cut the dome off when the 'top' of the cake is lower than the sides of the pan? The DOME was as high as the sides, but not the sides of the cake. It also weighed a TON, so it was difficult to flip it (14" square, 3" deep).

I think I should also have used the wedding cake recipe rather than just use the mix as the box suggests.

This is the first time anything like this has happened to me and I've used this pan in the past....but it was several years ago and I don't remember what I did then. I feel bad about disappointing my grandson! <tears> Cupcakes are in the oven.




I''m not sure about your question but I'll hazard it to mean that you didn't cut the dome off before you flipped it? Regardless of whether your cake has settled below the top of the pan and the dome above it, you still need to cut it off. Just take a long knife and run it horizontally across the top of your cake pan and take off as much as you can. Did you use any kind of core or flower nails to help stop the doming? Perhaps wrapping your cake pan with those cloth strips would help too. A 14" cake needs some kind of baking core...even if it's just an empty clean soup can (both ends open) to help bake the middle more evenly.

CWR41 Posted 30 May 2011 , 5:41pm
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurelC

It was the dome that caused the crater, but how do I cut the dome off when the 'top' of the cake is lower than the sides of the pan?




You could use the "push-down method" and press the dome down as soon as it comes out of the oven... nothing to cut off. If you leave the dome to level later, you definitely can't leave it flipped on the domed top--you need to flip it back to the flat bottom to prevent cracking.

Even large layers are easy to handle if you put the same size cardboard on the top of the cake while it's still in the pan, flip over, place another cardboard on the bottom of the cake and immediately flip back over to the flat bottom.

LaurelC Posted 30 May 2011 , 6:08pm
post #9 of 16

OK, I think I remember using the baking core a couple of years ago. Today, I used four flower nails, but not in the center of the pan.

Now that I think about it, using the baking core (which I didn't like, but oh well....) kept the cake from having a dome.

What happened was that I flipped the cake onto racks, then looked away for about 2 seconds. When I looked back, it had one giant crack, then three, then five. I THOUGHT I had cut the dome off, but evidently, not enough!

Thank y'all for all your help. I was so upset earlier at the thought of disappointing my grandson that I thought about giving up cake decorating all together. This is my first real DISASTER. icon_surprised.gif(

P.S. I don't usually get this discouraged this easily.

Lovin_Cakes30 Posted 30 May 2011 , 6:12pm
post #10 of 16

I use the "push down" method too. Plus I use make-shift bake even strips to prevent the dome. It seems to work well and I think it makes the cake more dense (all that dome is in the cake rather than cut off) and I think that makes it a bit stronger...well for me that seems to be the case anyway! Good luck next time, I am sure you will be fine! =)

EdieP Posted 30 May 2011 , 6:24pm
post #11 of 16

I always drop the pan on the counter several times to get the air out so there is not a dome. When I flip, especially a large cake, I put a large cake board on top of the cake/parchment paper and then flip.

MimiFix Posted 30 May 2011 , 7:01pm
post #12 of 16

When I bake any size cake, parchment paper lines the pan bottoms. This includes wedding cake tiers. For the largest tiers I also use pan spray on the paper. But I only make scratch cakes; maybe that's the difference.

I let the cakes cool to room temperature before removing from the pan. I then run a knife around the inside perimeter of the pan making sure to separate any cake stuck to the sides. I place a large board on top of the pan, and turn the pan with board upside down. The cakes always release. I peel the paper from the bottom, place another board against the cake bottom, and flip the cake right-side-up.

(The thought of turning a still-warm cake from the pan, scares me.)

atfirstbite Posted 31 May 2011 , 3:54am
post #13 of 16

I don't use cake mixes anymore but when I used to I would doctor them up a bit so I didn't run into this problem. When you just following the directions on the box, the cake is too light and cracks very easily. I would always add one more egg than the box calls for along with a package of a complimenting flavor of pudding and about a cup of sour cream. This resulted in a much more dense but still very moist and yummy cake.

carmijok Posted 31 May 2011 , 4:14am
post #14 of 16

I drop my pans a bunch, put flower nails in, and I still get a dome. Of course I overfill my pan so as to get the full 2" out of it. I expect to have a dome. I've pressed down the dome too, but that doesn't deflate it that much. I just trim the excess, mix it with buttercream and use it to make cake spackle should there be any mistakes or fills I have to do . Or freeze it and use it for cakeballs for the fam. No waste here! icon_biggrin.gif

cathyscakes Posted 31 May 2011 , 4:33am
post #15 of 16

I have had this happen with a moist chocolate cake and still was able to use the cake. I line the cake pan with parchment and have it come up the sides where you can pull it out of the pan. I then can assemble the cake back in the pan. I torted the cake into 1" layers and layer it in the pan with mousse fillings and ganache, layering until I have used all of the cake. I then put a weight on top of the cake, I used a tile and let it sit overnight in the frig. When you take the cake out of the pan, the cake is level and the sides are straight, then you can frost or pour ganache over it. It worked great, I don't worry so much now, I know I can save it. I wouldn't do this for a wedding cake would worry a little about it being stable, but it works great, the cake meshes together when compressed.

scp1127 Posted 31 May 2011 , 5:12am
post #16 of 16

I agree with CWR41. The cake board inside the pan before flipping makes it a very safe flip. You can put wax paper on top so you can reuse the board.

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