myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 2:58pm
post #1 of

Ok, so I am in the middle of culinary school and have just been hired to be the bakery person at a local college. Right now they use box mixes because they haven't had the skill level to execute scratch recipes. They are looking to me to be the person with that skill set. =/ Now, I don't have a problem baking from scratch at home or at school but to do large yields I'm afraid it'll be more difficult. Am I correct in this assumption? I can easily convert recipes, learned that a while back. But is it different at all for baking? Will just doubling or tripling a recipe still result in a successful recipe? Are there any books or cookbooks you can recommend that will make this any easier? Thanks for your help!

55 replies
btrsktch Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:22pm
post #2 of

Not to be a smart azz and all, but, shouldn't you be asking your instructors this question if you are in culinary school?

LisaPeps Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:22pm
post #3 of

You can't just double/triple/ quadruple batters. There is a rule, but I can't remember what it is called. Leah_s mentioned it in another post but I can't find it. You could PM her and ask her?

It's something to do with the ratios.

luddroth Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:27pm
post #4 of

Toba Garrett's book, The Well-Decorated Cake, has a recipe for "high volume" cake batter. It's mixed in a restaurant-sized giant mixer and does use different proportions. Most recipes will double ok, but beyond that, I don't think so...

myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:36pm
post #5 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by btrsktch

Not to be a smart azz and all, but, shouldn't you be asking your instructors this question if you are in culinary school?




Umm, first of all, thanks for not having anything helpful to add. What is that about anyway? icon_rolleyes.gif
Yeah, I sent my instructor an email. I am on break between semesters. I thought there may be professionals here that could recommend a book or two. Thanks to you who did offer helpful advice. I will look into that book. I didn't think you could convert baking recipes the same way. Much science involved in baking.

all4cake Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:45pm
post #6 of

I don't have a book to recommend. I have successfully (outcome of product was optimal) tripled and quadrupled cake recipes. I haven't tried any larger batches because, well, I just don't own a bowl that big. If I did, I would've tried larger batches. Mixing time was extended during particular stages (creaming the fat and sugar and again after the addition of the eggs) (mixing time was definitely less than it would've been mixing them separately though). Other than that, the mixing and measuring was the same. I didn't increase or decrease any ingredients. I've done it this way for as long as I've done cakes when multiple batches of the same flavor were needed. So, I wouldn't consider it a fluke.

MimiFix Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 3:50pm
post #7 of

Maybe I've just been lucky, but I've never had a problem scaling up recipes. I began baking professionally with a home baking license. I'd had no commercial baking experience and didn't know I was "not supposed to" so I just kept increasing the batch sizes of everything I made. My business eventually moved into a small retail shop so my home-sized recipes increased to fill a 30 qt. mixer. The only thing I would do to adjust recipes was slightly increase/decrease an ingredient to make measuring easier. For instance, if my scaled up recipe called for 3 3/4 tablespoons baking soda, I changed it to 1/4 cup baking soda. The largest mixer I've used was an 80 qt and ditto no problems scaling up. But using a larger mixer, you must be careful about scraping down the paddle and bowl to ensure all ingredients are incorporated.

hammer1 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:04pm
post #8 of

Not to be smart, but where is your culinary baking book, most f the recipes in those books yield large quantity. I just grabbed my book and the recipe for poundcake yields 8 cakes.. If your book doesn't make large quantities, best shop for a book that does. Scaling if faster than standard measuring. The book I have referenced is, professional baking by Wayne gisslen.

myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:10pm
post #9 of

I'm done

shanter Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:22pm

You could try these:

http://recipesforacrowd.com/cakes

http://cookingtipoftheday.blogspot.com/2009/05/large-quantity-recipe-antique-satin.html

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/6940/delicious-large-quantity-cake-mix

http://www.lindyscakes.co.uk/Blog/2009/07/27/how-to-i-change-a-cake-recipe-quanities/

http://www.razzledazzlerecipes.com/quantity/lemon-raspberry-wedding-cake.htm

There were others. I googled "large-quantity cake recipe."

Good luck! icon_smile.gif

hammer1 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:24pm

I really was trying to be helpful, you asked for a book to buy. I went and dug through A cabinet to find the book. I have been out of school for a while and it took about 15 minutes for me to find the book....I could have been doing my dishes , but I was trying to help, sorry you were so easily offended. Been on this website a while, and most people really are trying to help, we all take things wrong sometimes...

MimiFix Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:29pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by myheartsdesire

I'm done




What happened here? I thought all the responses were helpful.

tiptop57 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:36pm

Hmm what is in the water today?

myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 4:43pm

Not really offended as much as frustrated. I have been searching online all day and haven't came up with much. I thought maybe someone here might have some advice. Thanks for your advice. As far as my baking books, the only one I have from school has horrible recipes. I just recently switched from the culinary side to pastry. I am nervous about my new job. I know I can do it. I just wanted to go into it with a little more knowledge.
I'm not trying to start another thread that gets locked. It probably will turn into that though.... Anyway, I have seen several innocent questions be answered with some snobby, smart aleck answer and I am tired of it. I have way too much stress in my life to let something that is fun to me become horrible. By the I'm done thing, I mean just that. I'm finished with this site. Thank you to most of you. You have had wonderful advice the past few years and I am thankful. But I have got to simplify my life. Bye cake central.

btrsktch Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 5:37pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiptop57

Hmm what is in the water today?




I'm not sure!!!

jason_kraft Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 5:58pm

OP I would advise working on handling criticism better...if the relatively mild posts here are cause to abandon a useful resource, you will have a tough time in culinary school taking criticism from instructors, not to mention dealing with bosses in a high-volume and high-stress food production environment.

I doubt your new employer expects you to hit the ground running with industrial-scale scratch recipes, so as long as you set expectations regarding R&D time for perfecting the recipes you should be OK.

tiptop57 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:08pm

Good answer Jason_Kraft.......OP, I would also suggest calling your reputable local bakery for an informational interview. They may also be able to help you with resources. HTH

hammer1 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:14pm

well sAid Jason, my daughter was in a culinary class and no matter what they made the instructor always said not enough salt....one day in frustration she added twice the amount of salt, you guesses it, he still said it didn't have enough salt.....she also said it didn't matter whatnthey made no one ever got a positive response, just like all of us, she had to develop broad shoulders and believe in herself and not wait for the instructor to give positive reinforcement.

heysugar504 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:15pm

Jason, you always have great advice. Thanks for being awesome.

myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:16pm

These "relatively mild" posts are not what is causing me to leave. I am frustrated that it is easy to be misunderstood online. Yeah, I'm having a bad week. I'm dealing with stress in all areas of my life. But when I ask if anyone has any advice on where to start for making big recipes and are told go look in a book. Yeah, I know to do that. I've done that already. I asked on here for specific ideas from people who are in the business. If you don't have anything helpful to the original question to add then why add? It's just not helpful.
I don't believe I asked for criticism. Also, I handle myself very well at school. I am able to take their tough criticism just fine. That's the trouble with online things. One assumes to know everything about someone by one thing they post. If anyone reading this can tell me how to delete my account or at least stop getting emails that would be helpful.

Dizzymaiden Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:17pm

I wonder if a local bakery would share icon_lol.gif ...ok you never know!

I took a culinary course at a community college and the book they gave me had a section dedicated to measurements.

I wonder - what did the place do before you came on board?? Did they keep records..

I wish you all the luck! It is hard work physically and mentally. I envy all the great experience you will get out of this.

all4cake Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:26pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by myheartsdesire

Are there any books or cookbooks you can recommend that will make this any easier? Thanks for your help!




by going to profile on the left, you should be able to check no in the box beside getting email notifications. you can also unwatch everything in the my forum posts area and just lurk without having to delete your account. I'm not sure how to delete an account.

ETA: In all fairness, it can't be assumed, just 'cause one has a book, the owner knows all of its' contents. So, for someone to suggest you look in your school book for answers you seek is not a smartass suggestion to make.

MimiFix Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:33pm

Since the OP wants nothing more here, I would just like to add a note for Jason:

You're the best! CC is lucky to have you. Even when posters are not so nice you are still here, sweet as ever, adding helpful info. THANK YOU.

Baker_Rose Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:41pm

If you do a book search at amazon for "professional pastry chef" you will get a good assortment of baking books to start. I personally have the Bo Friberg ones and I do like them. I haven't touched my Pro Chef or my Pro Baking by Wayne Gisslen since I graduated Cul. School more than 15 years ago. Most commercial level books don't have a large assortment of recipes, and they are pretty basic to boot.

Any time I worked in commercial bakeries they always had recipes, I never had to start from scratch (sorry, no pun intended). However I did work for a caterer who loved the Betty Crocker recipes and we took those recipes, by measurements no less, and increased them 4x to 15x. Some of them needed tweeking with the flour amount, but I could never get people to use a SCALE there.

So, I am very good at going up and down with recipes, I have years behind me taking things from measurements to weight as well as weight to measurements etc. I would start with a recipe you like and go from there, that way you have a comfort level. Weigh all the ingredients and you will have an easier time taking it to the commercial level for work. Also, be sure you know the protein level of the flour at work!! Very important. Where I used to work things were always on the dry side and I had a chance to talk on the phone to the "flour guy" from the corporate office and the flour we used was actually bread flour!! So that is why we were having issues.

Good Luck!!

Tami icon_smile.gif

Lili5768 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:53pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft

OP I would advise working on handling criticism better...if the relatively mild posts here are cause to abandon a useful resource, you will have a tough time in culinary school taking criticism from instructors, not to mention dealing with bosses in a high-volume and high-stress food production environment.

I doubt your new employer expects you to hit the ground running with industrial-scale scratch recipes, so as long as you set expectations regarding R&D time for perfecting the recipes you should be OK.




Words of wisdom! Useful for ones entire life! thumbs_up.gif

gatorcake Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 6:55pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by LisaPeps

You can't just double/triple/ quadruple batters. There is a rule, but I can't remember what it is called. Leah_s mentioned it in another post but I can't find it. You could PM her and ask her?

It's something to do with the ratios.




The "rule" you are referring comes from the Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum and concerns the amount of leavening. However it not simply about scaling recipes. Rather it concerns the formulas in relation to the size of the pan.

Basically RLB claims that the larger the pan, the less leavening agent you should use if scaling a formula that is based on 6 or 9 in rounds. As you would need to scale the recipe to produce 12 in rounds, you, according to her, need to scale back the amount leavening agent.

That said I have doubled/tripled recipes and used larger pans and simply doubled or tripled the leavening agent without any problems. It may be the case for the formulas she uses however as others have noted it is far from a rule. If however after scaling you find your larger rounds collapsing, a good place to begin in diagnosing the problem would be the amount of leavening.

lvcakediva Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 7:41pm

My heartsdesire.... email me and I will help you. I have been in the bakery business my whole life and will try to help you with your questions.

stormrider Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 7:59pm

Here's a link to what's called a Baker's Percentage. It explains how to use ratios to get the proper percentage of each ingredient and calculate multiple batches of the same recipe:

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/professional/bakers-percentage.html

I believe Leah_s was the one who originally referenced the term bakers' percentage.

myheartsdesire Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 8:23pm

Alright, I don't know if I'm gone or not but I didn't want anyone to remember me as a pain. Sorry for losing it. Maybe I took it all wrong. Yeah, I agree asking my instructors and looking in textbooks are good ideas. And I do know my employer is not going to just throw me in and expect me to be perfect. He's a great chef and leader and I know he will guide me along. It's just that I am on a break from school, and I will not start working for another couple weeks. I'm broke and anxious to be working on something. This is a place where I can get helpful education when I can't find it elsewhere. Thanks for all the help. Sorry for upsetting the apple cart a little.

tiptop57 Posted 4 Aug 2011 , 8:29pm

OP icon_wink.gif Hope the good answers help. Good luck to you in your new endeavor!

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