Ayesha-nasir Posted 5 Nov 2012 , 11:32pm
post #1 of

My cakes are very doomed,.. ive heard of tapping the cake and i always do it. but now ive heard people use pins and towels.. which one is better?

I run a cake business locally so need help :) thank you.

 

P.S.  How do i get my cake edges sharp?

53 replies
lilmissbakesalot Posted 5 Nov 2012 , 11:42pm
post #2 of

Lower your oven temp and bake a little longer.  That should help.

 

I don't know what you use for recipes, but I never get domes.  I bake from scratch and set the oven at 325.

Ayesha-nasir Posted 5 Nov 2012 , 11:44pm
post #3 of

i bake at 350.. i will try 325 from now onwards, what is your baking time?

yortma Posted 6 Nov 2012 , 12:41am
post #4 of

I have tried a number of different recipes during the search for my favorites, and bottom line, some recipes dome more than others.  Finding the best recipe is the big first step.  To get the most level cake with the recipe that you have, I recommend lowering the temperature by 25 degrees, as recommended above. I also   recommend double walled pans or the bake even cake strips to slow down the baking of the outer edge. The longer it takes the outer edge to bake, the higher it will rise.  I also use the Ateco heat core nails (that look like flower nails but nice and flat)  in anything larger than a 9" to speed up the baking in the center.  They might even help with a 9" but I haven't tried it.   To get a perfectly flat final cake with sharp edges,  there is nothing better than the Agbay cake leveler.  Good luck and hope that helps.  

lilmissbakesalot Posted 6 Nov 2012 , 2:22am
post #5 of

I use regular old Fat Daddio pans (and a few Wilton Professional pans too) and have never once used a bake even strip or heating core/flower nail and I have never had issues with doming.  I don't think they are necessary.

 

Baking times vary per recipe, but an 8" cake would bake in about 35 minutes.  I usually start checking at 30 minutes or when it smells like it's time to check. 

kakeladi Posted 6 Nov 2012 , 2:32am
post #6 of

You can bake even as low as 300 degrees F :)  For any size pan that uses one cake mix batter try baking at 300 degrees for 15 minutes, then turn it up to 325 for an equal time.  Amount of time can vary depending on size of pan and your oven.  Use your nose to determin when a cake is done.  When you can smell that wonderful aroma (especially in another room)  the cake is done :)  

I have baked 1000s of cakes w/o using either bake even strips or a flower nail -- up to 16" rounds!  Just by using the temps mentioned above.  Sure it takes a bit longer, but produces a moist, tasty, flat cake!

Bomatebaker Posted 6 Nov 2012 , 7:52am
post #7 of

What temperature is your oven when you first put the batter in? For a flat cake the temperature for warming the oven should not be that much higher than the temperature you plan to bake the cake at.

 

I don’t follow any strict baking times/guidelines. I bake at a lower temperature for longer until I get the sweet scent of a baked cake. Then I start checking to make sure it is done but not overcooked. 

DreamConfections Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 5:17am
post #8 of

I bake at 325, I find it to take loger, but the cake raises slower.  I watch and test until they are done.  When I pull them out I take a towel and press them down until they are even.  Judge me how you will I use cake mixes and I get huge compliments on my cakes.

doramoreno62 Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 7:41am
post #9 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamConfections View Post

I bake at 325, I find it to take loger, but the cake raises slower.  I watch and test until they are done.  When I pull them out I take a towel and press them down until they are even.  Judge me how you will I use cake mixes and I get huge compliments on my cakes.

I do the exact same thing. I place a clean tea or hand towel on the cake while it's still in the pan and press down with a cookie sheet. Leave it for a couple of minutes. When you take the cake out of the pan it will have a flat top. But you have to do this as soon as the cake comes out of the oven or it won't work.

I also use mixes and I have more customers than I can handle at times.

lilmissbakesalot Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 4:34pm

I don't think anyone was even beginning to debate scratch vs. mix being the better option or judging anyone here.  The only reason I mentioned it was because results will vary greatly depending on recipes used and I wanted the OP to know where I was coming from just incase they did something different.

 

If your cakes dome up above the pan you can always trim it right in the pan too.  I don't like pressing on the cake before the structure sets as I feel it crates dense spots and can ruin the crumb I strive to get right everytime, but again, we bake totally different so what works for you won't necessarily work for me and vice versa.  :)

Marianna46 Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 4:43pm

Well, actually scratch vs. mix DOES come into question here, not as a judgmental thing (I do both, so I have no opinion on this), but because commercial cake mixes have a lot more leavening in them than scratch recipes do, so they tend to dome more. I've baked at lower temps and used bake-even strips and the press-down method for cakes coming out of the oven, and all of them help. Even so, I find I generally have to level most of my cakes to some degree, except for one scratch recipe that I have (basically the 1-2-3-4 cake) - not only does it not form a dome, it won't even rise. It's the No-Fail Sugar Cookie (the ones that won't change shape during baking) of the cake world!

lilmissbakesalot Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 4:45pm

Well that was my point.  That mentioning it wasn't about which was better, but because they behave differently. 

schmipsy Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 5:08pm

You can buy Bake Even Strips by Wilton - they are insulated strips that you soak in water and put around the outside of your pan.  You can pick them up at Michael's or order them on the Wilton website.  I use them for all my cakes and it keeps it from getting the dome on top of the cake.  Hope that helps. 

lilmissbakesalot Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 8:39pm

You can use old towels too.  Just cut them into strips, soak them in water, and use an aligator clip (binder clip... or whatever you want to call it) to keep it on.

 

Lowering your oven temp will help a lot though.

Maria46 Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 8:56pm

glad I saw this thread.  I'm going to also try to start baking at a lower temp.

leah_s Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 9:44pm

All of the above work (temp, strips) but for an absolutely level cake - AGBAY!

costumeczar Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 10:14pm

A[B][/B]You can bake at a lower temp then use the agbay too :-D

lilmissbakesalot Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 10:39pm

Yeah, but why waste all of that money on the Agbay when a knife will do it just fine.  I mean the Agbay is cool and all, but so pricy for something that has one use.  If your cake domes above the pan lip you can just pop it back in the pan and use the pan as your guide and trim it.

 

Nothing against the Agbay, but I just couldn't justify the cost for a knife with feet when you can hold a knife (with no feet) and do the same thing.

ApplegumPam Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 11:11pm

I think to compare the Agbay to a knife with legs is a bit too simplistic.

I managed with a knife for many years and I thought I was happy with the job I did.

 

BUT I did buy the double bladed Agbay a couple of years ago after hearing so many good things about it. I paid to get it shipped to Australia (when the Aussie dollar wasnt quite so good)

Yes it was a substantial investment - but I have NEVER regretted it - and I have to say it does a much better job than my knife ever did.

 

I am yet to find anybody that has an Agbay that has anything negative to say about them.

 

Not saying that an Agbay is the ONLY answer to getting a flat cake.  The first steps I would suggest are what has been offered above

  • lower oven temp
  • baking wraps around the outside of the cake
  • an alfoil tent over the top
  • and an odd but useful tip.....  give the tin a tilt from side to side with the batter in before you do all the wrapping - it goes up the sides a little and somehow helps the batter to rise more evenly on the sides
leah_s Posted 9 Nov 2012 , 11:29pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilmissbakesalot View Post

Yeah, but why waste all of that money on the Agbay when a knife will do it just fine.  I mean the Agbay is cool and all, but so pricy for something that has one use.  If your cake domes above the pan lip you can just pop it back in the pan and use the pan as your guide and trim it.

 

Nothing against the Agbay, but I just couldn't justify the cost for a knife with feet when you can hold a knife (with no feet) and do the same thing.


All I can say is, if you don't own an Agbay you just can't understand or appreciate it's total wonderfulness.  I have all three.

costumeczar Posted 10 Nov 2012 , 12:11am

I, too, vote thumbs up on the Agbay over a knife. I used a bread knife to level my cakes before I got the Agbay, but there's absolutely no comparison once you use the leveller.

denetteb Posted 10 Nov 2012 , 1:45am

I am sure the Agbay is fabulous, but for myself (a hobbyist) it isn't an option and just not  necessary.   I have found baking at 325, using a flower nail and homemade strips gives me a flat cake every time.  No leveling needed, no cake going to waste (or my waist).  Maybe I don't need to do all three but it works for me and only takes a few minutes.
 

lilmissbakesalot Posted 10 Nov 2012 , 6:05pm

I'm sure you all can justify spending the money in any way you want, but for me... good knife skills are paramount and for $25 you can get a nice long knife and do just fine.  You can get on with your business or hobby perfectly fine without an Agbay.  I have used one and it didn't make me want to buy one.  It truly is, at it's very basic level, a knife with feet.  I get how it works and that it is great if you choose to go that way, but a necessity??  Far from it.

DreamConfections Posted 10 Nov 2012 , 8:16pm

I was just adding that I use mixes for info to my whole process.  Sometimes my words come off wrong.  Lol.  I used to cut the top off of my cakes to even them out but since I started using the owel method I have been getting tons of compliments on my cakes.  I heard best chocolate cake ever.  From what I have read about that is that the cake is more dense like pound cake.  It saves so much time from cutting and you aren't wasting cake.  Of course, my husband and kids hate that they don't get to enjoy the scraps anymore.  :)

cakeyouverymuch Posted 10 Nov 2012 , 9:14pm
Quote:

Originally Posted by ApplegumPam View Post
 

 

  • and an odd but useful tip.....  give the tin a tilt from side to side with the batter in before you do all the wrapping - it goes up the sides a little and somehow helps the batter to rise more evenly on the sides

 

That makes all kinds of sense, and I'm definitely going to try that nest time I bake.  In fact, I may just bake something so I can try it!  Thank you!

lilmissbakesalot Posted 11 Nov 2012 , 2:05am

I don't even think to say it to anyone because it is second nature to me, but I totally coat the sides of the pan with batter too... especially with a thinner batter.

jenmat Posted 15 Nov 2012 , 1:32am

I also have 3" pans, I bake 4 layers per cake, and then bake at 320ish.

They bake quicker because of less batter in each pan, and they come out without any "crusting." 

kazita Posted 15 Nov 2012 , 2:11am

AI just cut the dome while the cake is still in the pan, that's my testing cake to make sure the cake taste good.

MoniCakes7818 Posted 15 Nov 2012 , 5:28pm

Ok so i've always just used a knife to level my cakes. I've also never heard of an AGBAY. I googled it and seriously that would make  life a lot easier. i think this is definately something to invest in. thumbs_up.gif

ddaigle Posted 15 Nov 2012 , 5:31pm

I like domes!    I get a cake snack or use for cake balls!icon_biggrin.gif

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