Dr_Hfuhruhurr Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 4:31pm
post #1 of

Hypothetical: 

 

Standard yellow scratch cake, covered in typical american buttercream (butter, powdered sugar, about 6tbs of heavy cream).  In freezer.

 

How long before I have to pitch it? 

 

I've seen many posts on here saying a year or more is fine for cakes.  But then I've also seen posts that say only a couple months for buttercream.  So I'm curious what the popular wisdom is, and where the disconnect is.

 

Thanks!

30 replies
MimiFix Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 5:51pm
post #2 of

It depends upon your freezer. A self-defrost freezer goes through a freeze-thaw-freeze cycle so there's no ice build-up. That means food in your freezer also goes through the same cycle. I wouldn't leave a cake in there for more than a couple weeks. But in a manual defrost freezer, where the temp remains constant, a year is reasonable. 

Dr_Hfuhruhurr Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:06pm
post #3 of

Very interesting, thanks.  Now I will have to locate an online forum about freezers so that I can ask how to determine what kind of freezer I have.  icon_biggrin.gif
 

MimiFix Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:14pm
post #4 of

Dr, do you have any ice build up? Or is your freezer ice-free?

carmijok Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:23pm
post #5 of

Honestly if it's been in there that long I would only defrost and use for personal use.  It's probably OK but I wouldn't want to sell it to anyone.  I once had a frosted cupcake wrapped and frozen for over a year in my freezer. (I'd forgotten about it).  I let it thaw and tasted it and it was delicious.  No 'freezer taste' and it was very moist and the buttercream was great.  But again...for personal use only. 
 

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 6:29pm
post #6 of

I have both kinds of freezers, I use my frosty freezer for long term storage, and have had my sample cakes frozen for 7 months, and my filling for 3 months. I just served it last week and got the order, with much praise of the flavor and texture.

 

In my frost free freezer, I typically only freeze for about 2-4 days for cakes, but a couple months wouldn't be unheard of.

Dr_Hfuhruhurr Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 7:21pm
post #7 of

Mimi, no ice, so I guess it's self-defrosting. 

 

Such a shame.  We saved a large section of our Christmas cake (so about 7 months old), thinking we'd break it out and eat it at some point.  Guess I'll just toss it out--I'd rather bake a new cake than get sick trying to eat an old one.
 

Sassyzan Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 7:27pm
post #8 of

AIt's not going to make you sick. It just might taste freezer-burned.

Annabakescakes Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 7:31pm
post #9 of

Definitely won't make you sick, just thaw it out and taste it. If it tastes good, eat it. How was it wrapped?

Dr_Hfuhruhurr Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 9:23pm

It was triple wrapped in saranwrap, then twice in foil.  I appreciate all these helpful comments! 
 

denetteb Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 10:58pm

Thaw it and give it a try.  It will most likely be fine.  Years ago my dear Grandma would cut a piece of cake for me for events I couldn't be at.  She would put them in a cool whip container and freeze it.  She would cut the best piece, the one with all the flowers.  Next time I would be home it would be defrosting in the fridge for me.  They were always the best.  Partly because of the love, of course.  Occasionally a container would be forgotten and sit in the freezer even longer so it could be many months until I had them.  They were always good.

MimiFix Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 11:25pm

Sweet story, denetteb!

dawnybird Posted 9 Jul 2013 , 11:36pm

I wouldn't hesitate to eat it. (Providing it still tastes good to you)  Definitely won't harm you.
 

Annabakescakes Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 12:55am

AWhen I was 13 my mom got married and some terrible homebaker make a monstrosity, complete with pilliars, purple icing and the "Walmart squiggle " that was suppossed to look like roses...it was dry and tasteless and greasy and ugly" so of course my step father kept the top tier, lol! Well, thy didn't wrap it at all, for a whole year. When he took it out of the freezer, it smelled like fish, cardboard, and freezer burn. You could smell it from across the room and after he thawed it, he actually ate some of it. My mother and I were horrified, but it didn't kill him.

MimiFix Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 1:14am
Quote:
Originally Posted by Annabakescakes 

My mother and I were horrified, but it didn't kill him.

 

"What doesn't kill us makes us stronger."  icon_wink.gif

denetteb Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 3:24am

I made a tiered cake for my parents 25th anniversary.  My Grandma (same one from above story) had kept my parents wedding cake all those years, through multiple moves as my Grandpa worked building roads.  It was probably a 10 inch square.  Grandma moved it from home to home, freezer to freezer.  25 years later some of the decor and blue roses had fallen off but it looked surprisingly good.  It was, however, rock hard.  I have pictures from the anniv party with one of my parents holding a knife to my cake and the other holding an ax above the wedding cake.

Annabakescakes Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 3:46am
Quote:
Originally Posted by denetteb 

I made a tiered cake for my parents 25th anniversary.  My Grandma (same one from above story) had kept my parents wedding cake all those years, through multiple moves as my Grandpa worked building roads.  It was probably a 10 inch square.  Grandma moved it from home to home, freezer to freezer.  25 years later some of the decor and blue roses had fallen off but it looked surprisingly good.  It was, however, rock hard.  I have pictures from the anniv party with one of my parents holding a knife to my cake and the other holding an ax above the wedding cake.

That is hilarious. And I love your grandma's sweet, sentimental heart. :-)

denetteb Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 3:57am

She was  a great  lady, total unconditional love.  I miss her.  One last Grandma story (non cake this time.)  From the first time I moved away from home she started writing me a letter each week.  She would usually mail it on Wednesday and I would usually get it on Saturday.  She did this every week unless I was visiting her.  Until she mentally/physically couldn't do it shortly before she died she wrote me every week.  For more than 20 years!

kakeladi Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 4:13am

Don't any of you remember that the top tier is supposed to be saved for the 1st anniversary?  Dear Abby &/or Ann Landers (or maybe it was some cake decorator who answered the ? later but I do remember someone) once gave instructions on how to prepare/wrap in order to save it.

As I remember you were told to put the cake - completely UNwrapped on a cookie sheet & fz it overnight (or some amount of time like that) until it was hard, then wrap it in aluminum foil.  Since then we have learned it needs to be wrapped in plastic/cling wrap well before being put in foil, then into a cake box which is put into a plastic bag well sealed. 

SOOOOOOO properly wrapped it can last for a year.

My DD moved out of the country right after her wedding.  We kept her top tier in our fzr; the fzr broke down at least twice in the approx. 1 1/2 yrs before they returned.  They still tried it......the icing (or was it the cake) was slightly sour but they ate a couple bites and didn't die.

Godot Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 4:33am

What do you mean 'supposed to be saved for the first anniversary?'  Are the anniversary police going to show up on the doorstep of folks who haven't saved it? I mean, seeing that they're 'supposed to' and all.......

 

Seriously now - who wants to eat food that has been in the freezer for a YEAR?

 

This is gross. When I become dictator of the world I will abolish this tradition.

 

I sometimes have couples ask if they should save that tier and I always say no - order a fresh cake instead.

Godot Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 4:33am

What do you mean 'supposed to be saved for the first anniversary?'  Are the anniversary police going to show up on the doorstep of folks who haven't saved it? I mean, seeing that they're 'supposed to' and all.......

 

Seriously now - who wants to eat food that has been in the freezer for a YEAR?

 

This is gross. When I become dictator of the world I will abolish this tradition.

 

I sometimes have couples ask if they should save that tier and I always say no - order a fresh cake instead.

Lucky6 Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 4:41am

A

Original message sent by Godot

What do you mean [I]'supposed to be saved for the first anniversary?' [/I] Are the anniversary police going to show up on the doorstep of folks who haven't saved it? I mean, seeing that they're [I]'supposed to'[/I] and all.......

Seriously now - who wants to eat food that has been in the freezer for a YEAR?

This is gross. When I become dictator of the world I will abolish this tradition. Funnnnnyyyy :-D

I sometimes have couples ask if they should save that tier and I always say no - order a fresh cake instead.

I love coming to CC after a long day at work... Always very entertaining really:-D:-D:-D

Godot Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 4:55am

icon_evil.gif

vgcea Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 5:01am

AI believe it's the remnant of an old English tradition when wedding cakes were almost always fruit cakes-- which are designed to last for a long time and still taste good. I don't think a year-old butter cake tastes as good as a year-old brandy-aged traditional English fruit cake (NOT the bricks sold at Walmart in December :D)

Annabakescakes Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 5:15am
Quote:
Originally Posted by denetteb 

She was  a great  lady, total unconditional love.  I miss her.  One last Grandma story (non cake this time.)  From the first time I moved away from home she started writing me a letter each week.  She would usually mail it on Wednesday and I would usually get it on Saturday.  She did this every week unless I was visiting her.  Until she mentally/physically couldn't do it shortly before she died she wrote me every week.  For more than 20 years!

Awww! I have written and mailed about 4  letters in my life. That is so amazing and sweet. Such dedication!

de_montsoreau Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 12:33pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by denetteb 

She was  a great  lady, total unconditional love.  I miss her.  One last Grandma story (non cake this time.)  From the first time I moved away from home she started writing me a letter each week.  She would usually mail it on Wednesday and I would usually get it on Saturday.  She did this every week unless I was visiting her.  Until she mentally/physically couldn't do it shortly before she died she wrote me every week.  For more than 20 years!


Sorry, have to chime in on the OT here, as this reminds me so much of my grandparents :-)

 

When I was living out of the country for a little more than three years (this was in the early 90ies so before Internet was widely available) my grandparents used to write me a monthly letter. They had the appropriate stationary with the month and some nice seasonsal flowers printed on it. My Grandma did the front page of the letter, my grandpa the back page. I still have them all and treasure them dearly. It was such a joy to receive their letter at the beginning of each month!

kakeladi Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:13am

Oh come on.it's been an *American* tridition for well over 75 yrs that I know of.  Just because it's not from over the pond doesn't make it a horrible thing! :(

scrumdiddlycakes Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:46am

My mom secretly froze 2 of our wedding cupcakes til our first anniversary, lol, we refused to eat them, but she got to take her picture and put it in the album next to her and dad with their year old fruitcake.

I'm sure I'll be equally as nutty and do the same to my daughters :)

 

I offer discounted anniversary cakes to couples, I make them to match the top tier of the cake I originally made them. It's quite a strong tradition around here still, but not always a tasty one, so this is a nice alternative.

WickedGoodies Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 5:48pm

I've worked in commercial bakeries with subzero freezers dedicated to just cakes and let me tell ya, those cakes last for over a year and you never know the difference. However, when it comes to a home freezer, it's a different story. The temperature doesn't regulate as well in those and when frozen cakes commingle with frozen meat, fish, and other savory foods, they absorb unwanted flavors. So I'd say in a home fridge, stick to 2 months or less but in a proper bakery fridge, 6+ months easy. To extend the life of a frozen cake, seal it first in plastic wrap then put it in tupperware. 

Dr_Hfuhruhurr Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 2:46pm

In case anyone is curious, we did break out the cake and eat it.  It was delicious and tasted the same as the day it was made.  The cake seemed denser, but it still tasted great.  Thanks to everyone for the comments!

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