Perfect Cake

Decorating By bakeforfun21 Updated 1 Jan 2015 , 6:41pm by Cupcakegirl2005

bakeforfun21 Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 7:50pm
post #1 of 29

I look at the cakes on wilton books and their websites and they are perfect. No dome in the middle and a gorgeous golden color. How do I accomplish that? Like this. It's perfect looking. Also, I don't think my cakes are 4 inches high when I tort and fill them. Any tips on accomplishing that as well. Basic Yellow Cake

28 replies
Claire138 Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 8:55pm
post #2 of 29

I don't know how much experience you have but a lot of it comes with practice, practice and more practice. There are also a few "tricks" of the trade you can use.  A lot of people swear by those cake things that you wrap around the cake tin (name escapes me at the minute), I actually found them more of a pain then anything else so don't use them.

For a large cake you could use a cake heating core (I use these for anything over 10").

However I also like having the top dome somewhat bc then I can use my Agbay (one of my best buys ever) and use the top for cake pops or just to eat...... the latter happens more than the former:wink:

MimiFix Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 10:41pm
post #3 of 29

A team of food stylists are employed to achieve visual perfection.

 

Cakes appear perfect in the same way that models and well-known personalities are flawless. 

MBalaska Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 11:06pm
post #4 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by MimiFix 
 

A team of food stylists are employed to achieve visual perfection.

 

Cakes appear perfect in the same way that models and well-known personalities are flawless. 

 

Thank You @MimiFix for bringing those facts to light.  If you've ever watched the food stylists prepare food for advertising, you'll see them using paint and plaster and all kinds of weird things to make food look like a dream. 

videominx Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 11:19pm
post #5 of 29

I work on a lot of food shoots, sometimes as a food stylist.  The latest "weird" thing was using motor oil added to melted chocolate to make it flow smoothly.  Had to put poison signs and skulls all over the melting pots so no one would be tempted to dip their fingers into it.

kakeladi Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 11:46pm
post #6 of 29

The info already given is great to remember.

I want to say I see nothing wrong the the pictured cake you posted.

If your cakes are doming then you need to turn the oven down.  I have always baked at 300 degrees (length depends on how big the pan is, but for a one cake mix pan about 20 minutes) then turn it up to 325 for an equal amount of time or until you can smell that wonderful aroma in the next room :)

Check out the wonderful *original* WASC recipe for a great cake.  http://www.cakecentral.com/t/584319/the-original-wasc-cake-recipe

This works for most people, but it does depend on your stove - every one bakes differently so you might have to do some minor adjustments to the time &/or temp.

MimiFix Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 12:28am
post #7 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by videominx 

 

... Had to put poison signs and skulls all over the melting pots so no one would be tempted to dip their fingers into it.

 

I hope those signs worked better than the ones used for wet paint.

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 4:51am
post #8 of 29

AI'm having luck baking at 325 and using baking strips Hers a picture of a recent cake I did using Marsha Winbkecker French vanilla sour cream cake[ATTACHMENT=2060]image.jpg (1,182k. jpg file)[/ATTACHMENT]

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 4:54am
post #9 of 29

AI also use 2 wilton 3 inch pans, I like the way they bake, I hope this helps

Claire138 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 6:55am
post #10 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by MimiFix 
 

A team of food stylists are employed to achieve visual perfection.

 

Cakes appear perfect in the same way that models and well-known personalities are flawless. 

 

On reflection, probably more of this than of my previous post!

MBalaska Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 7:32am
post #11 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cupcakegirl2005 

I'm having luck baking at 325 and using baking strips
Hers a picture of a recent cake I did using Marsha Winbkecker French vanilla sour cream cake 

 

that looks very nice indeed!

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:16pm
post #12 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by MimiFix 
 

A team of food stylists are employed to achieve visual perfection.

 

Cakes appear perfect in the same way that models and well-known personalities are flawless. 

I hadn't thought of that. 

Relznik Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:23pm
post #13 of 29

Is the picture of your cake or a pic from the book?

 

 

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:25pm
post #14 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Relznik 
 

Is the picture of your cake or a pic from the book?

 

 

 

This one is from the wilton website. I haven't taken any pictures of my naked cakes. 

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:26pm
post #15 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cupcakegirl2005 

I also use 2 wilton 3 inch pans, I like the way they bake, I hope this helps

I use two inexpensive cake pans I found at walmart. Could that be the problem?

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:43pm
post #16 of 29

AIt may, a good pan makes a difference , also as far as rising make sure you flour the pan, I read the flour helps the cake when baking to rise, it helps it adhere to the pan,, I use bakers joy spray

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:58pm
post #17 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cupcakegirl2005 

It may, a good pan makes a difference , also as far as rising make sure you flour the pan, I read the flour helps the cake when baking to rise, it helps it adhere to the pan,, I use bakers joy spray

I have never floured my pans either. I'm going to bake a cake tonight. And I will try to flour the pan and lower the heat.

7189de Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 4:08pm
post #18 of 29

I use two inexpensive cake pans I found at walmart. Could that be the problem?

Shouldn't be the pan (I did notice last week(at Wlmart) one seemed a smaller than 2 inches) I use their cheap 9inch all the time. I swear by 3 inch deep pans.

Ya know somewhere I saw  cookies using left over cake.

yortma Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 4:13pm
post #19 of 29

It looks to me as if the "perfect" cake may have been turned upside down, which would give you the perfectly flat "top", and even browned color. The original top may even have been leveled before turning over.  I don't worry much about how level the top is or how perfectly even the color is, because I virtually always tort and level anyway, and then cover with buttercream/fondant/ganache.  How it tastes is the most important thing!  If your tiers are not the height you want, one option of course is to make more batter and fill your pans more deeply. You can also add more layers of cake.   I like to make  3 or 4 layers of cake, because I like getting more filling (and you can use more than one flavor) and it looks so pretty when cut.   HTH!

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 4:24pm
post #20 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by yortma 
 

It looks to me as if the "perfect" cake may have been turned upside down, which would give you the perfectly flat "top", and even browned color. The original top may even have been leveled before turning over.  I don't worry much about how level the top is or how perfectly even the color is, because I virtually always tort and level anyway, and then cover with buttercream/fondant/ganache.  How it tastes is the most important thing!  If your tiers are not the height you want, one option of course is to make more batter and fill your pans more deeply. You can also add more layers of cake.   I like to make  3 or 4 layers of cake, because I like getting more filling (and you can use more than one flavor) and it looks so pretty when cut.   HTH!

I hadn't thought of the flip upside down thing either. There is so much I hadn't considered!! :-o

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 5:09pm
post #21 of 29

AGood luck on the cake tonight

Relznik Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 7:03pm
post #22 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by bakeforfun21 
 

This one is from the wilton website. I haven't taken any pictures of my naked cakes. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by yortma 
 

It looks to me as if the "perfect" cake may have been turned upside down, which would give you the perfectly flat "top", and even browned color. The original top may even have been leveled before turning over. 

 

That's exactly what I thought, yortma, which is why I asked the original poster about the cake pic!!

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 7:33pm
post #23 of 29

AHere is a YouTube video it's about 50 mintues long, but it has a lot of basic good tips


bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 7:47pm
post #24 of 29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cupcakegirl2005 

Here is a YouTube video it's about 50 mintues long, but it has a lot of basic good tips


Awesome. Thank you

Apti Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 10:07pm
post #25 of 29

bakeforfun21~~In 2010 I started the addictive hobby of cake decorating.  In the beginning there were a gazillion questions (just like yours).   I put together a long thread with information on these "newbie" questions. 

 

Hard learned newbie advice on level cakes and smooth buttercream:

http://www.wilton.com/forums/messageview.cfm?catid=13&threadid=142476&FTVAR_MSGDBTABLE=

 

How-To tutorials/videos for Cake Decorators

http://www.wilton.com/forums/messageview.cfm?catid=8&threadid=160184

 

To answer your specific questions: "I look at the cakes on wilton books and their websites and they are perfect. No dome in the middle and a gorgeous golden color. How do I accomplish that? Like this. It's perfect looking. Also, I don't think my cakes are 4 inches high when I tort and fill them. Any tips on accomplishing that as well."

 

HOW TO GET A LEVEL CAKE:

Buy Wilton Bake Even strips. Small package for 8” cakes, large package for larger cakes.
Buy Wilton METAL (not plastic) flower nails, size # 7 (the largest one) Purchase 2 or 3
Buy a roll of parchment paper

Buy a can of Baking Spray or make your own Pan Release

 

PREPARE PANS Use Wilton ‘Cake Release’ or baking sprays: Baker's Joy, Pam Baking Spray.  (You can also make your own pan release (recipe: 1 cup Crisco, ¾ cup oil, 1 cup flour. Blend--store in fridge). Cut a piece of parchment paper the same size as the inside of the cake pan. Lightly coat bottom of pan with pan release, place parchment paper in pan. Brush pan release generously in pan on top of parchment and on sides. Wet and secure Bake Even strips to outside of pans. IF you are doing cakes larger than 10” or 9x13”, you should also put pan release on a flower nail and place with flat side down in the center of the pan, then pour in batter.
PREPARE OVEN Preheat and bake at 325 degrees, NOT 350. Cakes will take longer to cook, but will bake more evenly.
If you still have a dome after cake is done: the very second you remove from the oven, place a folded tea towel over dome and press down gently until it is level with edges. This will not harm texture or taste in any way.   (Another method:  While the cut is still in the pan, use a long knife to cut off the "dome".)
Important: When cake is removed from oven, remove Bake Even strips, set timer for 10-20 minutes. Leave cakes in pan until it is just barely warm to touch, turn cakes over onto a cooling rack. If you remove too soon, it will crack. If you remove too late, it will stick to the now hardened pan release and leave chunks in pan.  If the dome (if there is one) hasn't been taken care of, the cake may split right down the middle when turned out of the pan.

 

Here are some more posts with photos:

Bake Even Strips and Flower Nail(s) on larger cakes

http://www.wilton.com/forums/messageview.cfm?catid=8&threadid=148262&FTVAR_MSGDBTABLE=

 

You are welcome to view my progress since my early 2010 efforts at:

https://christinascakes.shutterfly.com/

 

Please send me a PM if you have ANY questions!  So many people on CakeCentral and Wilton forums helped me in the beginning that it is an honor and a pleasure to return the favor!

Apti Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 10:14pm
post #26 of 29

p.s.  Here's some more information on the Wilton Bake Even Strips:

Bake Even strips are a wonderful, cost-effective product.

 

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0000DDXL8/?tag=cakecentral-20

 

I wet my strips thoroughly, then using my thumb and fingers, run them lightly down the strip to press out the excess water. The Bake Even strips are completely dry when I remove them from the oven. I think that the Wilton strips provide just the correct amount of "wet/coolness" around the edges of the pans to have the sides bake perfectly along with the center when used correctly.

When you wrap the Bake Even strips around a pan, make sure they don't overlap more than 4-6".

 

Regarding your question about 4" high tiers~~~Whole new subject.  Lots and lots and lots of possible answers. I'd suggest you concentrate on getting a lovely, flat cake first, then start working on the other aspects.

bakeforfun21 Posted 1 Jan 2015 , 3:39pm
post #27 of 29


Thank you all so much!!!! This is exactly what I was trying to accomplish. I have them resting for fifteen minutes now and I will upload a new picture when I take them out of the pan.

cakebaby2 Posted 1 Jan 2015 , 6:30pm
post #28 of 29

Way to go girl! They look yummy x

Cupcakegirl2005 Posted 1 Jan 2015 , 6:41pm
post #29 of 29

AGood job

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%