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I have bitten off a lot...help.

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

I work with a group of 7-12th grade girls in American Heritage Girls (a scouting organization).  The girls decided they wanted to complete the cake decorating badge.  Of course, I thought, no biggie! HA!

 

Well...all of us are used to baking boxed cakes (I've made my own frosting for years, tried my hand at MMF...bake bread from scratch), BUT requirements include making a tiered cake of at least 3 tiers.  

 

I'm reading everything I can find on cakes, tried this "French Vanilla Sour Cream Cake" recipe, and it came out tasting a bit corny (I used bleached AP flour, the instructions said to use AP, too...I read that bleached is better than unbleached for cakes).  So...it's this dense, heavy cake (which we kind of needed, because we had to carve the cake into letters...we did a 1/2 sheet to make the A & H and a 14" round to make the G).  

 

The cake decorations LOOKED great, but taste wasn't up to the decorations.  

 

Back to our 3-tier cake (14", 10" and 6" round), two of the girls are leaning towards topsy-turvy (hahaha).  We're serving 150 people this cake (I'll have to make two half-sheets to to ensure there is enough dessert).  I *need* it to taste AWESOME.

 

I'm not afraid of trying things (obviously)...but I don't have weeks to try out a half dozen recipes.  Our audience prefers the store-bought fluffy cakes.  I need fluffy, yummy, to-die-for cakes that can be made from scratch, stand up to the needs of a topsy-turvy cutting, and not fall.

 

It's a tall-order (hehe)...and I'm learning a lot here.  But, with only 3 weeks to go, I'm on a steep learning curve and I have to lead these girls to an amazing final project.

 

Thank you for your assistance with time-tested, mouthwatering directions!

 

Lisa

post #2 of 16

I would probably use WASC cake, maybe use extra a vanilla and skip the almond extract. I would probably stay away from the topsy turvy for this one and just do a three tiered stacked cake. Good Luck!!!

post #3 of 16

i agree with the PP. WASC is a great choice, just change out the almond flavoring with vanilla.  its a dense, but light cake, commonly used for wedding cakes.  i'd also recommend sticking to a traditional shaped three tier and skipping the topsy turvy. it will still look lovely and you won't be as stressed out :)  but whatever  you choose, good luck!!

post #4 of 16

If you do decide to do a topsy- turvy cake you better do a practice cake beforehand to make sure you can do it. You also need to make sure that the cakes are leveled off perfectly especially for this kind of cake.  If your trial run does not work then you can try for a normal 3 tier cake. Good luck, I am sure you can do it!!! Keep your faith and take it one step at a time!!

post #5 of 16

i pm'd you one

 

very reliable

 

sounds like a big fun ordeal

 

icon_biggrin.gif

one baker's 'never ever do' is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
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one baker's 'never ever do' is the next baker's 'i swear by this'
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post #6 of 16

The OP says she needs a scratch cake, so WASC will not do.  My go-to place for new recipes is www.allrecipes.com.  You find the one with a ton of reviews and still 4+ stars and you're golden!  If that many people from all experience levels can try and like it that much, then so can you.

post #7 of 16
Shirley corriher's magnificent moist golden cake, creaming method
Try finding BakeWise in the library. The scouts can learn some food science while they're at it! Or here is the recipe:
http://shaunasever.com/2009/06/and-please-call-me-shirley.html
post #8 of 16

 I don't have a tried and true cake recipe to share but you might narrow it down to a chocolate cake.  It seems those are easier to get a cake you are happy with than a white or yellow one.  So many people find their scratch white or yellow are dry or something but choc seems to be easier to get a good one.
 

post #9 of 16

^^^ truth.

post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 

Sorry, I'm pretty new at this... not sure what a WASC cake is, but I'll look it up.

 

I spent about an hour in a local bakery supply store...gentleman there didn't seem inclined to help at all (didn't want to even order a bag of cake flour for me...).  It was so discouraging.  A 5# tub of Satin Ice was $36!  I told him what this was for...that I'm not in any type of cake-decorating business, it's just a special event and a final project to earn a badge, nope.  Told him I could give him a copy of our NP-ID #...still no help.  Basically said, any old recipe out of a cook book will do.  Ummm, if that were true, the cake I served on Monday night would have been ah-maaz-ing.  Needless to say, I don't think I'll be going back there for any kind of help (or to purchase supplies).  

 

Thank you for the suggestions so far...and those who have posted/e-mailed me recipes!  I think I'll pass them to the girls and see if they want to make a cake for a tasting party during our next meeting...lol

 

Now...I've got to research MMF, because whatever I did last time did NOT work.

post #11 of 16

WASC is a doctored mix cake.  No it won't do.

 

For cake recipes and tutorials, check out the recipes section of King Arthur Flour.  Use their "classic yellow" cake recipe that has sour cream or yogurt plus the AP flour.  Get the girls to sit down and compare several recipes before they start baking. Get them to find and read the Wilton online info on building tiered cakes.  Your girls should write up a paper explaining their cake recipe trials and results as part of their badge. 

 

You may need to explain to the audience that "practise makes perfect" and that these are not professional bakers.  Their final tiered cake may also benefit from some flavoured syrup added to each layer as they are assembling--that will get the "awesome" reaction from the party. Neat simple decorations better than fancy flops.  Maybe have them make a 2 tier "regular" and a 2 tier carved, instead of a 3 tier carved.

 

Fondant: look up any Wilton Celebrate! book from the 1970's (public library may have it) or from ebay online.  Their "rolled fondant" recipe with powdered sugar, water, gelatine, glycerine works like a charm.  Sorry can't post copyright recipes here...

post #12 of 16

WASC is white almod sour cream.  This is a modified mix.  Starts with a mix and a bunch of other things are added.  Not sure if that would work for your scratch recipe needs.  Another thing when you are making your 10 and 14 round is to bake at 325, put an oiled upside down metal flower nail in the center (to bring more heat into the center of your cake) and magic strips (purchased or homemade) around the edge of the pan to slow down the cooking on the outside edge.  All of these three things will make for a cake that doesn't over cook on the outside before the inside is done and also make for a flat cake so you don't have to cut a big hump off when done.  The home made strips are an old terry towel cut into long strips.  Make them at least as long as the circumference of your pan and the width of the towel is twice the height of the pan.  If you are using 2 inch pan your strips will be 4 inches wide.  Wet them, wring them out, fold it in half lengthwise and wrap it around the pan.  Use a metal paper clip or pin to secure it.  If I have extra length I just roll the extra up an place beside the pan.  Do you have to do a fondant cake?  Could you do a buttercream cake or a bc cake with fondant accents?  That way you wouldn't need any or as much fondant.  Another advantage of a chocolate cake is no expensive cake flour is needed.

post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BakingIrene View Post

WASC is a doctored mix cake.  No it won't do.

 

For cake recipes and tutorials, check out the recipes section of King Arthur Flour.  Use their "classic yellow" cake recipe that has sour cream or yogurt plus the AP flour.  Get the girls to sit down and compare several recipes before they start baking. Get them to find and read the Wilton online info on building tiered cakes.  Your girls should write up a paper explaining their cake recipe trials and results as part of their badge. 

 

You may need to explain to the audience that "practise makes perfect" and that these are not professional bakers.  Their final tiered cake may also benefit from some flavoured syrup added to each layer as they are assembling--that will get the "awesome" reaction from the party. Neat simple decorations better than fancy flops.  Maybe have them make a 2 tier "regular" and a 2 tier carved, instead of a 3 tier carved.

 

Fondant: look up any Wilton Celebrate! book from the 1970's (public library may have it) or from ebay online.  Their "rolled fondant" recipe with powdered sugar, water, gelatine, glycerine works like a charm.  Sorry can't post copyright recipes here...

Thank you for the information on WASC.  

 

Regarding the badge...it only covers decorating, not baking.  The requirements stipulate a 3-tier cake.  We took a special class from a Wilton instructor (she put it together just for us) to make sure we could cover the specific requirements...such as making roses and using those on a cake (so much for nothing fancy...hahaha). However, I had the girls use their roses on a different cake, so we weren't forced to use them on these.  I can probably get them *not* to do a 3-tier topsy-turvy cake (simply because I think that one would *need* to be covered in fondant, and we'll probably need to use a buttercream/chocolate frosting. We can always make some fondant decorations, if we wanted to, or cover the cake board in fondant).  So...much...fun...Maybe I'll have the girls whip up a batch of stiff royal icing to make some decorations ahead of time.  We can do lots of pretty flowers that way, and finish up the cake the day of the event.  I'm all for SIMPLE at this point!

post #14 of 16

Isn't there a scratch version of the WASC here in the recipe section?

Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BakingIrene View Post

 Sorry can't post copyright recipes here...

Recipes cannot be copyrighted, so there is no such thing as copyrighted recipe.  If CC has a rule against posting "published" recipes (which I admit I am unaware of) that is their choice.  The publishing of a recipe does not copyright it.   Thus no one is violating copyright by posting a list of ingredients and the directions for how to combine them. 

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