I've been trying to work on stacking 9x13 sheet cakes with a filling in between each layer. When trying to place the top layers, my cakes crack and it swiftly turns into a nightmare. I have a carrot cake coming up...the client wants two layered 9x13 sheet cake with a cream cheese filling. I used to freeze the cakes back home but that is no longer an option for me (stationed in Germany with soldier husband and our freezer/refrigerator is the tiniest on the planet). Should I quarter the top layer and then stack? Any suggestions/advice would be greatly appreciated!
I have a huge 18x15 jellyroll pan that I use for my sheet cakes. I always cut them in half width-wise when I stack them because that's the only way I can manage them. I know a lot of people use a cake lifter, though, to move larger cake layers, but I don't have one. Wilton makes one, and I know you can buy it at Michaels. It looks pretty nifty, but I haven't gotten around to it yet. If you are working with 9x13 cakes, I would try that before I cut them in half.
I don't always have the best luck with this either, but I put the one I want to lift on a cutting board or back of a pan. Then position it over the cake and kind of shimmy it off. I sometimes get a little crack on the underside, but not a huge mess. I"m sure there is a better way though.
Erin, thanks for the info about the cake lifter...I never even thought of that. While shipping to Germany takes a while and the cake I'm making is for a Change of Command ceremony this Monday, I wont be able to do that (however...I just bought myself the cake lifter for Christmas ha).
Diane, that's similar to what I've been doing but my cakes are so moist they crack every time. I'm two steps from utilizing the freezing temps outside and dunking the contained cakes in the snow! lol
Have you guys ever tried to quarter the top layer and then stack them (kinda like puzzling it back together)? I thought maybe that would work but am not sure about how presentation would be once being cut for servings (or how that would effect servings for that matter).
Thanks for the help!
If you can't freeze it, then the cake you are going to stack needs to sit wrapped overnight. It will firm up a bit and be slightly easier to work with. I have found I cannot stack big cakes like this the same day they bake without some time in the freezer.
To start, I put it back in its original sheet pan, then I flip it over on a cookie sheet, and use the original sheet pan to push it to the edge of the cookie sheet. I line up the short ends, and use the original pan to push off the first edge and get it started. At this point it's nice to have hubby or someone around that can take off the original pan. I've done it alone, just more contortionist. Then just gradually work the cookie sheet out from under it. If it needs adjusting, I put the original sheet pan back on to shove it one way or the other -- the pan helps keep it together and more evenly distribute the pressure.
There is probably an even better method -- I think a piece of cardboard, cut to size and covered in wax paper (maybe dusted in powder sugar if your cake is sticky) would probably work better than a cookie sheet, and it would be less heavy. I've just not taken the time to cut cardboard because I don't really stack sheet cakes all that often.
I stack 9x13 and half-sheet cakes a lot with little problem. I use a "cake lifter": it's called a cake board.
I level the sheet cake, then place a sheet cake board on top and flip it over. Now all I have to do is slide it off the board onto the other cake.
I use a glass cutting board and this helps to just slide it on top of the filling. I've also used a cake board but not as sturdy.
You can bake two 9x13 cakes level and stack them to make it easier.
I have baked and stacked two 9x13 cakes. After cooling, leveling, and filling I use a cookie sheet to slide the cake on top of the filling...no breakage.
If I understand right, you are trying to place the top layer of a 9x13 on top of the filling, and it is crumbling. You want to know if you cut the layer into quarters if it would be easier to handle and would it look ok slicing?
As long as you are good at filling covering the seams where they connect, it should be fine. It's just like putting two sheetcakes side by side to make a bigger base cake. As long as you don't leave a dip or a hump, it'll be good and will look fine when cut.
But you should be able to just cut it up the middle shortwise- and it would be pretty easy to handle. Only do that to the top layer- not to the bottom one!
Another thing is Maybe when you torte it, you could torte closer to the bottom side- so that the top layer will be thick enough not to crumble.
We always got lucky overseas and had american appliances even if we were off post. I couldn't imagine having a tiny fridge!