Adjusting Cake Bible Recipes For Tier Height

Baking By KatrinaBroughton Updated 10 Oct 2012 , 1:25am by karateka

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KatrinaBroughton Posted 8 Oct 2012 , 12:45pm
post #1 of 6

I've been reading lots of postings on cake heights and it seems 4" is a good standard. My question is when I do the all occasion yellow and chocolate recipes in the Cake Bible, the tiers seem to come out closer to 3 to 3.5". I'm stacking two layers with filling, and just decorating with buttercream (no fondant).

On this cake I did for my best friend, I ended up putting the batter sized for 9" pans into 8" pans, and the tier turned out to be 4". I think it looks a lot better than the 12" and 16" tiers below

Do you think its the recipes or something else? Not enough filling perhaps? I'm using the exact amounts recommended in the Cake Bible.

Many thanks!

ps: I was not really happy with the finish of the buttercream on this. I could not smooth it out as much as I wanted. I think it may have been that I used an italian merengue b/c as opposed to smbc, which I feel is a bit softer.

5 replies
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BakingIrene Posted 8 Oct 2012 , 3:04pm
post #2 of 6

You can ensure the max height during baking by using the magic cake strips--they prevent humps.

Apart from that, I fill pans by experience. I make a larger batch of batter and fill one pan for each tier (my top tier is 3" deep). Then after the cakes have cooled, I mix the same batter and bake again. I keep notes of which recipe multiple does which pans.

For the larger pans, I get a 4" tier by baking 3 cakes each just over 1" high with buttercream filling. They bake a little faster and I think that helps with preventing dryness.

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FromScratchSF Posted 8 Oct 2012 , 3:30pm
post #3 of 6

RLB's recipes in the Cake Bible are for 1.5" pans (if I remember correct), not 2" pans, so yes all her cakes come out shorter. I think it was perhaps the standard at the time the CB was published? But anyway, if you want a taller finished cake layer, you need to add more batter to the pan, which means you need to make more batter at a time. If you are using her Rose Power levels, I add +1 to an 8" cake, +1.5 for 9", +2 for a 10", +3 for a 12", +4 for 14" and so on.

And yes, bake even strips are a must!

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BakingIrene Posted 8 Oct 2012 , 3:46pm
post #4 of 6

When I was buying cake pans in 1974, they were all 2" deep regardless of brand. The tinned-steel ones were 3" deep. The throwaway foil pans were also 2" deep.

The Cake Bible has great cake recipes. Wilton pan capacities are more useful.

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KatrinaBroughton Posted 9 Oct 2012 , 1:36pm
post #5 of 6

Thanks so much! I'll give these suggestions a try

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karateka Posted 10 Oct 2012 , 1:25am
post #6 of 6

Sometimes mine come out short. Other times they overflow the pan and cause a mess in my oven.

I've checked and adjusted oven temp, always have room temp ingredients, tested my leavener (yes, it has come out different heights out of the SAME JAR of baking powder).

It drives me nertz. I wish I could figure it out. icon_confused.gif

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