I need advice I have been baking for 10 years. Over the last 2 years I have been having problems with my scratch white cake periodically customers have said they are dry. Happened again today and I’m at a loss for what the problem is. I have tried to account for all the variables. I thought it was the switch to propane gas. I weigh by gram, I mix by time, started cooking shorter tiers, set cakes up day they are baked, use a sugar syrup, made sure the butter is soft.
I’m truly at a loss as to what is going wrong, I’m so disheartened and frustrated at this point. I hate that someone special occasion was ruined by a dry cake I also wonder how many people have been unhappy and haven’t told me
I’m beginning to think it’s time to switch to a commercial mix to help with consistency. Any suggestions on brands or what I could be doing wrong. Any advice would be great
do you use butter in the recipe -- do you refrigerate or freeze your cakes
Yes I use butter ( I thought this was a problem with it not being consistent soft Louisiana summer vs winter) but now make sure it is always soft
no I don’t refrigerate or freeze cakes
Since K8 hasn’t popped back in here I’ll tell you what she has advised others in the past: Can the customers be putting the cake in the frig? Scratch recipe that are made with butter can taste dry if refrigerated even after they come to room temp She understands the science that I don’t & she prolly will post more info about it for you
yes what kakeladi said -- after chilling in any way the butter keeps it from not relaxing back all the way to previous room temp softness unless you microwave it for a few seconds -- which could cause problems with the icing -- so if your peeps refrigerate the cakes that could explain it -- because you did not say you detected it being dry --
Hi Thanks for the replies
I regularly tell people not to refrigerate the cakes, but living in Louisiana for some reason they are obsessed with doing it, I truly don't understand why. Maybe that's what she did I will check.
I didn't notice the cake was dry at all. I have got a new window air conditioner and it is keeping the kitchen cold again, but not fridge cold.
Would it help the situation if I substituted some shortening for the butter as in half butter half shortening. I'm trying to work out a way to be done this continuing problem. By either fixing the problem I have, find a new recipe one that can be made in large batches (I have learnt not all recipes times up well) that uses liquid whites. I don't have the time to separate 32 eggs every batch of cake nor do I need that many yolks in my life. Or I am seriously considering using a commercial mix although baking from scratch is something I have always done and the only thing I have issues with is this darn white cake. It is making me crazy, mainly because I cant pin point where I'm going wrong.
Why don’t you try the WASC recipe Compare & see if it doesn’t help It’s so closer scratch There Also is a “scratch “ version
it’s not at all that the cake is actually dry but it is firmer because the butter is holding tight unless it gets a bit of heat on it — so when it doesn’t melt in the mouth and is a bit thicker going down the throat we just consider/translate that as “dry” —
I used a duncan hines white cake mix doctored because it is a workhorse — you can freeze and refrigerate — leave cut slices out on the table and it won’t crust over — holds well over the days you need to bake & decorate — slices and serves clean —
cake mixes now of course are 3 ounces lighter than they were so for every five boxes I added one mix to make up the difference or added 3 ounces to each box— you can order cake mix by the case from wall mart —
a cup of self rising flour
a cup of sugar
an extra egg (usually like two eggs two whites) store bought not organic or anything so the tolls are light in color
a cup of sour cream
1& 1/3 cups water
a little oil like a quarter cup
i usually forgot the extra flavoring but my fillings and icing made up the difference plus I used a grand marnier splash (simple syrup)
oh and don’t let your butter get too soft that it separates out the water in there either— the action of your mixer makes it warmer too — so i keep my butter firmer too —
Some people are just used to texture and taste of box mix. For them the from scratch cake may seems too dense or too dry or too wathever. Your cake may have been just fine and not dry at all. Sometimes it's just a question of perception and what we grew up eating.