Monday, April 25, 2011

Practice Wedding Cake: The Cake

Hey you guys! Do you know what's way harder than you might think it would be? Baking 32 cups of vanilla buttermilk cake batter into actual cakes. I used a modified version of this recipe, which is my go-to red velvet (with added cocoa) and makes the lightest, fluffiest, moist-est cake. It also caused two entire days of cake drama.

Cake trial #1:

What I tried: Filling my 12", 10", 8" and 6" pans with batter according to Wilton's recommended cake-baking chart. I also wrapped the pans with cake strips to try to ensure even baking.

What happened: Cake bubbled over the sides, cake dripped from the top rack into the bottom cakes. Cake dripped from the bottom rack onto the oven floor, burned, filled my house with smoke and generally made me upset. The cakes baked totally unevenly, with sides, tops and bottoms all cooking wonky.

What I learned: Put way less cake batter into the pans. My oven sucks.

Cake trial #2:

What I tried: Filling my 12", 10", 8" and 6" pans with way less batter. Putting only 2 pans into the oven at a time.

What happened: Cakes still baked unevenly. Way too little batter in the pans.

What I learned: My oven still sucks. I should Google this.

Cake Trial #3 and #4:

What I tried: Filling my 12", 10", 8" and 6" pans with the perfect amount of batter. Putting only 1 pan into the oven at a time. Use a heating core on the 12" and 10" cakes, stolen from the inside of my bear-shaped cake pan.

What happened: Moderate success. the 12" and 8" cakes baked perfectly. The 10" and 6" baked wonky no matter what I tried.

What I learned: Use a heating core on 12" cakes. Also, use all your fail cake scraps to fill in the holes in your final cakes.

So anyway, the cakes are now happily sitting in my office's freezer so they can stay fresh until Thursday night/ Friday morning, when I try to frost and assemble this beast. I am considering sleep-deprived liveblogging the process.

In other news: The Union Jack Cake Topper is complete:


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