14” and 16” genoise,  anyone?
Posted: 22 July 2009 05:41 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I need to make 2 two large wedding cakes and both need 14” and 16” genoise layers.  In Rose’s book she says ones it’s over 12”, genoise loses it’s quality.  Anyone has done genoise larger than 12”.  Any suggestions?  Thank you so much!

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Posted: 23 July 2009 02:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Being leavened only with eggs, genoise is not that adaptable to baking in large pans and certainly, not deep ones. The cake cannot support itself well under those circumstances. I have used several thin layers of 9” genoise stacked with different fillings to get some height, and one could do that I’m sure, with the 12” rounds as well.

But since you need 14” and 16” layers for your cake, why not use another type of sponge? One that includes chemical leavening. We used to make one at baking school called a Lamington Sponge that was very popular. The formula made two full sized bakers’ pans, 26” x 18” inside a cake frame that was about 2” high. Sometimes we would spread the batter more thinly to get four pans, and stack the thin layers of sponge to create a many-layered cake. I can type the formula out for you, if you’re interested.

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Posted: 23 July 2009 02:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Carolita,

Thank you SO MUCH for your reply.  Yes, if you don’t not mind sharing the formula, I’d like to try it.  I’m big fan of sponge cakes.  I was also thinking of baking genoise as very thin layer in 14 and 16 pans, like in a half sheet pan.  Don’t know if that will work but worth a try.  Thank you again.

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Posted: 23 July 2009 03:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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No problem. My only proviso is that you give credit to my alma mater, if you share the formula with anyone else. It’s a commercial baking formula that comes to you courtesy of Vancouver Island University, Professional Baking Program.

Lamington Sponge
For two full sheet pans (18x26)

660 grams butter, room temperature
1170 grams sugar

460 grams eggs, liquid fresh (about 9 large eggs)
630 grams milk
25 grams pure vanilla

900 grams pastry flour
30 grams baking powder
9 grams salt

METHOD:
Alternate liquid and dry after creaming butter and sugar. Begin and end with dry.

Note: a 2” high cake frame is placed in each sheet pan. Finished cake height is about 1 1/2”.

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Posted: 24 July 2009 02:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I have made biscuit de savoie up to 14” with cake bible.  And my Japanese chefs make genoise in full sheets without any baking powder, but the texture is more feathery than spongy but equally well accepted.  You will need a 20 quart mixer!

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Posted: 24 July 2009 05:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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That’s really good to know, Hector, about your Japanese chefs making genoise in full sheet pans! I so wanted to try it with Rose’s chocolate genoise formula when I was at baking school. Did all the calculations to scale the formula up. Our pastry chef just shook his head and said it wouldn’t work. He would have let me try, but it was towards the end of the program and we ran out of time. Now I know! The texture changes when you go beyond a 12” round, but it does work. Can’t wait for an opportunity to try.

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Posted: 24 July 2009 05:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I made the moist chocolate genoise on a half sheet pan a few years ago—didn’t encounter any problems.

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Posted: 27 July 2009 04:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Thank you for all your replies.  I tried Rose’s cocoa genoise in a half 16” pan using 10 eggs, it baked up 1” high without problems except the bottom was very heavy and leathery.  I was very sad.  The taste was very good though.  I’m thinking if I should just go back to cocoa powder+ flour mixture since I had problem mixing the cocoa/water mixture properly.

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Posted: 27 July 2009 05:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Before you abandon Rose’s way of doing the Genoise au Chocolat, what about trying a small scale version to see if there’s anything in your technique that produced the leathery result? Not trying to be critical! I just know that when I make something for the first time, I usually benefit from making at least one test version exactly as the recipe is designed. Only then do I introduce my own variations (different flavours, sizes, etc.). That way, I’m assured that I’m giving the recipe a fair trial. Even Rose herself had a flop with her classic genoise once, when she hadn’t made it for a long time! So those of us who have so much to learn from her usually find that a couple of runs at a recipe will produce a perfect result!

For the small scale version, I would suggest that you make half the recipe on page 129 The Cake Bible and put it in a 6” pan. Then you haven’t used much in the way of ingredients, time or energy. Follow her instructions to the letter, especially the length of the beating time. If you still get a leathery result, then you know for sure the problem is with you and not because you’ve taken the recipe to the 16” size which, strictly speaking, she doesn’t recommend.

I would do that before playing with her mixing method. You’ve already introduced one variable by taking it to the larger size. Why introduce another, without first checking for baker error? We’re all human after all. Good luck!

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Posted: 27 July 2009 08:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Carolita,

I actually did make a 9” per recipe to begin with and the result was the same, the top was light and bottom was heavy.  I think I did not mix in the cocoa mixture enough so it went down to the bottom.  I always worry that I over fold the batter.  I’m going to try again tonight, if it still fails I will have to go with plan B.  Thank you again for your support!  I should not have promised to make anything bigger than 12” in my small oven.

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