C, if you used KA’s unbleached cake flour, that would explain the results you had. Unbleached flour does not work well in Rose’s butter cake recipes.
Also, I think there may have been a problem with your pans having too much batter. The recipe (TCB, p.46-7) makes two 9” x 1.5” layers. For two 9” x 2” layers, you should have used 1.33 (1 1/3) times the recipe (in my edition, this is noted in the sidebar on p.47). If you doubled the recipe and baked it in two 9” x 2” pans, that would have contributed to the poor result. The pans should only be filled about half full, according to the recipe.
The only successful way to double this recipe (using round layers) is to bake it in four 9” x 1.5” pans.
Given your size pan, I don’t think there was a problem with the baking powder, just with the flour and the quantity of batter in the pan.
It was the unbleached; I remember reading about how you wouldn’t want ‘bleached flour’ in your child’s birthday cake. The recipe was from RHC , the white velvet cake. The original recipe was for 1 9x2 pan. What am I missing when trying to double some of the recipes in her new book.
You’re making the white velvet from RHC p. 17, is that right? In that case, just doubling it and baking it in two pans should be fine, no need to worry about baking powder adjustment. I have doubled Rose’s butter cake recipes many times, and they always work out as long as the pan size does not change.
I can think of four things to check to solve your problem:
1. Use bleached flour (KA makes a Queen Guinevere cake flour that is bleached, or you can use bleached AP, as listed in the ingredients).
2. Was your oven too cool/ did the cake bake in the time specified?
3. Was your batter undermixed/ are you using a hand mixer? If so, beating times may need to be increased.
4. Was there too much baking powder? The amount specified should work, did you use the right measuring spoon, use baking powder, not soda?
I have a question that pertains to mixing times for Rose’s cakes and other cakes.
Rose specifies mixing times, 20 sec after each egg, etc, but sometimes a recipe will say (usually at the end after you have mixed liquid and flour alternating), mix until smooth. How long is that? Is is 1 minute, 30 second or what.I know it sounds silly, but I’m always wondering, if i don’t mix it long enough will it effect the structure, or will it make it tough….... So I guess, how long is enough?!
You have helped loads!
Depends on the method—with creaming it is possible to make the texture tough, with Rose’s method, that isn’t really an issue. Also depends on if you are using a stand mixer or hand mixer, but I would say 30-60 sounds right—probably 30 since it is at the end of mixing.
I don’t used unbleached ap flour for a cake unless AP in general is specifically allowed/called for, but I am interested in experimenting with the unbleached cake flour. (I suspect I will agree with HEctor, though.)
I did want to mention here for anyone searching the threads in the future that Trader Joe’s carries what is almost certainly King Arthur unbleached all-purpose in a blue bag under its own label, and for much cheaper than I have seen it elsewhere. They re-brand things often and the packaging often gives it away, especially if they used to carry the branded item and a Trader Joe’s plain label pops up in its place.
King Arthur unbleached AP is my everyday flour.
I use a Kitchen Aide Pro mixer and I count to about 30 and quit. It was much easier many years ago when you opened a box, put in the fixens, counted 2 minutes, baked it for 30, slapped on some frosting - always Sander’s Buttercream, and the kids were smiling! Now the end result is much better, but with alot more brain wave usage!
sometimes a recipe will say (usually at the end after you have mixed liquid and flour alternating), mix until smooth. How long is that?
As Matthew points out, it depends on the method of mixing. For the muffin method (mix all the dry, mix all the wet, then fold together), keep it as short as possible to avoid toughening the cake/muffin. Also for the creaming method, limit any mixing after the milk starts going in, same reason- loss of tenderness.
Thank you all for your help. I do appreciate your taking the time to answer me. You’d think I’d never baked before, but now doing it on a more professional level, I need to get it right and understand the why’s and why nots!
Just throwing my $0.02 in the ring. I’ve been using King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour for a bit now (a friend added a box to her order for me), and I have to say I’m really liking the results I’m getting. I’ve made Rose’s white butter cake in 6in and 8in (2in high) rounds and I get nice, flat tops w/ no dip w/o using cake strips (which give me terrible results, for the most part - but that’s another discussion).
I’m using the wedding cake charts at the back of the book, and I’m using buttermilk in place of regular milk. Somewhere in The Cake Bible is says that buttermilk tenderizes the cake a bit, although I’m too lazy to look up the exact page reference. I’m also not neutralizing the acidity in the buttermilk - there’s a short line somewhere that Rose says she doesn’t neutralize the buttermilk, preferring the more tender crumb and taste “as is.”
Apart from the fact that the KAF UCF has some availability issues (I’ve only found it so far at Whole Foods - a/k/a Whole Paycheck) it’s also more expensive - $4.99 for a 2lb box as opposed to $2.99-3.49 for SoftASilk or Swan’s Down.
I’ve more than doubled the White Velvet Cake—what an awesome cake. Unfrosted, it’s one of my faves. I have 2.5x-ed it. Made two layers, and then a couple of small loaves. No problems.
I have become addicted to bleached cake flour (I use Swan’s). I use all organic ingredients, and then I use this super-processed, super-refined flour, and yet, I wouldn’t do anything differently. It makes such a great cake!!!! It’s criminal, really it is!