help converting carrot cake recipe for wedding cake! time running out!
Posted: 18 December 2010 05:14 PM   [ Ignore ]
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hi, all—a newbie here. love the site already!

cutting to the chase: i’m helping out my little sis last-minute and baking her wedding cake. i’m in d.c.; she’s in denver (so questions about transporting TK). right now, though, i need help translating her recipe into a three-tier three-inch-high layers cake. it will be 6-, 9- and 12-inch tiers each 3 inches deep. i have a fisher-paykel aero oven (convection-like). but i’m finding that the deeper layers, of course, bake differently. and i’ve been through my inherited copy of the cake bible—and i’m sure it’s my failing—but i’m not really able to translate the recalculations for butter or sponge cake into carrot when increasing a recipe to wedding-cake-size. this isn’t a sponge or a butter cake, technically. and of course it’s got a lot of liquid:
2 c flour/1 tsp each baking soda and powder/ 1/4 tsp salt/ 2 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs/ 2 tsp vanilla/ 1.5 c sugar/ 1/2 c brown sugar/ 1/4 c milk, then 1 c oil
2.5 c carrots/ 2 c shredded coconut/ 1 c crushed pineapple/ 1 c yellow raisins/ 1.5 c chopped pecans

for the first shot, i just quadrupled the recipe (which seemed to be enough for the 9- and 12-inch layers). no other adjustments. my 12-inch layer took quite a while to bake, and it seems the very center is a bit underdone.

i’ve been baking a while but am just starting to get serious about it and work to understand the scientific side. and i’ve never baked anything on this scale before. and i have little time—i need to either ship the cake in a week or carry it on a plane dec. 28. i’m now leaning toward freezing it, repacking in pans (plan B is to rebake in denver if necessary, though that’s plan B because i’d have a lot of trial and error due to high altitude adaptations) and assembling and decorating out there (making white chocoate cream cheese frosting out there as well). does that seem safest (despite rose’s brother’s wedding cake catastrophe story? smile —i’m flying nonstop to denver. i thought i’d pack it in its own suitcase, as it’s probably too heavy to carry aboard. also, the cargo hold will clearly keep it more than cold enough.

any and all advice is most appreciated! i know i can do this for her with the proper guidance and effort. hard work and long hours are not a problem.

thanks,all!
—anne

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Posted: 18 December 2010 05:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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It’s nice that you’re helping out your sister!

As for getting the large layer to bake well, my only suggestion is to follow the standard advice and reduce the baking powder (but not the soda) and use a heat core or flower nail in the center to help it bake evenly.  Cake strips, too, might help if you’re not already using them.

Not sure about transporting, other than that it might be a good idea to freeze it very solidly before the trip.

Perhaps others with more wedding cake experience will chime in! smile

Good luck!

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Posted: 18 December 2010 11:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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thanks so much, julie—went out and got a couple of flower nails. will try again tmw and try to calculate the baking powder adjustment as well and see how that works.

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Posted: 24 December 2010 11:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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ack! i am still having problems. my version of the cake bible is inherited from my mom and probably fairly outdated/without more recent info. but here’s my issue: i have a carrot cake (very dense and lots of moisture) PLUS it’s in 3-inch deep tiers, very different from rose’s two 2-inch tier instructions. i’ve decreased baking powder, eggs, some other liquid (crushed pineapple is used, and now i drain it well), etc., and have used 2 flower nails. still, my last 12-inch-square tier took forever to bake (and i will know when i get home from work tonite—yes, working christmas eve!—but i believe my outer portion is a bit overdone and the very center might still be underdone). i’m not having much more success with the 9-inch-square 3-inch-deep tier, either. (ingredients listed above for regular recipe which i’m trying to convert.)

i’ve tried, and i know it’s my inexperience, but i’m just not successfully taking into account what needs to be adjusted. it IS possible to bake a 12-inch-square, 3-inch-deep cake evenly, right?? or was i ignorant for trying?

i have three days left to bake! and then i have to freeze the cake and take it to denver!

any more advice out there?

thank you….

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Posted: 26 December 2010 05:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Anne, sorry you’re having so much trouble.  I haven’t tried it but I’ve heard that 3” layers can be difficult to bake.  All I can think of is to look at recipes designed for 3” pans and see how they compare to what you’re doing. 

Good luck!

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