Is it ok to split cake recipe?
Posted: 14 June 2008 09:13 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Hello-

I would really like to test cake recipes but don’t want to make an entire recipe sometimes. we are a small family of two and people at work are always on a diet. if i spilt a cake recipe and a measurement calls for 1/3 or like 3 eggs would you err on greater or less side? would splitting a recipe compromise the end result in texture? please help! Thanks!!

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Posted: 14 June 2008 10:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Weigh the ingredients and you should be just fine.

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Posted: 14 June 2008 10:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I do this all the time to test recipes, just scale them uniformly down to a smaller size.  Eggs are not that hard to cut in half, really.  The easiest way is to zero out your scale and crack the egg into a bowl and weigh the egg.  Then beat it really really well.  Add 1/2 the weight of the beaten egg to your recipe.  If you don’t have a scale, you can also cut the egg right in half with a knife. For greater precision, separate the yolk and the white. Put each part on a small flat place.  The yolk is simple to eyeball, cut in half and scrape half of it into the recipe.  Same with the white, just eyeball and add.  It works really well.

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Posted: 15 June 2008 02:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Agreed—-I do small-batch recipes all the time! With great success! I use a toaster oven to bake them, as well, and I have found lots of tips for cutting down the small-batches, but definitely a scale is necessary!

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Posted: 15 June 2008 02:40 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I often bake smaller batches of recipes. I agree, a scale is really helpful.

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Posted: 15 June 2008 02:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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thanks for the tip on weighing. i am starting to bake by weight recently. especially butter. those 4oz sticks are usually never 4oz! however, does anyone have a good reference as to how much things should weigh such as 3 eggs? i get that 1 cup should be 8oz etc. Thanks everyone!

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Posted: 15 June 2008 02:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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The white of a large egg weighs 1.05 oz, while the yolk of one large egg should weigh .65 oz.

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Posted: 15 June 2008 03:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Trolley, I wanted to clarify that a cup of something does not always weigh 8 ounces.  You will need a chart of ingredients listing the weight of one cup if your recipe is not already written in ounces or grams.  Almost all of Rose’s books have this chart.

For halving cakes with leavening, you made need to increase the leavening slightly if you want a perfectly level top.

For using less than a whole egg, I usually beat the egg first and then weigh what I need (but you could also measure by volume).

One more thing, if you need to half an unusual volume amount, such as 1/3 cup, you can convert it to tablespoons (16 in a cup) or teaspoons (48) to make it easier to measure precisely. 

For example,

1/3 cup = 16 teaspoons

16/2= 8

8 teaspoons = 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons

So, for halving a recipe using 1/3 cup, you would use 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons

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Posted: 16 June 2008 03:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I also bake lots of little cakes, half recipies or sometimes even less.  Whenever I am tempted to substitute or use a different flavored variation from TCB, I try to make two versions, one exactly as written and one with the changes.  That way, you have a gold standard against which to compare your variation.  And, I’m sad to say, my own versions rarely live up to the standard, though I have learned a lot from doing this. 

In addition to all the comments about weighing, make sure you have the right size and shape of pan.  The batter should fill the pan between half and two-thirds full, and if it’s a non-traditional shape, there should not be too much distance from the edge of the pan to the center of the batter.  A six-inch layer pan normally works pretty well. 

Julie

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Posted: 21 June 2008 09:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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should you check the level your oven to get perfect level cakes?

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Posted: 13 July 2008 11:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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trolley - 15 June 2008 12:13 AM

Hello-

I would really like to test cake recipes but don’t want to make an entire recipe sometimes. we are a small family of two and people at work are always on a diet. if i spilt a cake recipe and a measurement calls for 1/3 or like 3 eggs would you err on greater or less side? would splitting a recipe compromise the end result in texture? please help! Thanks!!


I split recipes in half when making a test batch, or when I do not want a large cake.  Works all the time.

Sarah Phillips from Baking 911 suggests that recipes should not be split to less than half to minimize chance of failure (i.e., mixing times might need to be lessened for smaller batches, accuracy problems may come into play when weighing small ingredients, etc.)

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