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Sheet cake questions
Posted: 14 July 2008 07:18 PM   [ Ignore ]
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When making a filled half sheet cake, is it easier to “tort” the cake or is it okay to make another layer to place on top of the filling?
It seems like torting a cake that large would be a task. I also like the idea of the taller cake that the two layers would produce. Also, what size pan would I need for a half sheet cake? I am wondering about the depth…...especially if I will be stacking two layers. Anyone have a favorite brand of pan?
Thanks!

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Posted: 14 July 2008 07:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Hi Kristen - I’ve done both and you’re right - torting a half sheet sized cake is a task!  I use a flat cookie sheet to move the torted layers, but I really prefer the look of 2 stacked together - very impressive looking.  I like Magic Line pans and use an 11x15 - most of Rose’s double layer cake recipes will fit that size pan to make 1 layer.  I always use an upside down flower nail in the center of the batter and I wrap the pan with magi-cake strips.

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Posted: 14 July 2008 07:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Thank you so much! That is very helpful. This is my first time doing such a large cake (I am actually going to make 2-3 of them), so your advise is greatly appreciated! How many people does a double layer 11x15 cake serve?

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Posted: 14 July 2008 07:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Hi Kirsten,

Like Patrincia, I also use a Magic Line pan because I like the perfectly square corners. My half-sheet pan measures 12 x 18 inches.

I find that working with frozen or semi-frozen layers of a cake that size is much easier to manipulate.

I made a double-layer half-sheet cake for a birthday party that consisted of about 35 children and about 25 adults. There was other food at the party, such as pizza and munchies. When the party was over only about 25% of the cake was left. I did not notice much waste—people seemed to really enjoy the cake, and several people went back for second and third helpings.

Good luck!

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Posted: 14 July 2008 08:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Before you pour batter into your 12 x 18 pan, you should know the pan I was referring to was an 11x15x2 pan, the batter fills the pan about 1” high. 

Like Christine said, cold or frozen cake is much easier to tort, stack, transport, etc.

For the number or servings I get from a 2-layer 11x15 cake, it really depends on the serving sizes I want.  TCB portions are a bit small for my crowd, so I cut a bit bigger.  Example: if I were to serve 1wx3dx4h” slices, I would get 55 servings.

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Posted: 14 July 2008 08:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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It’s a good thing Patrincia pointed out the measurement differences between what we are calling a half-sheet pan. I don’t know if there is a standard size—maybe a professional baker could chime in here? Or it could be that what I refer to as my half-sheet pan is really not.

I agree with Patrincia that you have to decide how big you want the slices. I, too, find TCB portions small, because when people taste how delicious the cake is, many of them want a second serving. And I have never had friends or family complain about leftover cake.

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Posted: 14 July 2008 10:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Where can I find the “Magic Line” pans? Does Michael’s or a similar store carry them?
I looked it up, and I read that a 12"x18” is a half sheet. Christine, how much batter do you use to fill your pan of this size?
Thank you to all of you for all of the great advice. I am feeling much more confident now grin

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Posted: 14 July 2008 10:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I bought my Magic Line pans at a restaurant supply company here in Los Angeles. I believe you can mail-order them from Sweet Celebrations. I don’t know whether Michael’s carries them.

According to “Cake Bible,” a 18 x 12 pan will fit 29 cups, whereas a 9-inch round pan will fit 8 and 2/3 cups. So, the equivalent of four 9-inch layers will fit comfortably in that half-sheet pan. The batter should come up to the halfway point, but no higher. I agree with Patrincia that you should use Magi-cake strips.

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Posted: 15 July 2008 10:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Kristen - 15 July 2008 01:22 AM

Where can I find the “Magic Line” pans? Does Michael’s or a similar store carry them?
I looked it up, and I read that a 12"x18” is a half sheet. Christine, how much batter do you use to fill your pan of this size?
Thank you to all of you for all of the great advice. I am feeling much more confident now grin

You’re right… a half sheet measures 12x18, but be sure to use one with tall sides rather than the common household 12x18 that’s only 1/2-inch tall.  I’ve never seen Magic-Line available in a standard craft store… only specialty stores and online.  There are other brands that perform well too - I have purchased cake pans from 3 different sources - they’re all pretty similar.

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Posted: 15 July 2008 01:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Hey, I have never found a consesus on what constitutes 1/4, 1/2 or full size sheet cake either!

I don’t torte a cake that size, I bake two thinner layers and that way I have a perfectly flat top as well.

One way that I have seen it done is to torte the cake and then cut the top layer vertically in half thru creating a smaller 1/2 that is easier to move. Remove it, fill and replace. Repeat with other half. 

There is a great video on youtube, but I haven’t found it yet. will post when found.


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Posted: 15 July 2008 01:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I’ve ordered from here - great stuff at great prices.

http://cooksdream.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=LLPOB12182

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Posted: 15 July 2008 01:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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This should help:

Full sheet pan - 16x24
1/2 sheet pan - 12x18
q/4 sheet pan - 9x13

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Posted: 15 July 2008 05:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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I called all of the restaurant supply stores near me and none of them carry the Magic line pans, so I just ordered the pan that you linked to. Thanks!
You have all been really helpful!

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Posted: 15 July 2008 07:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Oh, one more question….....Where can I buy the Magi-cake strips? Do the Wilton brand ones work?

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Posted: 16 July 2008 09:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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I made a half sheet for my MIL’s 80th last summer, and I have two 12 x 18 x 1 inch tall pans here. One recipe of Rose’s All Occasion Downy layer cake fits perfectly in each pan, it rose beautifully within the 1 inch depth, and stayed wonderfully flat on top. I made two recipes and baked them separately.  By the time I filled and frosted with whipped cream, it made for one nice tall cake.  Personally, I would not attempt to tort this size cake. 

Here is a link to where I got some of my Magic Line pans. 

http://cooksdream.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?

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Posted: 17 July 2008 10:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Kristen - 15 July 2008 10:09 PM

Oh, one more question….....Where can I buy the Magi-cake strips? Do the Wilton brand ones work?

I have both the Magi-cake and Wilton brands and they both work just fine.  Some even have velcro enclosures now, but both of my sets included T-pins.  I’ve used paper clips and have even stapled them closed.  You can double up for larger pans.

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