Cake Servings - I’m confused!
Posted: 18 July 2008 11:55 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Maybe anyone can help me on this, I am looking in the cake bibile and the list with the “Rose Factors” on it says a 16” cake serves 150 people, but when I make my own chart and going by other suggestions,  I get about 75-80.  How does this effect calculating with the Rose Factor equation??

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Posted: 18 July 2008 12:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Just figure out how many size portions you want to serve using your guidelines (75-80), then determine how many tiers you need to bake.  The Rose Factor will remain unchanged.

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Posted: 18 July 2008 02:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Thank you again for this.  I am making a 4 tier cake plus backup (serving 200 guests).  I think I was just confused because when I measured out to determine the sizes (I am using a 16-12-9-6 (top for the bride) how many pieces I would get, my 16” base would serve up to 75 or so.  Rose’s says it would serve 150 slices, are those pretty small?  I measured 2"w x 3"d x 4” h (is that overserving?).  Thanks again!

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Posted: 18 July 2008 03:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Yes, Rose’s slices are normal where she lives, but are a bit too small for many.  I like to serve 1"w x2"d x4"h slices for weddings - slightly bigger for family gatherings (1x3x4).  Is the bride paying for this cake?  If so, let her determine how large the slices should be.  Also consider what time the reception is, what kind of food will be served, will other desserts be offered, etc.

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Posted: 18 July 2008 03:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I know people slice differently so I am guessing that I am overestimating my cake production and there will probably be extra left over.  The facility she is having it at will do the slicing, so their slice might be different than mine.  I offered this to her as her wedding gift from myself so she is estactic about that.  I think that is why there is added stress b/c if it turns out bad then I will feel horrible.  I have confidence that I can do it, but since it is the first one I think everyone feels a little stressed!  The meal is either a chicken or a beef and this is the only dessert with a scoop of ice cream, so that is why I tend to size them a bit larger.

My cakes are 3 layers of cake and 2 layers of mousse.  One flavor is chocolate butter cake with whipped ganache and chocolate mousse.  The other flavor is white cake with Bavarian cream (or lightened pastry cream, not sure b/c I have heard mixed reviews) with fresh strawberries.  You seem to have a lot of experience, do you have a recommendation between bavarian cream and pastry cream?  My bavarian is very gelatinous at when set but I think if the cake sits out for 1-2 hours before serving it will temper?

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Posted: 18 July 2008 03:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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cake slices as well as most foods has been supersized since cake bible was written in 1988!!!

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Posted: 18 July 2008 03:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I’m doing my 7th or 8th stacked cake in Aug (5 tiers).  I did tons of research before the first one, and I mean tons - read and watched everything I could get my hands on before my first attempt smile

Might be a good idea to ask the venue what size slices they cut wedding cakes into.  I haven’t worked with pastry cream or Bavarian cream as a filling in a large cake, and I probably wouldn’t because I think it might be too soft to hold up under the weight of the upper cake layers.  However, if I did attempt it, I would definitely make a thick buttercream dam to keep the pastry or bavarian cream from oozing out.  There are several more experienced wedding cake people on this forum - maybe one of them can address that concern.  If you chill the cake to well to keep the bavarian and/or pastry cream set, the butter cakes will be too firm to eat (Rose’s butter cakes should be eaten at room temp).  Serving a chilled cake would also make the ganache too hard to slice also.

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Posted: 18 July 2008 08:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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your bavarian cream should hold at room temp for several hours. being enrobed in buttercream will certainly help. as pat already mentioned, your cake must be at room temp in order to taste delicious. one of my most popular fillings is strawberries and cream, which is straight whipped cream, and i’ve never had a complaint about it watering out.

with regard to the tiers holding up; as long as each tier has proper support you should be able to make any filling work. i have made a 3 tier wedding cheesecake, served, outside on the 5th of july. it was sooooo soft, but it was never in danger of leaning or falling over. if you are worried about the structure drive a sharpened dowel ( i stick them right in the pencil sharpener) right thru the center of the cake into the base and smooth over the top layer.

i think the traditional wedding cake slices are 1 inch by 2 inches. pretty small, which is why you get so many out of a tier. maybe wedding cakes are measured small because most wedding cakes are, shall we say, less than delicious?  if you know what i mean…lol

good luck,
jen

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Posted: 18 July 2008 08:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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jen68 - 18 July 2008 11:21 PM

maybe wedding cakes are measured small because most wedding cakes are, shall we say, less than delicious?  if you know what i mean…lol. good luck,
jen

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Posted: 18 July 2008 08:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Jem68 - please tell me more about using whipped cream as a cake filling.  How far in advance can you fill the cake before the whipped cream starts to break down?

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Posted: 19 July 2008 04:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I usually make one of rose’s whipped cream recipes (i can’t remember which one, but it doesn’t use gelatin), the night before; add the strawberries, frost and fill the cake.  I like to leave a cake in the fridge overnight so that it is really firm.  I also make a thick dam of BC so that no filling escapes. BC will not go over whipped cream when frosting. It just slides around.  I never macerate the strawberries and sometimes I pat them with a paper towel so they will be as dry as possible.  If it does water out then the cake must absorb it because everyone tells me that it is delish. It’s been a while since I made one for myself.  I think the combo of the heavy frosting dam and the strawberries just holds it all together.

The only time I’ve ever had a problem was when I made a cookies and cream filling with oreo cookies. I over did it on the cookies and by the next day the cookies had absorbed all of the cream! It was still great tasting, but a bit dry.

Jen

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Posted: 19 July 2008 06:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Thanks smile.

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Posted: 20 July 2008 07:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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There is a lot of variation on the number of servings from a wedding cake.  Many bakers use the chart from Earlene Moore, who has a modified version of the chart on her website http://www.earlenescakes.com

It is a good idea to leave slicing instructions with the venue so you can ensure that your client gets what they’ve paid for.  If you are planning a 12/9/6 will serve 150, and the person doing the cutting at the venue normally cuts that configuration into 80 servings, some people aren’t going to get dessert!

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Posted: 23 July 2008 08:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Thank you everyone for your advice.  I have started my wedding cake process and have taken all the info given from you all.  Thanks a bunch and wish me luck! Steph

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Posted: 06 August 2008 03:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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jen68 - 18 July 2008 11:21 PM

your bavarian cream should hold at room temp for several hours. being enrobed in buttercream will certainly help. as pat already mentioned, your cake must be at room temp in order to taste delicious. 

I just want to mention, that even though they must be eaten at room temp, I made a cake for a my sil’s anniversary and had plenty left over since I made a lot more than we needed.  My other sil and mil and myslef could not stop eating it straight out of the fridge!!!  It tasted great and the chilled lemon curd and buttercream melted as you put in in your mouth.  Great for the heat we have in the Central Valley in Ca!  The bread did not seem stale at all (ofcourse we kept it wrapped).  Truly, Rose Levy’s cakes taste great chilled too!

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