Hi there. I have a pound cake dilemma: my pound cakes come out with a very dense, gummy texture on the bottom of the pound cake. It tastes fine, but it’s gummy. I have done this both with the indicated directions and with beating a lot more than normal, figuring the cake structure needed strengthening. The top isn’t as high as it should be, and dips around 1/4 of the way into the pan and then flares out on the edges of the pan.
No ingredient substitutions for the eggs. I’m using the recipie in the Cake Bible with the double vanilla variation. The effect of this variation is to scald the milk in the vanilla pod and steep it in the hot milk. The milk did not get anywhere near boiling; there were only small bubbles around the edges. As for the flour, I’m using cake flour as indicated. I’m from the US, so the flour should react properly. The pans are, if memory serves, either 0.25 or 0.5 inches larger than the recipie calls for - I couldn’t easily find the exact sized pans. I think it was 0.25 each way. They are glass loaf pans, and I’m baking at 350 deg. F. The batter when into the pan immediately after beating, and then from there into the oven. To show the picture, I will resort to the dreaded ASCII art. The inner ring is the sunken portion, the xxxx is the risen top, and the outer edge indicating the pan is flared out again:
I’m sorry, I don’t have any experience using glass pans for this kind of cake. I always use metal pans (and, eeek, not one of Rose’s recipes, LOL!)
I do know that I’ve been happiest with recipes that call for an oven temp of 325, basically a low and slow approach.
Some dim and fuzzy part of my memory seems to want to remind me of how to adjust an oven temp when using a glass pan, I know I’ve read it somewhere before, but I’m coming up blank. (Can’t seem to find it in TCB, either, not that it isn’t there, just that I can’t find it.)
I can’t help thinking that the glass pan might be part of the issue. Maybe someone knowledgeable will chime in with more info.
I’m unsure on my oven’s temperature accuracy. My oven thermometer can’t be easily read with the oven closed, so I’m mainly presuming on the temperature being right and relying on the toothpick / cake tester to indicate doneness. Other cakes fall on the high end of the reccommended time range before testing out properly.
RBOEHME- whenever i get gummy-bottom cake i obviously find that i placed the pan on the heavy baking tray, not directly on the oven rack. repeating the same recipe with the tray removed seems to be the solution for me.
I used to get this problem when I first using the two-stage (one-bowl) method. The problem had two forms: (a) gummy layer and (b) gummy spots.
Here are the things that seem to have made a difference for me:
1. Baking to the upper range of the stated baking time. This seems to have taken care of gummy spots.
2. Making sure that I stop to scrape my mixer in between mixing stages. I think the usual division in RLV’s CB is 1.5 min, 20 sec, 20 sec, 20 sec - after the first 1.5 min and the second 20 sec interval, I scrape the bottom of the bowl and my beater to make sure the ingredients are well incorporated. No gummy layers since doing it this way.
3. Oh, the big one: I may have used unbleached AP flour when I was first trying the two-stage method, but I don’t remember. I have since used cake flour or a combination of cake flour and bleached AP in conjunction with (1) and (2) and I don’t have this problem anymore.
Julius- great findings! using the hand mixer in 2-stage method can lead to shocking result if the batter is not THOROUGHLY mixed(point#2 in your posting). and a “heavy” flour just adds fuel to the fire(point#3).
weighing i/o measuring by volume is also a good idea.
I bought my wife a scale and a couple of Rose’s books for Christmas. This was the first recipe we tried. (We also made pop overs and Scone’s and dough is rising for some biscuits to cook tomorrow.) We used a glass pan and the cake texture came out perfect. Ours was the Lemon poppy version. It was a little too lemony, but I didn’t really measure the lemon juice very well. We did line the pan with wax paper as we didn’t have any parchment on hand and we greased and floured it. I am wondering if the cake is having trouble climbing up the glass wall of the pan. Did you grease and flour the pan or use something like baker’s Joy? Did you line the pan with anything? Those are my suggestions, along with getting an oven thermometer and checking to make sure it is getting hot enough.