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Cake Tasting
Posted: 16 April 2009 09:47 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Patricia,
I agree about the texture of Dede Wilson’s cake. I know you did the Lemon…I did her Yellow Cake. Somehow the texture (more Velvety?) makes it seem more moist than the White Velvet I made of Rose’s. I’m wondering if it is the mixing process that does this. What do you think? The pans I’m using are the Pfeil and Holing pans. Very nice. By the way, when I do a test cake of Rose’s recipe, I just do 1 -6” layer using the basic cake (no Rose factors needed) right? These three Basic cakes are the ones you use as your Wedding cakes, yes? So when you say the Chocolate Fudge Cake, is that not the Basic Chocolate cake recipe? If I am not understanding correctly, please let me know as I am following your exemplary lead. Can the Rose factor be used on all the cakes in the Cake Bible?

One other question, please. When you read Dede Wilson’s book about making your own Wedding Cake, her timing for the cakes and Buttercreams are different than Rose’s.  Rose says you can freeze these things for much longer than Dede says. What is your experience? Also, you say you NEVER syrup the cakes? I don’t have any experience with this, although “They” all talk of doing this.
I do notice that literally the day after I make a Rose cake it seems much dryer. 

My husband visited my daughter in North Carolina last week, and I baked a sample White Cake for her, plain. I wrapped it very securely in plastic and tin foil, and told her that she MUST taste it as soon as they got the cake home. She really liked the taste, but said it crumbled when she cut into it. The plane could have zapped the moisture….also I might have over-baked it a bit. At 30 minutes, a toothpick was still wet in the middle, although the sides were done. Since it was 6 inches I didn’t use the strips.

Anyway, I look forward to hearing your answers. Truly, I have become obsessed! Claudia

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Posted: 16 April 2009 11:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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OMG! I just made a sample cake 6” of the Yellow cake Basic chart…the cake rose beautifully and browned evenly, but the center sunk! I used 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder and used measuring spoons. Should I have weighed this? The cake came to the top of the 2 inch pan.  It tastes great….but do you think it was the baking powder. I used the right amount for 1-6 inch test cake from the basic recipe,didn’t I Patricia.  All else I was super careful of. confused downer

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Posted: 16 April 2009 01:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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tofusalem - 16 April 2009 12:47 PM

Patricia,
I agree about the texture of Dede Wilson’s cake. I know you did the Lemon…I did her Yellow Cake. Somehow the texture (more Velvety?) makes it seem more moist than the White Velvet I made of Rose’s. I’m wondering if it is the mixing process that does this. What do you think? The pans I’m using are the Pfeil and Holing pans. Very nice. By the way, when I do a test cake of Rose’s recipe, I just do 1 -6” layer using the basic cake (no Rose factors needed) right? These three Basic cakes are the ones you use as your Wedding cakes, yes? So when you say the Chocolate Fudge Cake, is that not the Basic Chocolate cake recipe? If I am not understanding correctly, please let me know as I am following your exemplary lead. Can the Rose factor be used on all the cakes in the Cake Bible?

One other question, please. When you read Dede Wilson’s book about making your own Wedding Cake, her timing for the cakes and Buttercreams are different than Rose’s.  Rose says you can freeze these things for much longer than Dede says. What is your experience? Also, you say you NEVER syrup the cakes? I don’t have any experience with this, although “They” all talk of doing this.
I do notice that literally the day after I make a Rose cake it seems much dryer. 

My husband visited my daughter in North Carolina last week, and I baked a sample White Cake for her, plain. I wrapped it very securely in plastic and tin foil, and told her that she MUST taste it as soon as they got the cake home. She really liked the taste, but said it crumbled when she cut into it. The plane could have zapped the moisture….also I might have over-baked it a bit. At 30 minutes, a toothpick was still wet in the middle, although the sides were done. Since it was 6 inches I didn’t use the strips.

Anyway, I look forward to hearing your answers. Truly, I have become obsessed! Claudia

I’m really not that experienced… I’m just a home baker like you.  I like your description of Dede’s cake texture… I agree, it was very velvety.  I don’t know if the difference is attributed to the mixing or the actual ratio of ingredients, but I was pleased.  Rose’s cakes are more tender.  The chocolate fudge cake is different that Rose’s chocolate rose factor cake recipe.  I have never used it for a wedding cake, but I have baked it in an 11x15 (whole recipe), and that works well.  I haven’t used Rose’s “factor” for recipes other than the ones she specifies.  I’ve only frozen cake layers a couple of times, for short amounts of time, and only after wrapping extremely, extremely, extremely well.  I have frozen both the berry purees and many of the buttercreams with great success. 

Did you use magi-cake strips for the cake your daughter sampled?  I highly recommend them.

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Posted: 16 April 2009 01:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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tofusalem - 16 April 2009 02:31 PM

OMG! I just made a sample cake 6” of the Yellow cake Basic chart…the cake rose beautifully and browned evenly, but the center sunk! I used 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder and used measuring spoons. Should I have weighed this? The cake came to the top of the 2 inch pan.  It tastes great….but do you think it was the baking powder. I used the right amount for 1-6 inch test cake from the basic recipe,didn’t I Patricia.  All else I was super careful of. confused downer

Using measuring spoons shouldn’t have affected this recipe enough to make the cake sink in the center.  Did you bake one 6” cake layer or two?

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Posted: 16 April 2009 02:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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I baked one 6 inch layer…I used the amounts on the chart for the Basic Cake, plus 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder. I think using the chart amounts just for the Yellow Base Cake (page 492) makes 379 grams, vs. the Master Chart for Buttercakes (490) where each 6 inch layer is 356 grams. I used all the batter in the pan(379) is that why it stays wet in the middle too long, hence I overbake it to compensate? I guess my thinking was that this was the amount to use for the one test 6 inch cake. Am I a total dummy?

Oh, I didn’t use the cake strips because I thought it wasn’t necessary for a 6 inch. Do you use them for all sizes?

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Posted: 16 April 2009 02:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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Yep, you’d multiply the rose factor by 2 to make two 6” layers (as the chart on 490 states), so half of that, 1 1/2 teaspoon, would be the correct amount for one 6” layer.  The gram difference you mentioned is minuscule and won’t affect your baking time.  More importantly, are you using insulated cake strips around your cake pan?  Do you have a thermometer in your oven?  How long are you preheating your oven?  What position in the oven are you placing your cake pan(s)?  Is your baking powder fresh?

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Posted: 16 April 2009 02:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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yes to everything except the cake strips. As I mentioned previously, I didn’t think I would need it for a 6 inch layer. Do you use it for one that small anyway?

Also can I add melted chocolate to the buttercream I previously mad after it comes to room temperature? I would melt the chocolate, cool it and then beat it in to the room temperature buttercream?

Thanks Patricia. You’re my Wedding Cake Guardian Angel! You are certainly more than an at home baker because you now have a wealth of experience to help newbies like me! Newbie to Rose and Wedding cakes that is!

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Posted: 16 April 2009 03:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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tofusalem - 16 April 2009 05:59 PM

yes to everything except the cake strips. As I mentioned previously, I didn’t think I would need it for a 6 inch layer. Do you use it for one that small anyway?

Also can I add melted chocolate to the buttercream I previously mad after it comes to room temperature? I would melt the chocolate, cool it and then beat it in to the room temperature buttercream?

Thanks Patricia. You’re my Wedding Cake Guardian Angel! You are certainly more than an at home baker because you now have a wealth of experience to help newbies like me! Newbie to Rose and Wedding cakes that is!

Yes, you can add chocolate the way you mentioned.  Rose specifies amounts in the cake bible (5 ounces of melted and cooled chocolate to 4 1/2 cups mousseline). 
Yes also to your question concerning baking strips.  I use them for all butter cakes, regardless of the size.

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Posted: 16 April 2009 04:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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You know I was just looking at Dede Wilson’s recipe for Essential Yellow cak, 2-6 inch layers, vs. Rose’s Base Yellow cake Remember I said Dede’s cake wasn’t as tall? Well she uses 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder for 2 6 inch layers and Rose for 2-6 inch layers uses 3 teaspoons! Double!. Rose uses 2 cups of cake flour for2-6 inch, Dede uses 1 1/2. I guess there is just less batter for the Wilson cake. With that said I really like Wilson’s texture better.

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Posted: 16 April 2009 04:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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I liked Wilson’s lemon cake very much, so I will try a few more of her recipes.

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Posted: 16 April 2009 04:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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I think I’m going to try and make Rose’s Yellow cake again, but move away from the 2 steps and do the Wilson way…as I was taught. By creaming the butter and getting it to the pale stage, I think the cake might benefit and have that texture we both like. It’s worth a try. For years I’ve been doing it that way and I’ve never had a problem.  Also, I was adding up the baking powder per Roses factors for the 2-6 inch and 2-9 inch cakes. It comes to 5 and 2/3 teaspoons, which is 2 tablespoons + 1 2/3 teaspoons.  I was going to use her 3 Tier Yellow cake, that combines the layers in batches. On the chart(484) The baking powder for the 2-6 and 2-9 inch layers equal 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons. That’s a difference of 1/3 teaspoon. I would think that would make a difference. I don’t know which way I should go with this cake. I’d love to just do the “proven” recipe. I know you do the Rose Factor because you’ve not done the 6,9,12. What do you think?

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Posted: 16 April 2009 05:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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i would never make a test cake or tasting custom to order!!!!!!!  it is a cake test not a custom cake order.

what patrincia did, is such a great idea, just present the components separately, and have the customer “assemble” their own cake and taste it.

on a bakery situation, where the cake samples are done ahead of time (maybe once or every two months and freeze), i would just stick to these samples, and from these, customers can ‘suggest’ a different combination from the existing flavors, and the chef can agree or gear the request away.

when i did Rose’s World Cake, my cake tasting was showing my pictures on my computer.  Katie picked her favorite cakes (by looking and by hearing how i described the tastes).  Then i offered dinner, and through dinner, i picked more information of what Katie likes to eat.  It was a huge hit, we showcased local mangoes and passion fruit and coconut crust, and we drew the world since the guests were from all over the world.  nobody complained about the taste, and perhaps i have a feeling that wedding cake tasting is part of the bridezilla movement =)

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Posted: 16 April 2009 09:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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hectorwong - 16 April 2009 01:20 AM

good job patrincia, that is a lot of work. 

at my weekend bakery job, we do tastings with actual sliced cake, not just cake and frosting separate.  We make sheets of cakes with frosting, slice into 2x1 inch (small serving), and thaw as needed.

i yet have to do a cake tasting on my own, although i think my desire is freedom!

I always wondered how bakeries did their tastings. I did the same thing for my brother’s wedding cake tasting as Patricia did. At the time I thought I must be the only crazy person who went through all this trouble. My brother and sister-in-law were very impressed and said it made choosing a lot easier. I guess it was worth it in the end. Patricia your presentation was waaaaay better.

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