Top 10 Baking Questions Answered.
I really love connecting with my customers, and have started getting lots of questions about the ‘how tos’ of baking and cake decorating.
Here are the top 10 I get asked……..
Why does my cake sink in the middle?
This can happen for a few reasons..
Sometimes the mix can be too wet, or more commonly there’s too much flour or dry ingredients.
It’s really important that you measure all your ingredients accurately, Be sure to properly measure your flour and to sift it.
Once it’s out of the oven…
A cake may look fully cooked, but when you take it out of the oven, if the middle sinks and is slightly sticky inside, it probably wasn’t!
To ensure it’s baked properly, insert a cake tester or skewer in the centre of the cake before removing it from the oven. If it comes out mostly clean/with no wet mix on it you’re done.
Opening the door too early……
This is an easy mistake to make, we have all done it! But, however tempted you may be – You shouldn’t open the door of the oven until the cake is more than halfway baked. And even then, it’s problematic if you keep opening the oven door every couple of minutes to check. By opening the oven door, you can interrupt the reactions that are kick-started by heat, these reactions are what cause a cake to rise correctly.
How do I stop my cake burning when the top is cooked but the middle is still baking?
If your cake needs more cooking time, you need to cover it with foil once to top is cooked, this is normally towards the end of the cooking time. Simply cover the cake with a large piece of foil and pinch the foil at the sides to ensure it’s sealed in, this will prevent the top from browning any more and enable your centre to finish cooking.
My Cake cracks on the top when I bake it, how do I stop this?
So, this can happen for a couple of reasons, firstly and most common is that your oven is too hot, especially if you have a fan oven. It’s best to turn your oven down around 10 degrees and cook for a bit longer, try and think….low and slow!
Make sure the cake tin you’re using is the correct size for the recipe, if you use a smaller tin than specified your tin will be over full causing the top to crack as it doesn’t have enough space to rise and bake.
How can I stop chocolate chips sinking to the bottom of my cake?
This can happen if the cake mix is too runny, so it’s worth always making sure you have a fairly stiff cake batter before folding through the chocolate chips and baking.
If you’re still finding they sink you can always turn the cake upside down before icing so the chips are at the top. (If in doubt cheat a bit!)
How can I make the perfect buttercream? I want it to be light and fluffy but still hold its shape?
I find the key to a perfect buttercream is in the time I spend whipping it up. I whip my butter first for a few minutes in a free standing mixer, so it’s creamy and won’t go lumpy when I add the icing sugar. I then add my icing sugar and beat together on a low speed until they are combined. Once combined, turn up the speed and leave it to beat for around 7-8 minutes, this should ensure a really light fluffy mix that can hold its shape once piped on or spread around a cake.
For a 6” Tall cake here are the quantities:
250g Butter at room temperature
480g-500g Icing Sugar.
How do I make a great Ganache?
Making a great Ganache can take a few tries to get it right, but once you’ve ‘got it’ you won’t look back!
It is made up of Whipping cream, and Chocolate. I tend to use 2 parts dark chocolate to one part dark chocolate. This makes it deep and velvety-perfect.
900gms of Dark Chocolate
450ml of Whipping Cream
- Break your chocolate up into small pieces and set aside.
- Heat your whipping cream to almost boiling.
- Stir in your chocolate chips, make sure they are all covered and let sit for a minute.
- Begin to stir with a wooden spoon until all chocolate is melted.
- Let the ganache sit until it’s the desired consistency you want.
So there we have it…..some of your questions answered. Keep the questions coming!
Comment below, or on my Facebook page, or better still on my YouTube channel.
Why not head to my YouTube Channel where you will find these tutorials:
Silicone Mould Tutorial http://bit.ly/2nv29Vy
How To Cover a Cake in Sugarpaste and Create Sharp Edges Tutorial http://bit.ly/2m2jXp7
Easy Fondant Flowers Tutorial http://bit.ly/2rjkc2T
Edible Wafer Paper Flower Tutorial http://bit.ly/2ql6LRj
How To Make Fondant Butterflies Tutorial http://bit.ly/2qkAXg7
Simple Fondant Roses Tutorial http://bit.ly/2riZdw1