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Posts by BakingIrene

Another reason to bake my own...I just can't stomach the idea of people using stuff like computer paper (stored goodness only know how in a dusty open pack) and baby wipes on FOOD.   Whatever happened to mixing icing to the consistency that permits smoothing immediately after application?   Whatever happened to simply putting enough icing onto the cake so that you could smooth it with a sanitized metal spatula?   Looks like online resources have dumbed down...
Jason has given you the exact answer for this specific case. You CAN avoid this happening again.   You had 18 emails??? You wasted 16 email opportunities to say that ONLY a deposit can hold her order.  I'm sorry but you have to learn to put that kind of info right up front. You should also state that your prices are fixed.  Then ask the customer in email #2, "did you read terms and conditions?' and "do you agree to terms and conditions?"   Until the answer to both those...
You can always advise the person ordering the cake to have a small all-white no-nut kitchen cake.  When the guest asks for nut-free, they will still be able to share in the party goodies.  Waiver aside, the host should expect such off-the-cuff requests in a group of 100 people.   I am fine with baking nut-free cake as long as it is requested ahead of time.  With a large number of kids, I bake a nut-free chocoalte cake and nobody has trouble...the kids want to eat leftover...
If you want to mix batter ahead, you can add the baking powder at the last minute before baking.  Keep out 1/4 cup flour and the baking powder, mix them together first, and then fold them into one batch of cake batter by hand.   If the recipe calls for whipped eggs, on the other hand, you have to put the batter into the pans right after mixing.  It can then sit for a few hours but I would not try to keep it any longer.
  Stork (good quality margarine) is perfectly good for making icing.   The cocoa is absorbing some of the water present in the stork.   So you need to add cream or water or corn syrup or some other liquid until the consistency is soft enough to stick to the cake.   Melted chocoalte might be doing something similar, I would fix it the same way.
Butter comes from a cow.   Margarine is made from plant oils.   That is why the prices are different.   They are formulated with the same water content (give or take a %) so that you can substitute them 1 for 1 in most recipes.  Including icing.
OK so for your next step,  please look for instructions how to dowel the cakes so that they sit nicely.  Use the CC search or google "cake dowel support" and use what they suggest.
When you build cake tiers, you must use supports inside.  That way the cake sits on supports and does not squish the cake(s) underneath.   Please do a CC or google search for "cake dowel support" and follow the links.  You can stop worrying about the softness of the cake or the filling when you use proper supports.
OK well you seem to be very sure of what you want to use, like a "tough" filling.   There is very little we can do to help you because we don't know which "tough" icing recipe you used.   Most of us make a three tier cake stable by using dowels in each tier, so that cake sits on supports and NOT on cake.  That way we can use ganache and other "soft" materials on the cakes, that tastes less sweet and works OK under fondant.   There are many places on Cake...
Bake a round or oval cake in two layers.  Let one pan have a little more batter, so that it bakes into a natural dome.  Use that for the basket top without any carving or fuss.   Then do the basketweave icing on the side as the Wilton link shows.    Make buttercream flowers from stiff icing and freeze them.Pile as many frozen  flowers on top of the cake as you can fit, and then add green leaves wherever you can.
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