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What a heartbreak!!! - Page 4

post #46 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by KuyaRomeo

Never intended this thread to be Scratch VS Box Mix. . . but since it has, I feel compelled to say a few things.

1. If you have never had a scratch cake that tasted better than your doctored cake mix, then perhaps you have met some untalented bakers, or you simply have learned to enjoy the taste of box mixes. I do believe that we (Americans) have been programmed to like high sodium and processed foods. For example: My parents love to eat at Applebee's, Chili's, and TGIF. I, on the other hand - can't stand the food at these places. The only taste I get is SALT. My parents believe salt = taste good. I prefer to taste the FOOD, with herbs and spices and savor the freshness of unprocessed food. I have no room in my stomach for a processed chicken breast stuffed with stove top stuffing. That's just me. But, I do understand that a very large part of the population has been trained to love this stuff.

I can taste a cake that was made with a mix instantly. I will spit it out. Perhaps my palette is over sensitive, as I can taste the chemically aftertaste and it's not pleasant. Even the moistness has a chemically feel to it. If I put buttercream in my mouth and I can taste Crisco, I will spit it out. I don't like it.

But, I do agree . . . a lot of people do like this. They were trained to LOVE it.

2. No matter how you shake it and roll it - YES, a good scratch baker takes far more talent than a cake mix baker. That's a no brainer. A good scratch baker takes years of experience, and training. It's much much harder than adding one cup of oil and one egg, and a box of pudding or jello . . and poof you have a cake. Scratch baking is VERY complicated.

3. Not everyone who bakes from scratch is good either. Scratch baking is chemistry. I have tasted many dry crumbly cakes from scratch bakers. It's not easy.

4. You will NEVER find a recipe that will change your mind about Scratch Baking, if you prefer the taste of box mix cakes. That is because a recipe does not MAKE a scratch baker. It is far more complicated than a list of ingredients and instructions. Scratch baking is a learned talent.

For example: Making a lemon cake - when adding a citrus (acid) what types of adjustments do you need to make to your ingredients to counter the acid? Do you modify your baking powder? baking soda? What about if you want to add a buttermilk to your cake for moisture and flavor. That is a sour, and chemically you need to balance out and adjust your other ingredients as well. There is a LOT of chemistry in scratch baking. And therefore YES, it is more work and talent then adding "one egg and a cup of oil" to a box mix, and then doctoring it up with artificial flavoring.

All of my cakes are not only from scratch, but they are original recipes. We don't use Paula Deen, Rachel Ray, Martha Stewart, Allton Brown, etc . . we use our very own test kitchen, combined with trial and error. Our lemon cake has ZERO lemon extract in it. Sure, it took several test runs to get the natural lemon flavor bursting the way we wanted to. Certainly you could have done that in a jiffy with a box mix and some extract . . or simply a lemon box mix. But at the end of the day, all you have is un-natural flavors created by chemicals. Our flavored cakes are recipes we have created and worked very hard to perfect.

Do I give you credit, when you use a box mix and some instant pudding, as being a talented baker? Nope. Not one bit. My sister and grandmother can do that. So can my neighbors 6 year old. I certainly don't want to pay for something when I can do it that easy at home. Therefore, I am hoping that your true talent comes in decorating, if not baking. I hope that what you are selling is your decorating talents . . or simply convenience talents. But baking talent? Mix gets no points in my book.

I am not trying to offend or put down anyone who makes cakes from a mix. As I said before . .my sister does it all the time. But I will never allow a mix to stand next to my scratch cake and be considered equal talent. Never.



thumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gif
I am a scratch baker working towards becoming a decorator, too Man, I hope practice really makes perfect
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I am a scratch baker working towards becoming a decorator, too Man, I hope practice really makes perfect
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post #47 of 57
This discussion reminds me of a book I read recently called "The End of Overeating", it was written by a former head of the FDA and looks at marketing practices from food industry insiders that take advantage of innate human cravings by adding multiple layers of sugar, fat, and salt to their products.

http://www.amazon.com/End-Overeating-Insatiable-American-Appetite/dp/B004NSVE32/ref=tmm_pap_title_0

Re the wording about people being "trained" to like processed food, I think that's backwards. By default people will gravitate towards foods that are attractive, easy to digest, and fulfill innate cravings as efficiently as possible (i.e. processed foods), this is hard-wired from evolution. You (or your parents when you're young) have to actively work against this evolutionary drive for cheap and easy calories to look for unprocessed alternatives, and if successful you will eventually train yourself to reject the path of least resistance, assuming you have the resources to continue with this type of diet since it is more expensive.
post #48 of 57
KuyaRomeo, Hang in there. It ain't easy being in this or any business right now. I'm not even going to address the scratch vs box issue. I do both, and I also don't give a flip what the shop down the street or the grocery store or whoever can do.... I'm only concerned with what I can do with my baking, decorating and survival. Mine is not a store front business but rather a custom made only business.

Are you located in an area that may not have the means to afford your prices? Not in a bad neighborhood but a town or city? A lot of times cost will win out over taste.

One thing you can do is place some of your products for sale in other businesses, local restaurants, cafe, coffee shop where you can also advertise. If the public doesn't know about you then it is your mission to see that they do.

Diversify your product line with some new things to keep people interested and wanting to see what you do next. Mini cheesecakes, muffins, cookies, tarts etc...

I prefer making wedding cakes so I hooked up with a caterer, florist, event planner that had "the people with money" connections long ago and they sent work to me. Make a connection.

Advertise the hell of your specialty, be it scratch, vegan, organic, whatever. A picture is worth a thousand words with decorating skills. A good website is an investment and Facebook is free.

These are some ideas I thought might help you and I hope they do.
If you can't find time it do it right..how will you find time to do it over?
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If you can't find time it do it right..how will you find time to do it over?
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post #49 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by BizCoCos

I don't know about other countries but we Americans eat so much processed foods, I wonder if all these allergies from gluten to dairy is a direct or at the very least a consequence of this type of diet. Scratch is the way for me and no I don't mill the flour and have the chickens that lay the eggs, lol.



I've always wondered about this.

The first time I read about people being allergic to gluten was here on CC. I am not from the US of A, and all my life living in this country, I've never met a single living person here who is allergic to gluten, nor have my friends or relatives (that I know of). I know people who suffer from celiac disease are allergic to gluten but that disease is rarely heard of here, though I'm not discounting the fact that there may be people with that disease here but the point is, it's almost unheard of.

So I always wonder whenever I read about cakers on CC mentioning about the need to cater for GF cakes for their customers (and I've seen many posts like that) how come it is more common to that part of the world that the other parts. I stand corrected, btw..
post #50 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclaren

So I always wonder whenever I read about cakers on CC mentioning about the need to cater for GF cakes for their customers (and I've seen many posts like that) how come it is more common to that part of the world that the other parts. I stand corrected, btw..


That's a great question and I don't think anyone knows for sure. It is probably a number of factors -- the typical American diet may contain more gluten than other diets in other countries, Celiac and gluten sensitivity is not well-known in many areas and may go undiagnosed (the symptoms can vary widely from person to person and present as other diseases), or the culprit could be the increased use of pesticides or sensitivities to different strains of genetically modified wheat.
post #51 of 57
Bravo Kuya and the rest for the responses to scratch baking. I have said this before. FromScratch and me are probably close in our baking skills and even our methods, likes, and dislikes. Just look at our two websites.

But I have no problem not only praising her for her nothing less than artistic decorations. I also have no problem saying that I will drive along beside her in the marathon and offer her a bottled water. I did not study it, I have not tried to perfect it, and I am in no way anywhere in the same ballpark as her talents. How did she get there? The same way she and I both perfected our scratch baking.

Sorry guys, but great scratch baking is an art. Some of us have gotten there and some are aspiring to be there. Box mixes have pictures on the back because you don't even have to read. My children made them at three and four years old. But after that, they were taught gluten development, leavener science, science of the egg and its role in baking, how to temper eggs, you get it. By 13, my oldest was prepping yeast bread after school for family meals. We approach our savory cooking with as much passion.

Please don't tell us how stupid or full of ourselves we are as GOURMET scratch baker, taught from the best, if you don't want to hear the facts. Fact: Scratch baking taken to the level of gourmet is at the top of the baking hierarchy. Fact: Box mixes, especially with added pudding and Jello, are at the absolute bottom of the baking hierarchy. Opinion: People's individual taste.

Jason's post was very good at getting to the point of processed foods.

This country is trending to demanding better food and to be aware of what is in our food. Also, boutique gourmet bakeries are making their way into more and more areas all the time. It is a growing industry. There have been a majority of areas that have had no choice but box baking with shortening frosting. This is changing daily. The internet is making people aware of what is in baked goods and scratch bakers work hard to set themselves apart from their processed competitors, clearly marketing their difference. What worked in the past, duping people into thinking Crisco is buttercream, selling a box mix at a premium price, will slowly become more difficult because thanks to the web, we can choose to educate ourselves on any subject, including choices in cupcakes.

I have a small project started. It is a questionaire geared to the general public about what they think is in bakery goods? Scratch, box, for example. Plus the big one... what are the ingredients in that fluffy bakery frosting? My daughter is starting it as a project that she will later use in college. I plan to publish the findings. The bakery industry, long given the ability to deceive because of no label, needs an overhaul in disclosure. Fortunately, more and more areas are requiring labels and governments are cracking down on unhealthy food practices. We are becoming an informed society and as better products become available, many consumers are making the decision to choose quality, especially when the prices are similar.
post #52 of 57
To KuyaRomano,

Congratulations on your new business venture. My business has changed considerably from where I envisioned it. But we all have to plan, and then be very quick to adjust our methods to the demands of the market. You obviously have done that. Your business model was a good one. You found a way to overcome that $100K investment. So what if you have to make a few changes. Once the dust settles and you get into your business groove, you can then look to expansion and offer some of the things that are so close to your heart. You will learn your market and you can make adjustments. Or, you can be so successful with your present niche that you will just retire rich. Good luck and keep us posted. Susan
post #53 of 57
Processed foods usually contain some form of MSG. monosoduim glutamate .There are more than 40 ingredients that contain some amount of MSG. There may be more than 10 ingredients in that processed snack cake or cookie that contain MSG. MSG and aspartame are Neurotransmiters. Basically they make you crave more . Ever heard of people with a diet soda addiction ?
My point even if its doesnt taste better eat enough and your brain is tricked into craving more. Manufacters add preservatives for shelf life but the same ones cause you to crave them. putting more money into those manufacters pockets.
post #54 of 57
This is not a post trying to make an argument ....please lets stop now....and thanks for the recipe I shall try it.....and as far as bakers.....I do my own baking and always have so you are insulting me no one else....which is fine.....lets not get petty...I will let ya know how the cake turns out
Georgine
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Georgine
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post #55 of 57
First time posting here. Usually i just soak in the knowledge.

In my 22 years of life I have NEVER ever had a cake made out of a box or mix. Im pretty sure if i went to the supermarket to try and buy one there would only be chocolate flavour or vanilla and only one brand to choose from. it would also be so expensive.

At every birthday/function/party or just sunday night at home ive ever been to the cake/biscuits (cookies to Americans)/anything served at the function has been homemade ie eggs, flour, sugar, butter etc. the most that would be pre done or cooked would be tinned tomatoes. Same as dinner never in my life have had frozen or pre cooked anything, then again that stuff is so expensive.

Not to mention if i turned up anywhere or tried to serve anything from a box mix or that i didnt mix, measure and do everything id get the strangest looks haha. people would think im crazy. no one i know has ever had a box mix anything... we cant even buy cookie dough!!

I love hearing about what different cultures and countries have available... or dont. I was brought up beating the crap out of butter and sugar with a wooden spoon, adding eggs etc and my arm dying of pain to make that birthday cake or thankyou muffins etc.

I guess box/mix stuff is for you if you grew up with it. me, i could never afford it and didnt no such a thing existed till reading this site 1 year ago haha.

I love learnig that "funfetti" mix is in this world!!

Fom a small town in New Zealand icon_biggrin.gif btw i hope no one takes this as trying to b better or anything of the such....more that everywhere things are different esp in NZ haha
post #56 of 57
Thread Starter 
I wish I could give points to this post . .it made my day icon_smile.gif


Quote:
Originally Posted by jaime01

First time posting here. Usually i just soak in the knowledge.

In my 22 years of life I have NEVER ever had a cake made out of a box or mix. Im pretty sure if i went to the supermarket to try and buy one there would only be chocolate flavour or vanilla and only one brand to choose from. it would also be so expensive.

At every birthday/function/party or just sunday night at home ive ever been to the cake/biscuits (cookies to Americans)/anything served at the function has been homemade ie eggs, flour, sugar, butter etc. the most that would be pre done or cooked would be tinned tomatoes. Same as dinner never in my life have had frozen or pre cooked anything, then again that stuff is so expensive.

Not to mention if i turned up anywhere or tried to serve anything from a box mix or that i didnt mix, measure and do everything id get the strangest looks haha. people would think im crazy. no one i know has ever had a box mix anything... we cant even buy cookie dough!!

I love hearing about what different cultures and countries have available... or dont. I was brought up beating the crap out of butter and sugar with a wooden spoon, adding eggs etc and my arm dying of pain to make that birthday cake or thankyou muffins etc.

I guess box/mix stuff is for you if you grew up with it. me, i could never afford it and didnt no such a thing existed till reading this site 1 year ago haha.

I love learnig that "funfetti" mix is in this world!!

Fom a small town in New Zealand icon_biggrin.gif btw i hope no one takes this as trying to b better or anything of the such....more that everywhere things are different esp in NZ haha
The King of Pops
TC Pops, A Division of Teddy Cakes, LLC

http://tcpops.com
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The King of Pops
TC Pops, A Division of Teddy Cakes, LLC

http://tcpops.com
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post #57 of 57
Quote:
Quote:

I have a small project started. It is a questionaire geared to the general public about what they think is in bakery goods? Scratch, box, for example. Plus the big one... what are the ingredients in that fluffy bakery frosting? My daughter is starting it as a project that she will later use in college. I plan to publish the findings. The bakery industry, long given the ability to deceive because of no label, needs an overhaul in disclosure. Fortunately, more and more areas are requiring labels and governments are cracking down on unhealthy food practices. We are becoming an informed society and as better products become available, many consumers are making the decision to choose quality, especially when the prices are similar.



I like your idea and completely agree, I have been trying to perfect a fat free, low sugar strawberry muffin recipe, filled with FF cream cheese (I am down to 81.5 calories per muffin and 0.5 grams of fat, almost there). A local daycare wants me to put out a sample of something with the coffee they serve to the parents along with my portfolio. The owner is super excited but I am still perfecting my recipe. I spend time putting the ingredients into a nutritional counter before I even bake it, maybe it's a bit backwards but if I just throw the original recipe together prior to checking it's nutritional content, why bother if it doesn't meet my goals? America has become the laughing stock because of its nutritional behaviors, I would really like to see what the outcome is scp1127.
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