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They lied?

post #1 of 145
Thread Starter 
I am doing some research of bakeries in my area for pricing, quality, etc. in order to see what competition is out there. I do not have a cake business but want to start researching the possibility of opening one in a couple of years. So, I ordered a cake from a well-known and well-liked bakery in a nearby town. When I ordered the cake in their shop, I asked specifically if they bake from scratch and the girl taking my order said "yes" without any hesitation at all.

A week later, I picked up the cake (not impressed with the decorating, but that is another topic!) and tasted it. I am convinced that it is from a box. Maybe doctored, but based on a box mix. Now, I don't want to argue whether box baking is good or not. I bake from scratch and don't mind that others bake from a box. But I can't believe that they lied to me about it. Do bakeries actually do that? Flat out lie when asked a direct question? Maybe I am naive, but I didn't expect that at all...
post #2 of 145
I've told this story before, but I used to use the kitchen of a restaurant that had a bakery counter, and they claimed they were a "scratch" bakery. Oh, well, all their cakes started with Duncan Hines, but they claimed to be "scratch" on the basis of them mixing and baking the cakes on site. They didn't think they were lying. The right question to ask, is, "do you use a mix".

There are very few true scratch bakeries. It's just not cost effective for most business models.
post #3 of 145
Perhaps she was thinking that the cakes are baked on the premises, as opposed to shipped in frozen from a distributor. So maybe to her they are from scratch. I know it's a stretch, but who knows.
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the optimist expects it to change;
the realist adjusts the sails.
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The pessimist complains about the wind;
the optimist expects it to change;
the realist adjusts the sails.
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post #4 of 145
They probably lied about it, and they know very well that they don't bake from scratch if there's a mix involved. Most production bakeries use mixes in one form or another for consistency or whatever reason, but if someone asks they should tell the truth...Sometimes if you ask people if they use a mix they'll say no even if they do, so they know they're lying about it. (at least some of the bakeries in my area do that.)
post #5 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmstreepey

When I ordered the cake in their shop, I asked specifically if they bake from scratch and the girl taking my order said "yes" without any hesitation at all.


You may want to try getting a more authoritative answer from the owner of the business or at least the baker as opposed to a retail clerk.

Baking from scratch means different things to different people, so you probably don't want to jump to the conclusion that they lied to you just yet. To me scratch vs. mix is really more of a spectrum depending on how much preparation has been done for you when you purchase the ingredients, I doubt anyone here is truly a 100% scratch baker (milling your own flour, etc).
post #6 of 145
It's been my expierence that they do lie about that. I have even gone so far as to break it down and ask after they yes,"So you mean you actually measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract" and they say "YES", and it's a mix. Every single time, they say yes, and you know it's from a mix.
post #7 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

It's been my expierence that they do lie about that. I have even gone so far as to break it down and ask after they yes,"So you mean you actually measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract" and they say "YES", and it's a mix. Every single time, they say yes, and you know it's from a mix.



I often use a doctored mix, and I still " measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract". I just add those things to my mix.

Like everyone said there are varying ideas of what it means to be scratch.
post #8 of 145
Dang! I don't mill my own flour. Guess I'm a liar.
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
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"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
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post #9 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vista

Quote:
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

It's been my expierence that they do lie about that. I have even gone so far as to break it down and ask after they yes,"So you mean you actually measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract" and they say "YES", and it's a mix. Every single time, they say yes, and you know it's from a mix.



I often use a doctored mix, and I still " measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract". I just add those things to my mix.

Like everyone said there are varying ideas of what it means to be scratch.



But if I ask you if you bake from sctatch or use a mix base, and you answer, no, I don't use a base mix, and then I even elaborate what I mean by scratch, and you still insist it's all scratch, your a liar. I think everyone knows what people are asking when they ask "Do you bake from scratch"? They want to know if you use a mix, period. YOu can sugar coat it and doctor the mix up all you want, the question is do you bake from scratch. That is why every now and then you see on here a thread that says "They ask if I bake from scratch, but I use a mix, what should I say", cause those that use a mix know what people mean when their are asked do they bake from scratch. Now I am going to leave what you said alone. I was answering the OP's question and yes, bakeries lie about what they use.
post #10 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

I was answering the OP's question and yes, bakeries lie about what they use.



Yep.
post #11 of 145
It's not enough to just mill the flour though, you actually have to grow the grains first if you want to truly bake from scratch.
I also make my own butter from the cow I keep in the garage, shhhh don't tell the HOA.
post #12 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by pieceofcaketx

It's not enough to just mill the flour though, you actually have to grow the grains first if you want to truly bake from scratch.
I also make my own butter from the cow I keep in the garage, shhhh don't tell the HOA.



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post #13 of 145
Jeepers freaking creepers! Mill our own flour to call it scratch? That is ridiculous...and yes, I bake from scratch no mix involved. I don't however use flourescent yellow sleeve fillings and call them "homemade lemon curd" like my competition does. There is a huge difference between opening a box of mix and cracking a few eggs and tossing in this and that, then there is figuring out the exact chemistry of a scratch cake. LOTS of people chronically complain on here about "bad recipes" just because they can't figure out how to bake from scratch. It's technique.

"A bad craftsman blames his tools (or recipes)"
post #14 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by kellertur

Jeepers freaking creepers! Mill our own flour to call it scratch? That is ridiculous...and yes, I bake from scratch no mix involved. I don't however use flourescent yellow sleeve fillings and call them "homemade lemon curd" like my competition does. There is a huge difference between opening a box of mix and cracking a few eggs and tossing in this and that, then there is figuring out the exact chemistry of a scratch cake. LOTS of people chronically complain on here about "bad recipes" just because they can't figure out how to bake from scratch. It's technique.

"A bad craftsman blames his tools (or recipes)"



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post #15 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vista

Quote:
Originally Posted by QTCakes1

It's been my expierence that they do lie about that. I have even gone so far as to break it down and ask after they yes,"So you mean you actually measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract" and they say "YES", and it's a mix. Every single time, they say yes, and you know it's from a mix.



I often use a doctored mix, and I still " measure the flour, break open your eggs, pour some actual milk, and add real vanilla extract". I just add those things to my mix.

Like everyone said there are varying ideas of what it means to be scratch.



But if I ask you if you bake from sctatch or use a mix base, and you answer, no, I don't use a base mix, and then I even elaborate what I mean by scratch, and you still insist it's all scratch, your a liar. I think everyone knows what people are asking when they ask "Do you bake from scratch"? They want to know if you use a mix, period. YOu can sugar coat it and doctor the mix up all you want, the question is do you bake from scratch. That is why every now and then you see on here a thread that says "They ask if I bake from scratch, but I use a mix, what should I say", cause those that use a mix know what people mean when their are asked do they bake from scratch. Now I am going to leave what you said alone. I was answering the OP's question and yes, bakeries lie about what they use.



I completely agree with you. While I do bake alot from scratch, NO MIX, I do often use a doctored mix. I know people that think if they do not follow directions on a label they think they are doing it from scratch. While I disagree with their logic, that doesn't change the fact that others do see it that way.

I do not consider myself a baker. While I do bake from scratch, I generally have to follow a recipe word for word. I do not have the level of expertise to be able to add and take away to achieve a desired result (not that I haven't tried icon_redface.gif ). My sister SWEARS that she only cooks from scratch, but will use things like canned cream of mushroom or celery (maybe not the best example, but the first thing that came to mind). That to me is not cooking from scratch.
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