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Why do my cakes look like this???...

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Hi Cakers!

Please help me find out why my round cakes never have a completely round top edge. They always look like the picture below.

I use Sharon's Zambito BC recipe. I use a foam core cake circle as a guide for my bench scraper so I can get even sides. I use the method Sharon Zambito uses to take the excess icing off the top with a spatula. This weekend I hot glued a small level on the spatula AND a ruler to be sure that I am keeping it straight when taking the excess top off. Well....this is what I get....

Suggestions.....


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post #2 of 22
You just need to polish off the sides after you get to this stage with the top. You have pushed a tiny bit of icing over onto the side. Run the scraper around the side one more time and the excess will come off.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BakingIrene

You just need to polish off the sides after you get to this stage with the top. You have pushed a tiny bit of icing over onto the side. Run the scraper around the side one more time and the excess will come off.




OMG! That was almost to simple!!! LOL

That makes so much sense. Let me try this again.

I really appreciate the response.
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post #4 of 22
My tops always look like that too! I have such a hard time having them look like perfect circles on top. They always look lopsided icon_cry.gif
post #5 of 22
This is a great youtube tutorial with a method that can really help. Sort of, if the sides are right, so goes the top:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgrXxYLm0Sk

The whole video is great--and some of the techniques can be applied to any spreadable icing. You can really see the tool & technique starting at 6:48

HTH
Rae
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I love you, but your emergency is not my crisis!

They say that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.--Terry Pratchett (b.194
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post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by BlakesCakes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgrXxYLm0Sk



Fail. The cake is still bald after 15+ minutes! (and if "bald" didn't matter under ganache, then why spend the extra time trying to redo what isn't necessary?)

The "tool" isn't necessary either, if you own a turntable and use the correct length knife when icing. It shouldn't take this long, there are faster ways.
HOW TO:
Make tip #127D (giant rose tip) Ruffle cake,
Write with icing,
Make buttercream roses on a stick:
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HOW TO:
Make tip #127D (giant rose tip) Ruffle cake,
Write with icing,
Make buttercream roses on a stick:
http://s984.photobucket.com/albums/ae322/Unlimited1cakes/
Reply
post #7 of 22
I was generalizing to the use of the "L-square" to help with finding an acceptable depth of icing for the sides of the cake and to help in getting it even on the vertical sides of the cake.

If the cake is centered its board (and the board is the appropriate amount larger than the cake--for me, that's about a 1/4th inch all the way around) and the board edge is smooth, it can be a very quick way to get a smooth coat of icing on the cake.

I don't go to the great lengths shown in the video--it's not THAT important to me. Many people find that various tips, tricks, and tools, can help them find a way that works for them.

Personally, I generally use a bench scraper in pretty much the same manner, but this tool comes in really handy for cakes that are taller than my scraper, so it's not a "fail" for me.

Rae
I love you, but your emergency is not my crisis!

They say that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.--Terry Pratchett (b.194
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I love you, but your emergency is not my crisis!

They say that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.--Terry Pratchett (b.194
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post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
I appreciate the youtube link.

I cut my boards 1/4 larger than the cake. I use my bench scraper as a guide. The sides of my cakes are always straight. But, I can't wrap my head around why the tops look like they do??


Thanks again!
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post #9 of 22
Maybe when you scrape the sides your bence scaper is not at a true right angle. Maybe it's wobbling a little.
Does this make sense?
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post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by poohsmomma

Maybe when you scrape the sides your bence scaper is not at a true right angle. Maybe it's wobbling a little.
Does this make sense?



Yea, that makes sense too. I am getting ready to do another one now.

Let's see how it comes out....
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post #11 of 22
I used to have a terrible time with the tops. Then I figured out what I needed to change by watching some youtube. I had been running my blade around the top as I turned the cake. Once I switched to bringing the blade from the outer edge of the cake, in towards the middle, it made all the difference for me. I go from the outside in, then turn the cake, go from the outside in, and repeat. No more overhangs for me and it stays round.

Editing to add.....I just reread your original post, not sure if that is how Sharon does it or not, maybe that is how you are doing it. I just do a number of scrapes in and turn and keep doing that several times till it is flat. Maybe more turns and less aggressive scrapes? Not taking so much off each time?
post #12 of 22
Thread Starter 
denetteb...

Thanks. That is what I am doing now.

I just did another one. This time I sat down in a chair while I scraped the sides with the bench scraper. I wanted to be sure the scraper was 100% straight. And it was.

While, the top was not as wavy as my picture, it still had a slight wave to it.

Geesh.

You would think after 5 years of caking, I can get this down!!!
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post #13 of 22
Mine don't end up perfectly smooth/flat just from the scraper either. Then I bring out the Viva/roller and get it better. That eliminates or minimizes any imperfections so that no one would see or notice them. Of course that doesn't work with a non-crusting recipe but I use a crusting recipe.
post #14 of 22
I have recently been using the "Upside Down Frosting Method" and have found I can do a bit better job that way with smooth tops, crisp edges and a better round shape top. I even used it on my latest heart shaped cake and it came out pretty good. I still need a little more practice, but I love this method...so far it seems to be what is working the best for me. But as mentioned, you have to try different ways and find out what tools and methods work for you.

Good luck!

In case you might be interested, this is the link....
http://jessicakesblog.blogspot.ca/2011/06/video-tutorial-upside-down-frosting.html
post #15 of 22
I recently found the guide that Rae posted and have found it makes all the difference, definitely worked for me.
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