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Heavy and Dense Cakes

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi All, I recently decided to take up cake baking and decorating as a hobby. I am having an issue with all of my cakes ending up heavy and dense - cake mixes and scratch recipes. I do not know what I am doing wrong. I am using a Magic Line 10x2 pan and a Kitchenaid Pro 500 mixer. There are a couple of things that I am wondering are my issues: - Mixing too long (usually 2-3 minutes on low) - Ingredients not at room temp - too much batter in pan Can any of these be causing problems for me? The last recipe I tried was the Easy Scratch Mix with Duke Mayo (see recipe below) and it was super dry. Any ideas of what I might have done wrong? The recipe says to bake on 350 but i baked on 325 - with the exception of that, the recipe was followed exactly as written. Duke's Easy Scratch Cake Ingredients 2 1/3 cups flour 1 Tbsp. baking powder 3/4 tsp. salt 1 1/2 cups sugar 1/2 cup Duke's Mayonnaise 2 eggs 1 tsp. Sauer's Pure Vanilla Extract* 1 1/3 cups milk * Substitute with other extracts or flavors as desired Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 2 round cake pans; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, beat sugar, Duke's Mayonnaise and vanilla extract until combined. Add eggs, beating on low until blended. While beating on low, add half the flour mixture, then half the milk, repeating until completely combined. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then remove and continue to cool completely before frosting as desired. Serving Size: 10 Preparation Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 25-30 minutes . .
post #2 of 12

Over-mixing could definitely be your culprit. I stop mixing as soon as all of the ingredients are combined. Sifting your flour, baking powder, and salt can also help. It makes the cake a bit lighter. 

post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks! Would you recommend sifting for every recipe and also should i measure the sifted ingredients to add to cake after sifting or measure first then sift and add?
post #4 of 12

Baking from scratch is not something you can become good at quickly. You need to study and find reliable sources for your recipes.

 

"2 1/3 cups flour 1 Tbsp. baking powder 3/4 tsp. salt 1 1/2 cups sugar 1/2 cup Duke's Mayonnaise 2 eggs 1 tsp. Sauer's Pure Vanilla Extract* 1 1/3 cups milk * Substitute with other extracts or flavors as desired Preheat oven to 350°F"

 

1 tbsp of baking powder is WAY too much for that recipe....it shouldn't be more than 1 tsp. powder.

 

Also, stopping mixing the minute your ingredients are combined is not correct. That is only true for quick breads and short doughs. If you under mix your cake batters it can totally ruin your texture.

 

You also need to learn the difference between using all purpose flour verse cake flour. This website is not the best place to learn how to bake! CC is the place to learn about decorating and the cake business.

post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stitches View Post

Baking from scratch is not something you can become good at quickly. You need to study and find reliable sources for your recipes.

 

"2 1/3 cups flour 1 Tbsp. baking powder 3/4 tsp. salt 1 1/2 cups sugar 1/2 cup Duke's Mayonnaise 2 eggs 1 tsp. Sauer's Pure Vanilla Extract* 1 1/3 cups milk * Substitute with other extracts or flavors as desired Preheat oven to 350°F"

 

1 tbsp of baking powder is WAY too much for that recipe....it shouldn't be more than 1 tsp. powder.

 

Also, stopping mixing the minute your ingredients are combined is not correct. That is only true for quick breads and short doughs. If you under mix your cake batters it can totally ruin your texture.

 

You also need to learn the difference between using all purpose flour verse cake flour. This website is not the best place to learn how to bake! CC is the place to learn about decorating and the cake business.

I respectfully disagree about not learning to bake here. There are people that have been baking for years. I think they may know a thing or two. I don't stop the second it is all combined. I stop the mixer. Scrap the sides and bottom, then do one final mix. Over mixing it can tighten up the batter and make for a more dense cake. I have done this for quite some time and always get great results. 

 

I do, however, agree that baking from scratch doesn't happen overnight. I spent months testing and trying out different recipes before finding what worked for me. 

 

ladonna...there are a few ways to do it. The way I do it, is to measure it out and then sift it into the butter. Alternating milk and flour mixture until I get it the way I like it. I can always look at it and tell when it has come together like it should. Just stick with it and try try try.

post #6 of 12
Even better than measuring In my opinion is weighing. I believe that it can make it a little bit easier to get a good scratch cake. It's more accurate
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by morganchampagne View Post

Even better than measuring In my opinion is weighing. I believe that it can make it a little bit easier to get a good scratch cake. It's more accurate

Weighing is measuring but I agree with what you are trying to say. Doing it by the weight is better than by cups. Although I do measure mine by cups.

post #8 of 12
^^LOL. Yessssss I'm sorry. That's what I meant. Doing too much at once
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the responses. I will definitely keep trying. Thanks also for clarifying the statement about this site not being a place to learn to bake. I have read many threads with someone asking questions related to failed recipes and suggestions. There are always people who are willing to try to provide answers or suggestions. I appreciate any help I can get and who better to ask than those who may have tried it and were able to perfect the results.
post #10 of 12

Hi , I baked cakes for 37 years ..  I used cake mixes and I did something that perhaps could make your cakes denser. I used Margarine to coat my pans . This makes your cakes taste like a home made cake and even a chef in my area couldn't tell the difference in whether it was home made or a cake mix. So your answer could be in what you coat your pans with.. My customers loved the texture of my cakes.. 

post #11 of 12
I use to have the same problem. I found that using my whip attachment helped airate the battery.
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Ahhh. Great suggestion. I can't wait to try that. Thanks
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