Almost all of us love to bake cakes at home but it is not necessary that the taste of your cake would exactly be same like that of your friend’s cake or some bakery’s cake. Most of my students ask me that they want to make the cake like that of xyz bakery. I always try to explain them that it is not necessary that we exactly get the same result. There are so many factors like type of oven, quality of ingredients, recipe etc due to which you wont get exact same taste. However we can bake perfect cakes (by the way everyone’s PERFECT definition is always different) if you try to follow the following tips.
Preheat the oven
This is the most important step. Most of the people do not know what does preheating oven means and what will happen to your cake if the oven is not properly preheated.
Preheating an oven means that you have to heat your oven before you start baking your cake. Preheating varies from oven to oven. Weather conditions also play an important role in it.
Bigger the oven more time it takes to preheat. Similarly if the weather is too cold and you live in a country like Pakistan where there is no central heating system in your house, your oven preheating will take more time.
So the question arises that how should we check if the oven is properly heated before we place our cake in it?
The best way is to, heat your oven for 30 minutes at least.Then touch the glass of the oven window. If the glass is hot enough that you are unable to touch the it, it means that now your oven is ready for cake baking.
The ideal temperature for cake baking, with a standard size oven is 180 degree centigrade (350 F). If your oven is too big and/or you are going to bake many cakes at the same time, then 200 degrees maximum would be fine.
Right recipe is the most important part. If you are using any random recipe or you are following any YouTube recipe, remember, not everyone shares their perfect recipe. There are very few chefs be it on tv, internet blogs or YouTube, who share perfect recipes with you. But on the other hand, there are many other factors which can damage our cake, because sometimes its our mistake and not a wrong recipe. There is also something I would like to share with you about TV and/or YouTube recipes, there is thing called EDITION, sometimes the videos are well edited, due to which you see a perfect final product. So one cannot say if the recipe has a flaw or not, unless you are an expert.
Good Quality Ingredients:
Quality of an ingredients plays an important role in cake making (or any other recipe). Poor quality ingredients will result in a bad quality product. Do not use stale things. Be very very very careful while choosing flour. Yes, and this point is especially for those who live in Pakistan. You will find here many different qualities of white flour and every time you will find a little bit difference in the texture of your cake. Try to get flour from a good superstore, instead of buying from some wholesale market.
If you are making a chocolate cake, the quality of cocoa powder is also very important. For that purpose I would say go for a Dutch processed one or any other good quality one (and remember, when it comes to cocoa powder expensive one would be a better one, mostly, but not always).
Avoid Over Mixing:
Do not over mix the ingredients. Specially when you add dry mixture in wet mixture. Fold gently and quickly. Instead of using cake/mixture or beater use spatula. Do not fold for a longer period of time, as it will form gluten in your batter and gluten is not good for cake texture.
Placing a Cake in Oven:
Place your cake in the middle of the oven instead of placing it on side.
Rotating a Cake (If you are using gas oven):
Rotate your cake (change the side) after every 5 to 7 minutes.
Do not use too big or too small cake molds, keeping in mind the quantity of your cake batter. If you use a mold which is too big for the quantity of your batter, your cake will be baked too quickly, mostly over baked, dried and /or hard.
If you use a small cake mold and your batter quantity is more, it will result in over flowing of the batter while baking, it wont allow the cake to rise, hence will result in a hard thin cake specially it will look as if someone has punched the cake in the center.
Always start with the easiest recipe
If you are baking for the first time or if you have failed 1000’s of recipes (which means that you are facing some problem while baking a cake), start with the most easiest recipe. Don’t try to reach the level of an expert and follow some complicated recipe which will fail you and you will be disappointed. If you become expert in easiest recipes, gradually you will be able to handle the toughest recipes.
If you want to ask any question regarding CAKE BAKING you can ask under this post. And don’t forget to share the post with your friends and family on social media.