Monday, 17 June 2013

How To Make A Cake From Scratch

If you are looking for a guide on how to make a cake from scratch, you came to the right place. Many women are overwhelmed with the idea of baking, but this can be achieved even by a beginner. The first thing you need to do is to decide what kind, shape and how many layers of cake to bake.

1. Choosing a cake design.

There are plenty of cookbooks, magazines and websites to check out for your desired cake design. If it is your first time to make a cake, it is sensible to create a simple cake first and then finish it with butter cream or chocolate ganache. However, as you go along, it is always best to challenge yourself to go out of your comfort zone and try something more difficult than you are used to.

2. Prepare ingredients.

Assuming you have bought all the necessary ingredients for your chosen cake design and flavor, set up your work space and put everything in place. Everyone likes chocolate cakes and they are not too difficult to make. Check out this dark chocolate cake recipe from scratch.

Carefully measure and prepare each ingredient before you start mixing and baking and look for substitutes if some you can't find some of your ingredients. After doing so, you are ready to bake.

3. Make the cake batter.

Most cake decorators recommend to combine the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients in the separate bowls and mix them together in one bowl, thereafter. Some recipes would call for you to mix thoroughly, whereas some would tell you to mix just until combined.
The reason for this is that you do not want to introduce a lot of air and stir the flour too much to encourage gluten-formation. This can cause a cake to have a rubbery consistency. You want your cake to be as soft as possible.

 4. Bake the cake as required.

After mixing the ingredients, according to the recipe, pour on prepared cake pans of your preferred shape and bake at 360 degrees Fahrenheit. Most bakers would advise you to bake at this temperature.
Also, some cakes are baked through au bain marie, which means you would have to bake them in a water bath with water up to the sides of the cake pans. Baking this way would require you to lower the temperature a bit and cover the cake pan with foil to prevent moist from drowning the batter.
The cake is done when a toothpick inserted comes out clean or with very few crumbs clinging (if you want moist, fudge-y cake). Set the cake aside until cool. You may refrigerate it at this moment. You can already create a filling for the cake at this point, if the recipe calls for it.

5. Level the cake and assemble.

If you are baking a two-layered cake, taper the top of each cake to create flatter surfaces on top. Assemble the cake on a turntable (if you have one) and a cake board according to your preferred cake design.

Usually, various kinds of cake fillings are used to moisten the middle such as frosting, fruits, chocolate and other interesting sauces or custards. Top the remaining cake layer after filling in the middle.

6. Frost the cake.

You can choose a frosting from many different types of cake icing to decorate your cake. You can use a piping bag or a pastry gun with an appropriate tip to do this. Chill and serve or put it in a nice cake box to give away as a gift.

Some images are courtesy of digitalart

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