Baking Cakes

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated October 14, 2015)

Before you actually bake your cake, read up on tips for preparing to bake a cake. Once you've got your batter in the pan, you can use some simple tricks to ensure your cake turns out great.

First, watch your cake as it bakes. Don't open the oven door frequently (this will make your cake fall), just turn on the light or peak inside occasionally. The center will rise higher than the edges, and the edges will start to pull away from the sides of the pan. Your cake's top will start to crack a little, too, as it gets close to finished.

Test your cake with a piece of uncooked spaghetti or a toothpick. Gently poke the center of the cake (usually the tallest point). If your poker comes out with batter on it, the cake needs to bake a little longer. If it comes out clean, your cake is done.

You can also press the center of your cake lightly with your finger. The cake is cooked through if the top springs back leaving no imprint. If your finger leaves an indent, put the cake back in the oven for a few minutes.

Cakes risen with beaten egg whites—angel food, chiffon, etc.—often fall while cooling. To minimize the chances of your cake falling, invert the pan as soon as it comes out of the oven and let the cake cool upside down on a wire cooling rack. It won't fall out of the pan. You'll have to loosen it with a spatula or palette knife when you want to get it out.

Now that your cake is all done, are you having trouble getting it out of the pan? Don't panic. The sugar and oil have probably hardened against the sides of the pan. You need to heat the bottom of the pan by filling a large bowl with hot water and dipping the bottom of the pan in it. Or, if you have an electric stove, heat a burner then turn it off. Wait until it's warm but not hot, and place the cake pan on it for a few minutes. Either way, your cake should slip out of the cake pan easily.

When turning out a cake that will be served as a single layer, place a sheet of wax or parchment paper on top of the cake, and invert it on a wire rack. Immediately turn the cake back to another rack and remove the paper. This prevents the top of the cake from being marked by the rack as it cools.

When you are going to layer a cake and you want its top to be flat, turn your cake out on a cooling rack and let it rest on its top. This will flatten it a bit, and you'll have less to level off.

Because microwaved cakes often come out sticky, uneven, and unbrowned on top, only microwave cakes that will be frosted or covered with crumb toppings.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...

MORE FROM DORIS

Using Boxes to Organize Your Clutter

Boxes are what we often use to organize our cluttered lives. The only problem with this is that in an attempt to organize our ...

Discover More

Grilling Meat Outdoors

Do you love a freshly grilled steak or hamburger? Check out some advice on grilling meat before you light the barbecue this ...

Discover More

Treating Rough, Dry Skin

Is your skin dry and itchy? Sometimes it just takes a few changes in your routine to have soft and smooth skin again.

Discover More
More Cooking Tips

Scrumptiously Delicious Lazy Daisy Cake

If you are going on a picnic, this is the cake for you to make. This cake is delicious and will be one that you definitely ...

Discover More

Butter and Pound Cakes Explained

Confused about butter cakes and pound cakes? Could there really be a difference? Read on to learn more.

Discover More

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Pumpkin cheesecake can be an interesting alternative to a traditional pumpkin pie. It is easy to make and is a crowd ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured cooking tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is eight less than 9?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Videos

Subscribe to the Tips.Net channel:

Visit the Tips.Net channel on YouTube

Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured cooking tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)