Some Special Tips

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  • Butter cakes in layer cake pans bake most evenly when encircled with cake strips. The strips serve to slow down the baking at the perimeter of the pan so that the batter rises at the same rate as in the center, preventing a peaked surface. When preparing it for filling and baking, turn the pan upside down and gently stretch the silicone strip to fit around the sides.
  • The bottom of layer cake pans should be lined with parchment to ensure the complete release of the cake, especially for chocolate cakes. (It is not necessary for non-chocolate cakes if using nonstick pans.) Coat the bottom of the pan with solid shortening to affix the parchment round. Coat the entire inside of the pan with baking spray with flour or with solid shortening and flour, tapping out any excess.
  • I prefer the brand Baker’s Joy for baking spray with flour because it is odorless, tasteless, and prevents sticking most effectively.
  • When filling a fluted tube pan, spoon about one-third of the batter into the pan and press it back and forth with the back of a spoon. This will ensure that the batter goes into all of the crevices. Then pour in the rest of the batter.
  • All mixtures that are beaten will vary in volume depending on how much air is beaten into them. Professional bakers assess this by color and by how much 1 cup of the mixture weighs. With cake batter made in the smaller quantities required by home bakers, the difference is not significant, but with buttercream, the volume will vary depending on the temperature and how long it is beaten. For this reason, the volume given for buttercream recipes is approximate.
  • When frosting cake layers, it is best to place each layer bottom side up to avoid crumbs in the frosting. It is easiest to start with a very small amount of frosting to create a crumb coating before applying the rest.