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Preventing cakes from falling in the middle


Joni
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Nicholas, the reason for the sides being good is that they cook faster than the middle of the cake, so the middle is where the gas has a place to go and expand.

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I just bought some cake bands that you wet and place around your pans, they hook together with Velcro and are supposed to make cakes bake more evenly and flat. Haven't used them yet, but was told about them at a Taste of Home cooking demo by the chef.

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The center is fully bakes, albeit a bit more moist than the rest of the cake. I can't use a tube pan because I cut the cake into 3 layers to make a 7 layer cake. Dumb question, what is a heating core?

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Nicholas, the reason for the sides being good is that they cook faster than the middle of the cake, so the middle is where the gas has a place to go and expand.

Thanks! What got me this time is when I went to check the cake to see if it was done, I gently touched the middle of the cake and right then, it deflated noticeably...

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The center is fully bakes, albeit a bit more moist than the rest of the cake. I can't use a tube pan because I cut the cake into 3 layers to make a 7 layer cake. Dumb question, what is a heating core?

The reason that your cake bakes faster on the sides than in the centre is that the sides are in contact with more hot metal. A heating core, or cake nail, or flower nail, inserted into the centre of the cake, conducts heat upwards there at the same rate that it's conducted to the sides. This means that the entire cake bakes at the same rate - and voila! No more sunken centers.

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Heating core:

http://www.goldaskitchen.com/merchant.ihtml?pid=8098&step=4

To use it: "Grease and flour the heating core on the inside and the outside, place in the centre of the pan (with the opening facing up), fill with batter to the same level as the pan, and bake. After removing from the oven, remove the cake from inside the core, plug the hole in the cake, trim, and ice."

Flower nail:

http://www.goldaskitchen.com/merchant.ihtml?pid=1013&step=4

To use the flower nail, you place it in the middle of the pan with flat side down, and the point sticking out of the batter. I have used one of these, and can attest that it works.

Same for the cake strips/ cake bands teagal mentions. I routinely use those and get much less doming in my cakes, so there's less to trim off when layering.

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