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a few baking questions from a novice

(11 Posts)
GoldPlatedNineDoors Sun 16-Dec-12 19:14:41

1- why is my sponge cake crusty on the edges and how do I fix that?
2- can I use gel food colouring for sponge?
3- can I frost inbetween cake layers and not have jam?
4- how do I do lovely smooth frosting / butercream on the outer of my cake dont want to use standard icing

Thanks in advance

GoldPlatedNineDoors Sun 16-Dec-12 19:46:52


MyCatHasStaff Sun 16-Dec-12 19:53:00

1. Possibly your oven is a bit hot, but you could also put a bit of foil around the edge of your tin halfway through cooking
2. You can use gel colouring - but do you really mean gel, or the liquid from supermarkets? You can use the liquid, but you need quite alot and sometimes you can taste it. Paste is good, AmeriGel is the best.
3. Yes, you can put whatever you like between layers
4. Make your own buttercream, and use either a stepped palette knife, or pipe on. Let me know if you want some recipes smile

balancingfigure Sun 16-Dec-12 19:58:20

1. Perhaps a bit overcooked or oven too hot? Also did you use loads of butter to grease? Maybe you've slightly 'fried' the edges. However will probably taste fine.
2. Yes I think so, not that I've tried! Will just be tricky judging final colour as it will be different when cooked.
3. Yes! Jam is just traditional for Victoria sponge but no requirement at all.
4. Beat it really really well ideally with electric whisk or something. Then do 2 coats. First is crumb coat to cover all cake and get smoothish and then leave somewhere cool to harden a bit. Then do second coat and you can smooth/work the icing more as you have a hard base.
Hope this helps!

YDdraigGoch Sun 16-Dec-12 20:02:03

The crispy edges thing is likely to be too much sugar. Try putting a little less in.

shriekingnora Sun 16-Dec-12 20:15:50

Smooth icing - put a spreading knife in boiling water to heat up and then smooth over the icing while the knife is hot and wet. Don't get too much water on it though. A higher proportion of butter is easier to work with.

GoldPlatedNineDoors Sun 16-Dec-12 20:42:10

Thank you all! Definetly gel food colouring - I have sugarflair paste stuff.

Will try a little less sugar and a few degrees less on the oven next time.

Crumb layer sounds ideal. Am doing a rainbow layer cake. A recipe for buttercream would be brilliant - can I do it between all layers and over the top too?

nannycook Sun 16-Dec-12 21:19:59

Gold, paste colours are good but def use abit as colour will be weak, usually 4ozs butter to 8ozs icing sugar, but i use as much as it takes to get the right consistency.

GoldPlatedNineDoors Sun 16-Dec-12 21:43:49

I did a layer cake with paste and it worked well, but tried cupcakes tonight and used less paste thinking id need less and the colour is naff!! Think ill stick to a layer cake and jst do non-coloured cupcakes.

nannycook Sun 16-Dec-12 21:55:56

I did a 3 coloured layer cake for a colleague last week i blue, purple and pink, i haven't put it on my profile page yet, but i 24 cupcakes to do for xmas eve all in xmas drcorations.

MyCatHasStaff Sun 16-Dec-12 22:56:02

This one sort of dries out on the surface, so it's not a hard finish like icing, but gives a 'crust' iyswim

•250g butter, softened
•1 teaspoon vanilla extract
•600g icing sugar
•2 tablespoons milk
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and vanilla. Blend in the sugar, a quarter at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the milk, and continue mixing until light and fluffy. Keep icing covered until ready to decorate.

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