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Baking - recipe followed to the letter, what am I doing wrong?

(95 Posts)
mummoi Mon 13-Apr-20 10:48:26

Hi everyone. I'm really at the end of my tether with this one so any advice would be really helpful. I baked a very simple victoria sponge yesterday with my kids. We followed the recipe completely. When the timer sounded I looked into the oven it had risen beautifully and was a lovely brown colour. Took it out, pierced it with a skewer and it came out clean. Left it to cool in the tin, looked 5 mins later and it was flat as a pancake. Cut into it later and it just looked solid & uncooked, and tasted horrible. Same happened last week with an easy bake chocolate cake recipe we tried - both from BBC recipes website. Help please, what am I doing so very wrong???

OP’s posts: |
MongerTruffle Mon 13-Apr-20 10:50:14

Are you 100% sure that you’re measuring the ingredients correctly?

HardAsSnails Mon 13-Apr-20 10:50:51

Any chance you're putting extra baking powder in with SR flour? Or over beating?

SunnySummerDays Mon 13-Apr-20 10:52:49

Hi what’s your recipe? Keep it simple...

SunnySummerDays Mon 13-Apr-20 10:54:10

Mine are always great. A really good beat of sugar and butter. Ad the eggs one by one. A really good whisk of each one to get air in. Then carefully turn the flour in with metal spoon. Don’t whisk!!!

faithinallisee Mon 13-Apr-20 10:54:56

Too much baking powder

Pinkyyy Mon 13-Apr-20 10:55:33

What butter are you using? And what consistency is it at when you use it?

Also if you think the top is brown enough but it's not cooked inside (doesn't spring back when pressed slightly) you can put tin foil over the top and it won't get any darker.

mummoi Mon 13-Apr-20 10:56:12

Definitely using the correct measurement of ingredients because my eldest is obsessed with weighing exact measures!

Mmm, maybe we are overbeating - we made both in the food processor rather than by hand. Could this be the problem then?

OP’s posts: |
MongerTruffle Mon 13-Apr-20 10:57:16

Once you add the flour, you should only be beating until just combined (unless the recipe says otherwise).

Soontobe60 Mon 13-Apr-20 10:57:38

I made one yesterday from Mary Berry, it's an all in one method. It was my first attempt and was delicious. I'd say it could be that your children were helping you!!, it takes careful measuring and a very light touch.

Boireannachlaidir Mon 13-Apr-20 10:59:12

Weigh your eggs, check oven temperature, use a cake tester not skewer, check your ingredients/is it the right flour and raising agent?

katmarie Mon 13-Apr-20 10:59:57

Was it flat all the way round or sunk in the middle?

SunnySummerDays Mon 13-Apr-20 11:00:18

I just pat the top when I think done and see it’s not soft and it should just be a light brown

flashbac Mon 13-Apr-20 11:01:45

Fan oven? If so try without fan.

BikeRunSki Mon 13-Apr-20 11:02:46

Are your scales calibrated correctly? (Weigh something of known weight to check).
Is your oven right? (Check with an oven or meat thermometer)
Have you got proper measuring spoons for baking powder? Are you sure you are not confusing tbs and tsp?
Are your eggs and butter at room temp when you start?
Are you opening the oven while the cake I’d cooking?
Are you adjusting temp for a fan oven, if you have a fan oven?

iusedtohavechickens Mon 13-Apr-20 11:03:39

Best recipe I've found 170g self raising flour, 170g butter/marg, 170g caster sugar and 6 eggs.

Beat butter until smooth, add sugar and beat until smooth, add eggs and then flour and bake for 25mins x

OhNoNoNoNotThatOne Mon 13-Apr-20 11:04:09

Another one thinking it's been over beaten, once you add the flour you should fold it in rather than whisk/beat to try and keep as much air in the mixture as possible and only mix until the flour is combined.

Keep going practice makes perfect! Baking is trial and error, that's the fun of it 😁

mummoi Mon 13-Apr-20 11:04:11

Classic Victoria sandwich recipe | BBC Good Food

This is the recipe. I used kerrygold butter too. I always worry about using baking powder, I removed it completely from our trusted banana bread recipe and never had an issue since.

Thanks everyone for replying, I'm guessing we need to mix by hand in future!

And thanks pinkyyy for the tip on tinfoil - I will definitely use that in future.

P.s. This is my first post on mumsnet so sorry that I haven't linked my reply, I haven't figured that bit out yet!

OP’s posts: |
PanamaPattie Mon 13-Apr-20 11:06:11

Weigh 4 eggs
Use this weight to measure butter, sugar and SR flour - no baking powder

Eg eggs weigh 224 grams
224 butter
224 sugar
224 SR flour

Always sift the sugar and flour into your bowl.

You don’t need a skewer. Just gently press the top of the cake and if it bounces back it’s done.

Don’t open the oven door for at least 20 mins or it will sink.

Pentium85 Mon 13-Apr-20 11:06:42

How odd! I've made 2 cakes this past week using that recipe and all have turned out fine

rhowton Mon 13-Apr-20 11:07:31

Whisk the eggs first. Then when you add them, a little bit at a time, add a teaspoon of the flour so eggs don't curdle. Once all the eggs are in, then flour but only mix with a metal spoon in a figure of 8, slowly, until all the mixture is together.

Tootletum Mon 13-Apr-20 11:09:35

Don't bother mixing by hand it's a pita. Either use the Mary Berry slightly-cheating all in one recipe or cream the butter and sugar in mixer and then only very slightly combine the rest of ingredients. Also check your oven is at the right temperature before you put the cake in.

KittenVsBox Mon 13-Apr-20 11:09:44

It's an all in one recipie, so the mixer should be fine.
How much baking powder are you adding? Try less.
I think I'd cook it a bit longer at a lower temperature (you are using 2 tins, aren't you?).

PanamaPattie Mon 13-Apr-20 11:09:55

I’ve just looked at the recipe. It just says 4 eggs. No mention of size I believe. 4 small eggs or 4 large eggs would give you different results.

BikeRunSki Mon 13-Apr-20 11:10:09

Use Stork instead of butter

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