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Cakes

 

 

When baking cakes six main ingredients are used.

 

 These are:

 

                        Flour

                        Fat

                        Liquid and Eggs

                        Aerator

                        Sugar

                        Fruit

                       

 

These ingredients must be weighed and measured accurately to ensure:

 

                              ·      the recipe remains balanced

                              ·      a uniform product is obtained

                              ·      the correct yield is obtained

                              ·      faults are prevented.

 

 

 Flours

 

Wheat is milled to produce flour.  The main factor to be considered when choosing a flour for baked goods is the protein content. This protein is called gluten and is responsible for giving elasticity to the dough.

 

 

Soft flour

  • Has a protein content of less than 10%.

  • Produces a fine crumb (structure).

  • Used for cakes.

Self-raising flour

  • Is a plain soft flour

  • Has a raising agent added, such as baking powder

Wholemeal Flour

  • The bran has not been removed during milling.

  • Can be plain or self-raising.

  • Gives a darker colour.

  • Gives a coarser texture due to bran and germ.

 

Flour is a major structural agent and has an important effect upon the characteristics of a baked product.

 

Properties of Flour

 

Volume

At correct temperature gluten sets, giving the structure to the risen product

Colour

Depending on the type of flour e.g. wholemeal will give a brown result.

Eating Qualities Helps to hold sufficient moisture to the crumb to make the cake enjoyable to the palate
Texture Depending on the type of flour e.g. white will give a smoother result
Flavour

Depending on the type of flour e.g. wholemeal can give a nutty flavour.

Nutritional Value Brown and wholemeal flours contain more fibre (NSP) than white flour

 

 

 

 

 

Fats

 

Fats and oils are highly refined extracted foods.

They may be of either plant or animal origin.

 

Types of Fats

 

Butter -  Made by churning cream. Can be salted or unsalted. Is expensive. Gives a delicious flavour to cakes.

 

Margarine  - Cheaper than butter. Made from oils. Coconut, cotton-seed, ground-nut, palm, palm-kernel, soya-bean and sunflower oils may be used. By law margarine must contain Vitamins A and D.

 

Cooking fats - Made from the same partially hardened oils as margarine.

 

 

Properties of Fats

 

Aeration - Creaming incorporates air into fat. A fat that has been creamed contains tiny bubbles of air, caster sugar helps this process. Soft tub margarines speed up the creaming process. The presence of a little water speeds up the creaming process and gives a lighter result, but may also sometimes alter the consistency!

 

Emulsifying - The ability to assist in the formation of a smooth clear batter.

 

Flavour - Depends on the type of fat used.

 

Eating quality - Provides added flavour depending on the type of fat used. Fats have a general effect on the eating quality (e.g. soft crumb)

 

Nutritional value - Provides the body with warmth and energy. Provides the body with vitamin A and vitamin C. Keeping qualities The emulsifying and enriching properties of fats help to extend the shelf life of a product.

 

Eggs

 

Eggs are added to most cake mixtures.

 

Types of Eggs

 

The most commonly used are:

 

                                                     • shell egg

                                                     • chilled egg

                                                     • frozen egg

                                                     • frozen egg white

                                                     • dried egg white.

 

 

Properties of Eggs

 

Moisturising - Egg contains 74 per cent water. Egg has the ability to moisturise its own weight in flour.

 

Aeration - Whisked egg can incorporate air and increase in volume. It has the ability to aerate its own weight in flour.

 

Structural - Egg is distributed through the fabric of the mixture. When subject to heat it expands. The proteins coagulate and the structure is established.

 

Emulsifying - Egg yolk contains a natural emulsifying agent known as lecithin. This lecithin assists in the formation of a smooth, clear mixture.

 

Flavouring - Own characteristic flavour.

 

Colouring - Yellow colour. Egg whites alone give a white colour.

 

Eating qualities - Confers lightness, moisture and flavour to the keeping qualities.

 

Keeping qualities - Moisturising, emulsifying, enriching and general softening properties will extend the shelf the shelf life of the product.

 

Nutritional value - High levels of calories. Good source of protein and energy.

 

 

Aerators

 

In order to make cakes rise and have a light texture, gas must be introduced. As the mixture heats, the gases expand, the mixture rises and the proteins coagulate, causing the mixture to set (if it is the correct consistency).

 

Raising agents may be mechanical or chemical.

 

Mechanical aeration relies on trapping air between the fine particles of the mixtures.

 

This is introduced by:

 

Creaming - Beating margarine or butter and caster sugar together until light and fluffy.

 

Whisking - Beating eggs and sugar together until the volume has increased.

 

Sieving - is used to aerate the flour and dry ingredients.

 

Beating - Beating egg into fat and flour sugar mixtures results in air being incorporated. Both yolk (to a slight degree) and the white (to a greater degree) can hold air bubbles in a foam.

 

Chemical aeration

 

Carbon dioxide is produced in mixtures by using:

 

Bicarbonate of Soda - Only used in strongly flavoured cakes e.g. gingerbreads.

Bicarbonate of Soda with Cream of Tartar -  produces baking powder

Self-raising flour - Useful for plain cakes. Contains too much raising agent for rich cakes.

 

 

 

 

Sugars and Syrups

 

Types

 

Caster sugar has small crystals which dissolve more easily and thus gives a smooth texture.

 

Granulated sugar has coarse crystals and is more suitable for cakes using the melting method. Has fine to coarse crystals.

 

Brown sugar adds colour and flavour to dark cakes.

 

Icing sugar is a fine powder. Mainly used for icings and decoration.

 

Glucose can be a powder, syrup or chips. Is used in jams, confectionary and icings.

 

Golden Syrup and Treacle can be used with sugar and gives a more moist cake with a closer texture.

 

 

Properties of Sugars and Syrups

 

Flavour - To sweeten the cakes.

 

Shortening - To dissolve into a syrup and soften the gluten in the flour during baking.

 

Lighten - To help trap air with fat during creaming so that cake rises. (Excess sugar causes the gluten to become too soft and this will cause collapse during baking.)

 

Colour - Caramelises in the heat of the oven to produce a brown crust.

 

Shelf life - Retains moisture and stops baked goods becoming dry.

 

 

 

Sugars and Syrups - Preparation for Use

 

Depends on the mixing methods –

 

Can be sieved with the dry ingredients.

 

Can be dissolved in liquid prior to addition.

 

 

 

Fruit

 

Fresh fruits add flavour, sweetness and moisture to a baked product.

 

Dried fruits, which are more commonly added to baked goods, add flavour, sweetness but less moisture.

 

Fruits must be dry to prevent them sinking to the bottom of the cake.

For example, the heavy syrup coating on some fruits such as cherries must be washed off and the fruit carefully dried.

 

Types of Fruit

 

Currants - Small black Corinth grape

Raisins - Grapes are stoned then dried. Some come from seedless grapes. Dessert raisins have stones left in them.

Sultanas - Dried white grapes. (Sulphur dioxide is used to retain colour).

Dates - Often packed in slabs. Used in cakes. Dessert varieties are lighter and softer.

Apricots - Used in cakes.

Nuts - Often added with fruit to cakes. Add flavour and give an open and crunchy texture.

 

 

Fruits - Preparation for use

 

Fresh fruit - Wash Peel Dry Remove stalks, stones and cores. Slice Chop Pulp

 

Dried - Wash Dry Remove any stalks, stones and cores. Soak, if necessary

 

Sugar preserved - Wash Dry Cut Chop

 

 

 

Proportion of Ingredients

 

Method of caking making.

Type of cake.

Flour

  (g)

Fat

(g)

Sugar

  (g)

Eggs

(no.)

Liquid

(ml)

Creaming -

    Plain

 

    Medium

 

    Rich

 

 

Victoria sandwich

 

Sultana cake

 

Rich fruit cake

 

100

 

250

 

250

 

100

 

200

 

200

 

100

 

150

 

200

 

2

 

3-4

 

4

 

/

 

25

 

/

All in one

Madeira cake

225

175

175

3

50

Whisking

Swiss roll

50

   /

50

2

/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preparation of Ingredients

 

 

Ingredient

Preparation

Flour

Sieve before use.

Stirred or folded into mixture

Fat

Can be creamed to incorporate air.

Can be folded and rolled to trap air.

Can be melted and added to mixtures

Liquid & Eggs

Liquids are stirred or folded into mixtures

Eggs should be used at room temperature.

Eggs can be whisked to incorporate air.

Egg yolk is a natural emulsifier which helps to form a smooth, clear mixture

Chemical aerator

Sieved with the dry ingredients

Sugar

Can be stirred into mixtures.

Can be creamed with fat to incorporate air.

Can be whisked with egg to incorporate air.

Can be melted and stirred into mixture

Fruit

Dried – wash, dry, remove stalks, stones and cores, soak if necessary.

Sugar preserved – wash, dry, cut, chop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Control of Baking Process

 

 

Cake

Victoria Sandwich

Cake

 

Swiss Roll

Madeira Cake

Sultana Cake

Rich Fruit Cake

 

Temp.

170 °C

No. 4

220 °C

No. 7

160 °C

No. 3

170 °C

No.3

170 °C

No.3

Position in oven   

Middle shelf

Top shelf

Lower

shelf

Lower

shelf

Lower shelf

 

Baking time

 

20 – 30 mins.

8 –10 mins.

90 - 105 mins.

60 – 90 mins.

120 – 180 mins.

Test for readiness

 

 

 

Golden brown.

 

Spongy to touch.

 

Cake coming away from edges of tin.

 

Golden brown.

 

Spongy to touch.

 

Cake coming away from edges of tin.

Golden brown.

 

Spongy to touch.

 

Warm skewer should come out of cake clean.

Golden Brown.

 

Firm to touch.

 

Warm skewer should come out of cake clean.

Golden Brown.

 

Firm to touch.

 

Warm skewer should come out of cake clean.

 

 

 

Function of Ingredients

 

Ingredient

Function

 Flour

Structure             -   gluten sets giving risen product

 Eggs

Raising agent    -   incorporates air

 

Liquid                   -   hydrates protein in flour.

                              -   causes gelatinisation of starch.

                              -   produces steam as a raising agent.

 

Structure            -   coagulated egg protein gives structure to the product.

 

Colour                 -   egg yolk gives golden colour to product.

 

Fats

 

During cooking fat melts.

 

Fat is absorbed into flour. This helps to produce characteristic crumbly texture of cakes.

 

The melting fat results in the formation of air spaces.

 

These air spaces contribute to the lightness of the product

 

Caster Sugar

Tenderising             -   softens gluten in flour.

 

Flavour                     -   gives a sweet taste.

 

Keeping qualities  -   helps retain moisture in baked goods.          

 

Raising Agent

Liquid and heat cause gases to expand.

 

Gases are trapped in product.

 

Gases cause the product to rise.

 

Protein films around gas bubbles coagulate.

 

Starch grains gelatinise and the batter sets.

 

 

 

 

 

Protection During Baking

Large cakes e.g. rich fruit cake, take a long time to bake and therefore require protection from the heat.

 

The protection will ensure the interior is fully baked while an even crust is obtained.

 

The protection takes the form of lining the cake tin inside and out:

 

a)         inside – greaseproof or baking parchment paper may be used;

 

b)         outside -  card or thick paper should be secured around the outside of the tin.

 

 

 

Storage of Cakes

It is important that all cakes are stored correctly so that they can be enjoyed when they are still moist and fresh. As a general rule, everyday cakes should be stored in a cool, dry place for up to one week. Avoid warm, moist conditions, as this will encourage mould growth.

Storage of Madeira Cake – Wrap the cake in greaseproof paper, then foil and store in a cool place until required. A Madeira cake must be used and eaten within five days. This cake will freeze successfully for up to three months.

Storage of Fruit Cakes – This type of cake can be stored for considerably longer. Basically, the higher the fruit content then the longer the cake will store.

A Light Fruit Cake will store for up to four weeks. It must be totally cold before it is wrapped in greaseproof paper, then in foil or placed in a cake box, and stored in a cool place. A light fruit cake will freeze successfully for up to three months.

A Rich Fruit Cake will keep for up to three months and, in fact, the flavour will improve as the taste of each ingredient becomes less distinct and their flavours blend together.

Once baked this cake should be removed from the tin, but the lining paper should be left on the cake. This helps to keep the cake moist and also helps to protect the cake against getting knocked and having its shape spoiled.

Spoon over some alcohol when you remove the cake from the tin, as this will add to the flavour and keeping qualities of the cake. Make some holes with a skewer and pour on a 15 ml spoon of alcohol. Brandy or rum is best as it sweetens and flavours. Care must be taken not to add too much alcohol as this will make the cake wet and difficult to handle.

Wrap the cake in one or two layers of greaseproof paper then wrap it in a tea towel, or in brown paper, or at this stage you can use aluminium foil. *Place the wrapped cake in a box or cupboard until required.

Do not store it in a plastic container as this encourages mould growth.

Avoid using cling film as this makes the cake sweat.

Aluminium foil must not come into contact with the cake as the natural acids in the fruit will eat through the foil.

Once a fruit cake has been covered with marzipan and iced it will keep longer.

Iced fruit cakes need to be stored in cardboard boxes in a warm, dry atmosphere to keep them dust free and in good condition. Damp and cold cause the icing to stain and colourings to run.

Do not freeze rich fruit cakes as the freezing stops the maturing of the flavours in the cake.

Swiss roll sponges need to be eaten on the day they are baked otherwise they become dry in texture.

 

 

Cake Decoration

 

Coating

Ingredients

Techniques

Equipment

Chocolate

Chocolate

Melting

 

Pouring

 

Coating

 

Pan

 

Bowl

 

Drip tray/plate

 

Cake board

 

Turntable

 

Butter cream

Butter

 

Icing sugar

 

Water/fruit juice

 

Flavourings

Sieving

 

Creaming

 

Spreading

 

Smoothing 

 

Bowl

 

Sieve

 

Tablespoon

 

Wooden spoon/Beater

 

Palette knife

 

Cake board

 

Turntable

 

Marzipan

Marzipan

Kneading

Rolling

Shaping

Trimming

Coating

Smoothing

Rolling pin

Sharp knife

String

Cake board

Turntable

Apricot glaze

Apricot jam

Water

Melting

 

Pan/Microwave

Bowl

Pastry brush

Wooden spoon or plastic spatula

 

Royal icing

Merriwhite/

eggwhite

Water

Icing sugar

Colourings

Glycerine

Lemon juice

 

Sieving

Mixing

Spreading

Paddling

Smoothing

Levelling

Colouring

Scraping

 

Damp cloth/cling   

film

Bowl

Sieve

Tablespoon

Wooden spoon

Plastic scraper

Palette knife

Icing scraper

Icing ruler

Cake board

Turntable

 

Sugarpaste

Sugarpaste

Icing sugar

Colourings

 

Kneading

Rolling

Coating

Smoothing

Colouring

 

Rolling pin

Sharp knife

String

Cake board

Turntable

 

 

 

Technique

Medium

Equipment

Modelling

Marzipan

Sugarpaste

 

Boning tool

Veining tool

Wheel cutter

Sharp knife

Embossing

Marzipan

Sugarpaste

 

Cutter/stencil/anything small with a defined pattern on it.

Crimping

Marzipan

Sugarpaste

 

Crimping tool

Cut–outs

Chocolate

Sugarpaste

Mexican paste

Flower paste

 

Greaseproof paper/waxed paper

Cutters/sharp knife/stencils

Palette knife

Rolling pin

Brush

Garrett frills

Sugar paste

Mexican paste

Flower paste

 

Rolling pin

Cutters

Cocktail stick

Palette knife

Brush

Greaseproof paper

Scriber

Brush embroidery

Royal icing

Piping bags

Tube No.1

Paint brush

Cutter/stencil/design

Run outs

Royal icing

 

Piping bags

Tube No.1 or 2 – plain nozzle

Waxed paper/acetate film

Piping

Royal icing

 

Piping bags

Tubes – plain No. 1 or 2 shell  or star nozzle (as required)