It’s time to talk about cake. Why? Because I’m the birthday girl and I said so. Actually, it’s because I’ve been milking this birthday cow for far too long and I’m getting ready to wrap it up.
So… I’m going to do two posts about cake today, and pretty soon I’ll be moving on to things that make me legitimately happy. Like Shark Week. And the countdown to college football kick off.
But back to cake for now.
Since I share a birthday with my good friend, I always do a separate birthday cake for her. She loves my glazed lime cake and asks for it every year. So I make it every year.
And the cake makes me mad.
Here’s the dilemma: The cake will sink in the middle if you don’t cook it long enough.
Please stop focusing on my armpit fat and concentrate on the cratered cake instead.
The problem with cooking it long enough to prevent it from sinking in the middle is that you end up drying out the cake a bit — particularly around the edges.
What to do?
See how fluffy and perfect-looking this is? I think the cake is dry, but I’m also a bit of a bitch about baked goods….
The problem with the cake could actually be that I have cheap baking pans, and I need something that conducts heat more evenly to get this cake to really turn out properly. I wrap my pans in aluminum foil every time I use them to prevent the edges of my cakes from burning or drying out, but I have more issues with this cake recipe than any other when it comes to uneven baking. I’m not even lying. I’ve made this cake at least 11 times and I swear I alternate between letting it dry out and letting it sink in the middle. Both options just send me right to the moon with rage. I could try the glass pan baking method (that the recipe actually calls for), but I don’t have a glass pan that is the right size. So maybe I’m just being one of those jerks who doesn’t follow the recipe and then says the recipe sucks. You know those people. They say, “I substituted margarine for butter, stevia for sugar, and grape Kool-Aid for grapes,” and then they can’t figure out why the cake now tastes like crap. (I kinda want to punch these people. Why write a review?!? It’s worthless to everyone who reads it.)
One potential fix for the dryness might be to double the amount of lime syrup you pour over the cake. Maybe you just make it moist by saturating it with syrup. Or you get over the fact that it looks ugly when it sinks in the middle because it tastes better that way. I don’t know.
Or maybe I just need to get married and register for some proper bakeware because I’m tired of buying my own bath towels and kitchen supplies. (Kidding.)
But before I run off and marry some Hollywood weirdo who wears fedoras with thrift store pants and Kicks just so I can register for swag at Sur la Table, I should mention I’m not the only one who has had sinking issues with this cake. If you read the reviews on Epicurious others mention the same problem. If you have any suggestions, or have a different experience making it. PLEASE LET ME KNOW.
The batter may actually be the most delicious batter on earth, and I should mention people psychotically love this cake. So, I might be crazy for being so superficial about its appearance.
Now that I’ve totally maligned this innocent cake, you can check out the recipe here. You’ll notice it’s made with powdered sugar and doesn’t have any leavening in it.
If you have questions about what baking pan to use when and why, this link is useful.
And now on to the chocolate cake, which you can check out here.