Cake Mixing Like the Pros with the Two-Stage Method
Wedding cake mixing techniques are always more important than cake baking temperatures. I demonstrated this in an earlier blog by using a butter wedding cake recipe to demonstrate the creaming method. This technique combines butter and sugar to trap air, then uses egg yolks to form an emulsification.
The limiting factor of the creaming method is that butter is not 100 percent fat. Butter is composed of 85 percent fat, about 10 percent water and 5 percent milk solids. With less excess fat, butter will hold much less liquid during an emulsification. This means a drier, tougher dessert.
To make a very moist pastry, a greater amount of liquid is needed, and shortening will keep more water in a cake batter than butter will. Regular shortening is usually 100 percent fats. In the professional bake shop, we use an ingredient called high-ratio shortening. This special type of extra fat creates an even better emulsification in cake formulas with a greater quantity of liquid.
The Two-Stage cake mixing method uses this high ratio shortening to create an extremely moist, soft texture, but firm structure cake. The White Whisper Dessert that I create in the accompanying video uses this method.
The two-stage method differs from the creaming method because shortening and flour are combined, rather than butter and sugar, in the first step. The purpose in the creaming method was to capture air flow. However, the purpose in the two-stage method is to simply combine the ingredients because the great amount of liquid is what will leaven the wedding cake, not trapped atmosphere.
Sugar, vanilla and milk are added to the fat and flour mixture, which is where the two stages of the two-stage technique begin. This dessert combining method gets its name from alternating flour, liquid, and after that flour and liquefied in two phases to get as much liquid into the formula as possible.
If yours been disappointed with dry cakes and recipes that didn’t come out examine the pastry blending methods that your using. When you switch from butter and sugars in a creaming technique, to the two-stage method that professionals make use of with shortening and flour, you’ll never be subject to a disappointing formula again. You become smarter than the recipe because you know the strategies behind them.