Now for the meat...cake...something...of this post.
I have come to the conclusion that I hate baking cakes. At least...I hate baking cakes in my oven...
It is an apartment sized oven, so two round cake pans do not fit side by side, and apparently said oven is not level either, so that means that my round cakes are uneven, which makes everything just that much more difficult to work with.
Let me tell you about the last two cakes I
The first was my sister's birthday cake. I was really excited (yet also very nervous) about this one! White cake, with each layer cut in half, lemon butter in between each layer, and white icing. Doesn't sound so difficult, right? The main thing I was worried about while making this cake was cutting each layer in half, so I (since I was being marginally lazy, and didn't want to ruin a from-scratch cake), bought two cake mixes...JUST IN CASE. And good thing, too.
So, I bake my first cake...and after trying to fit both pans in the oven at the same time, ending with them being diagonal to each other, and having to turn them when they partially cooked, they came out of the pans easily, and were set on the cooling rack to cool before I sliced them in half. One of the rounds was uneven...but I could deal with that.
And then, after about an hour of cooling, I picked up one of the rounds, oh so carefully, to put it on a plate and into the fridge for 15 minutes so it was even easier to cut in half...and it broke. Yep, it broke. Boy did that make me unhappy.
Good thing I had another cake mix, right?
So I started baking that one. Again, everything came out fine, other than being a little uneven, it cooled, I put it in the fridge, and then began the slicing. A little uneven, since I can't cut anything in a straight line, but, whatever! It worked! So, I started putting the lemon butter in between the layers....and then I let it sit on the table for 5 minutes. Oops. Bad idea. When I came back into the kitchen, the entire thing had slid off. Thanks, lemon butter. So, I tried to make it stand upright again, and put it in the fridge so it set a little, and got to making the icing.
This is when disaster number 438729432 of the day came about. I start mixing up the icing with my trusty hand mixer, mixing, mixing, mixing....and then not mixing anymore. Oh, yes, I burned the motor out in that hand mixer of mine....halfway through making the icing. Deep breaths ensued. Luckily my sister said that I could come down to her place early and finish it off there. So I start packing everything up, open the fridge to take the cake out and......it slid some more and the layer of cake broke. Good thing my sister just wanted to eat the cake and didn't really care how it looked...right?
More sliding occured during my half hour drive down south to her house. Once I was there, I finished making the icing, and started icing the cake. I randomly decided to plop that third extra layer of cake on top so that maybe the top of the cake wouldn't look so disastrous. And it didn't! The top looked really pretty. Thanks to my sister-in-law, who told me how to make nice looking roses on top with a decorating tip. But the sides? Oh boy. The sides of the cake looked like they were decorated by a 3 year old. *facepalm*
My sister got a good laugh out of it, and at least it tasted good.
Cake baking disaster #2.
A friend came over a couple of weeks ago, because we decided we wanted to bake a cake, and I found what I thought was a really good recipe. So, we mix up the cake (with a whisk since, well, my hand mixer's motor blew during the last cake disaster), and stick it in the oven diagonally. It's baking...and baking...and...why does it smell like it's burning? Crap. I open the oven door, and the cake has overflowed onto the bottom of the oven, cooking onto the burner, and smoking like crazy. Sigh. We take the cakes (not anywhere near cooked, mind you), out of the oven, open windows, leave the oven door open, and toss the cakes. Now my entire apartment smells like fire. Including me, and my hair. I hate when that happens. How freaking annoying. Then, I had to scrape partially cooked/burnt/raw cake from the bottom of my oven. Ew. Good thing I apparently always have backup cake mixes? After venturing out at midnight to try to find some eggs since we used all of what I had, we came back and successfully made cupcakes. Because, yes, cupcakes I can do. Even if they were in halloween cupcake papers.
Moral of the story? ...I should only bake cupcakes or 9x13 cakes in my oven. Nothing else will do...at least not until my sister's birthday next year, since I will always make a cake for her if we live in the same city, no matter what I have to go through!