Shital's-Kitchen: How to Bake a Perfect Cake?

Sunday, January 13, 2013

How to Bake a Perfect Cake?

Last week it was my first cake decoration class where we learned basic of cake baking. So now to put those tricks and skills into practice, I baked a basic vanilla cake. Snehanshu loves Tres Leches flavored cake so here I am trying to make this delicious millk soaked cake for him.

My next class on frosting and decoration is tomorrow. I am planning on baking a chocolate cake with butter cream icing. I am so excited for my next class.

So here is what I do:

I start with a Betty Croker's Vanilla flavored cake mix. Instead of adding water, I added 1 cup milk to eggs and oil. 

First mix wet ingredients and then add the cake mix to avoid lumps. Mix well to form a smooth batter.

Preheat oven to 350F. To prepare cake molds, I used two 9 inches round pans. If you want to make a layered cake, it is always better to bake 2 cakes and layer it with the filling. Grease the pans with Pam, baking spray. Place a piece of parchment paper in the center so that the baked cake leaves the pan without leaving any crumbs.

I have tried baking a cake earlier and it would always turn out to be uneven; that is rising more in the center than the sides.  This is because sides of the pan heat up faster. As a result, it cooks the cake batter towards the sides of the pan faster making the center rise higher.
In this class I learned to bake a leveled cake.
Wilton has a great product, A Baking strip.
If we do not let the sides of the pan heat faster, the entire cake bakes at the same time and evenly.
I did not have baking strip (basically a belt to put onto the side of the pan). So I used a regular bounty (paper towel). I folded the paper towel 3 times to get the desired height, same as the pan. Length of the paper towel strip should be same or more than the circumference of the pan.

Wet the strip well with water. and wrap it around the pan. Fix it with a pin if needed.

Divide the cake batter into 2 parts and fill in each of the cake pans. Spread them evenly. Tap the pans lightly to avoid air bubbles.

Bake in preheated oven for the amount of time listed in the instructions. Mine took 25 minutes.

Test by inserting a toothpick in the center of the cake. If it comes out clean, cake is baked.

Cool the cake on the cooling racks.

Allow the cakes to cool completely. Invert it over a cake board or plate. The cake comes out clean leaving no traces in the pan. 
A well cooked, leveled, soft cake!

Your Cake it ready for frosting and decorating.

Tres Leches means 3 types of milk. This cake is soaked in milk which makes it super soft and delicious that melts in your mouth.

Mix 2 cups half and half, 1 cup evaporated milk and 1 cup condensed milk.

Using a fork or skewer poke holes into baked, cooled cake.

Pour milk mixture over poked cake. 

Let the cake rest in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours.
to soak milk.

To make whipped cream frosting, whip 2 cups heavy whipping cream with 4 tbsps. confectionery sugar till it reaches soft peak consistency. Fold soft whipped cream cheese.

Add colorless vanilla extract to have a snow white frosting.

 Here is my new turn table to frost the cake :)

 Gently remove soaked cake and place it on the cake board or a plate.
Apply a thin layer of filling of your choice. I used the same filling with pieces of strawberry.

Gently place another layer of the cake inverted over the filling. This step is really difficult since the cake soaked it milk is delicate and moist.

Frost the sides and the top with whipped cream icing.

I used an icing smoother to get an even icing on and around the cake. I know I need to practice more and get it better next time.

Happy Birthday my Dear!


  1. I will surely ...absolutely try this. Iwho doesn't tres leches ... Absoluely nice post...Applause to my friend Shital ... Yay!

    1. Thanks dear, In fact I was remembering you a lot yesterday :)

  2. Thanks for sharing the recipe Shital. Love tresleces.Can we substitute eggs with something?

    1. Sheetal, if you have a basic eggless cake recipe, you could use that. I haven't tried eggless recipe since a long time but I was thinking of the same because my parents don't eat egg. I will try out eggless cake soon.

  3. Shital, came here thru epicurean delights.. am trying ur basic bread loaf now :) I hope it turns out fine.. i have tried eggless cakes couple kf times but they end up disastrous :( Your posts make me want to give a try again, can you pls let me in which classes you attended? I live in bay area. TIA!

    1. Did you try my eggless cake recipe? I hope your bread was a success and you liked it. I attended Wilton's cake decoration class at Michael's Craft store.

  4. Cake looks too good.
    Can you please share the recipe to bake a vanilla cake?

  5. If you want fresh and delicious cake for special occasion then order cake from They provide online delivery of cake.