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Old 07-02-2005, 01:09 AM   #1
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Cake is Dry and Nasty....What's the Purpose of Butter?

I got a recipe for cake and it tastes pretty good before going into the oven, but once it comes out, it's really dry and hard. I was watching it cook and noticed there there were little pockets along the edges were steam was coming out. I did add water while mixing the batter.

I started looking for other recipes to compare. I noticed some differences. First of all, there is no butter. Does butter help make it less dry? Second, there is no sugar, but I can't see that causing this problem. The third difference, is it uses cottage cheese instead of milk.

If I get rid of the cottage cheese and use milk, think that would fix the problem, or does butter and/or sugar need to be added?


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Old 07-02-2005, 01:20 AM   #2
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I'd start with posting the exact recipe you used. Then the experts can jump in and steer you back in the right direction.


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Old 07-02-2005, 01:26 AM   #3
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1.5 Cups Flour
1 Cup Chocolate Powder
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
.5 Teaspoon Baking Soda
4 Egg Whites
1 Cup Cottage Cheese
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Old 07-02-2005, 06:06 AM   #4
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Where did you get this recipe? Is it supposed to be a dessert? I cannot imagine a 'cake' recipe w/out some sort of sweetener - sugar, corn syrup, honey - .
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Old 07-02-2005, 08:19 AM   #5
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I guess it would be more like a muffin than cake. The chocolate powder is sweetened. They taste pretty good if they weren't rock hard. The bottom is definitely the hardest. How do I keep the moisture in?
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Old 07-02-2005, 08:36 AM   #6
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Couple of things right off. Fat is what gives a cake its moist texture. Cake recipes that omit cooking oil or butter include fat rich ingredients such as mayonaise, cream, or even 4% milk-fat cottage cheese. The steam, and later the water escapes from all cakes, which is why they dry out wehn sitting uncovered. The oil does not evaporate and keeps the cake moist and tender.

Mayo is a combination of oil, egg, vinegar, and spices. The oil helps keep the cake moist, while the vinegar reacts with the baking soda to raise the cake while it's cooking. The egg protien helps give the cake body.

Your recipe should also include some kind of sweetener, whether it be honey, syrup, sugar, or something like Splenda.

Dry cake usually means either the cake was baked too long, or there wasn't enough fat in the batter.

I'd guess the latter. Add a third cup of either melted butter or cooking oil.

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Old 07-03-2005, 01:37 AM   #7
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Wow - what fun! Somewhere in the back of my poor old mind I think I've seen an Italian cake that was something like this - but the ingredients you listed seem off from what I remember.

Like Zereh said, the exact recipe would help (not just the list of ingredients you used) - the original recipe with the ingredients it called for, and how they were to be mixed and baked - and anything you changed in the recipe. As marmalady said, where did you get this recipe? It's origin might give some clues. Hey, what's it called?

Like Goodweed said - tough and dense could be a lack of fat, sugar, moisture -or- the flour was the wrong kind and had too hight a gluten/protein content (such as the recipe called for cake flour and you used all purpose) -or- the batter was mixed too long after the wet and dry ingredients were combined -or- baked too long -or- baked at too high a temp.

Is this a single layer cake or are you making muffins? Was it a cake you tried to bake in a muffin pan - or vice versa?

One final thought that is really nagging me - about the "cottage" cheese. You didn't post where you live (not even a country) so it's hard to guess what you think cottage cheese is. Cottage cheese is a soft moist cheese (like Ricotta) - but here in the USA most people think of cottage cheese as being the stuff that comes in tubs that are either small curd or large curd that they eat with slices of pineapple when on a diet.

To borrow from Paul Harvey's famous line ... "what's the rest of the story?" We can sit around and tell you what can cause a problem like you had - but without all the details we can't help you fix this specific recipe.

"It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain
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