When I was first asked about doing a 16" x 24" sheet cake, I don't think I
really understood just how much cake that was! I was asked to come up
with a list of flavor options and in typical fashion, I proceeded to pick some
of the most complicated recipes I've ever attempted... which in hindsight, might not have been a smart decision for a cake of this size!!
The first obstacle I ran into was that my oven is not large enough to bake a
cake of this size... but that is simply solved by piecing together a number of
smaller cakes. The second obstacle I ran into is that cake boards are not sold
in any kitchen stores for a cake of this size. Ming Wo, however, was kind enough to order in a gigantic cake board on special order. The third obstacle I encountered was that this enormous cake board would not fit in my fridge,
meaning that the cake had to be assembled and decorated at the last possible moment leaving no room for error!
The cake flavor picked for this job was a Black and White Chocolate Cake
which features four layers of vanilla buttermilk cake with alternating layers of
dark chocolate pastry cream and white chocolate whipped cream. Since I'd never made pastry cream, I did a trial run of the recipe the weekend before and luckily, everything went very smoothly and it is a delicious cake.
I did some conversions on the amount of cake batter that would be required
and I bought all of the supplies I would need. I started the cake the day before it was to be delivered and after a morning of baking, I realized I would need double the amount of cake that I had estimated since the layers were too thin to torte... So I had to go buy more supplies and get back in the kitchen. At the end of the day, this cake took me 22 hours and contained 13 pounds of chocolate (white chocolate and bittersweet chocolate combined), 64 eggs and over 4 pounds of butter!!
The sheet cake is decorated fairly simply based on the advertisement for the
fundraiser the cake was for. I attempted to mimic the font from the ad and piped on flowers and music bars. Now that I've had some time to recover from the exhaustion, I'm fairly happy with how this cake turned out!
This blog will follow my adventures with cake, pastry and all things sweet!