The usual class is a fruit cake, and this can be easily over or under cooked, split topped or sunken centered. There is no excuse for using a different recipe or other size of tin from what the schedule demands, but cakes from the same recipe can vary enormously.
The commonest faults
|Outside cooked too much whilst centre undercooked
|Slower longer cooking at lower temperature.
|Uneven fruit distribution
|Mix with care. Mixture is too liquid, so fruit sinks. Some people dry the fruit first and coat it in dry flour before it is mixed in.
|Cracked top – the ‘big smile’ cake
|Slow even cooking – expand contents before top makes a crust that has to split under pressure from below.
|Lack of honey flavour or smell
|Use a good honey with a flavour that shows.
|Cover the top of the cake with paper whilst cooking. This also helps with the cracking problem
|Poor crumb structure – puddingy texture
|Use only the best ingredients, flour in particular.