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Can my cake be saved?

  • m
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In the interest of time, last night I decided to mix, in advance, all the dry ingredients for a devil's food cake. I was supposed to add flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. But I honestly can't remember if I added the salt! (Got a phone call right in the middle of this task.) What would happen if I baked the cake and there wasn't any salt in it? Or would it be better to add a teaspoon of salt, possibly doubling the amount called for? Any suggestions? Many thanks.

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  1. I suggest you leave out the salt and forge ahead. If you've forgotten it, the cake may lack a slight balance or complexity of flavor, but it should still be good. If you put in too much, the taste of the salt will come through and ruin it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Buttercup

      Not to simply be contrarian, but I take the opposite view to Buttercup. Especially if you're not using salted butter, I would say you're better off with twice as much salt than with none.

      Remember, salt is not just for taste. It's also a leavener.

    2. Taste a small amount of the mix. You should be able to tell if there's salt in it or not. Without salt, the finished cake would be lacking.

      1 Reply
      1. re: GG Mora

        I tried that, but since there's baking soda in the mix, it tastes salty because of that. Any other ideas? I always follow your posts!

      2. Looks like there's no consensus. Let us know what you decide and how it turns out!

        1. I'd add HALF the required amount of salt. That way, the balance won't be thrown off either way.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sir Gawain

            I second this suggestion.

          2. I don't know if this will work, but how about take a few spoonful of the mix, add some liquid and cook it, maybe like pancake, then taste it? I'm assume after cooking the baking soda taste will be gone and you'll be able to tell if you added salt or not.

            Otherwise, I'd say add half also.

            1. For those of you interested, I had just enough cake flour to mix another batch. Then I took about a teaspoon of each mixture and compared. Luckily, I used kosher salt, so it was actually possible to see a few tiny crystals (used my husband's magnifying glass).
              Thanks so much for all your help. I would have gone with the option of adding half the amount of salt if I need to use the original batch.