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Jan 29, 2011 05:56 AM

Undercooked Dundee cake - rescue or write-off?

A temperamental oven meant that the large Christmas Dundee cake didn't bake as well as it should have. Two thirds of it were perfect, but the middle section was undercooked. Is it salvagable? Was thinking of putting it in the oven for 40 mins on a low heat.

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  1. I have a radical suggestion that you may or may not want to consider. You've invested lots of ingredients and time already, so I'd try to salvage it. Since the outer part of the cake is perfectly cooked, any more baking will probably ruin it. Here's what I'd do.

    Remove the cake from the pan, then start scooping out the center imperfectly baked section. When you've scooped out most of it, get a serrated knife and make a neat cut around the baked inner area. You should now have a cake that looks like it was made in a tube pan. If you have a kitchen torch, you could even use that to brown the inside edge of the cake. If it still doesn't look terribly neat, serve it pre-sliced. The slices will be smaller, but who's to know? Serve as a "wee" Dundee cake. The judicious use of whipped cream can cover flaws if you'd like. For the remaining batter/crumbs previously scooped out - mix them together and put them in muffin tins or ramekins to bake and make a nice cook's treat. And if all else fails, make a custard, pour over the crumbled cake and call it a Dundee triffle.

    4 Replies
    1. re: sancan

      Eminently sensible suggestions. My problem was always tending to overbake fruitcakes so once I read they should be at 190 deg f when done I've been taking their temperatures in the middle - no failures since.

      1. re: buttertart

        Ah... I never take temps, just do the skewer/knife test (which came out clean)

        Live and learn!

        1. re: makecakenotwar

          Try it next time - can you salvage it as sancan suggests? It would be more difficult if in pastry, is it? If so I'd try baking it for another hour or so at say 300 deg f in a water bath, so the outside doesn't overcook.

          1. re: buttertart

            I replied to Sancan (unless I'm going a little mad - I am sleep deprived) explaining how the cooked part has long been eaten so just left with the undercooked part. No pastry... I like Sancan's idea of cooking smaller portions in muffin tins, and I was also thinking of adding crumbled cake to scotch pancakes. Do you think there would be any health problems with rebaking? The cake was originally baked in early November, and I'm always a litttle too cautious when it comes to things like that!

    2. I'd be really leery of doing anything with it in that case - due to the eggs in it. Does it smell right? Was it refrigerated all along? If the latter, maybe (but I really think I'd bin it, sorry).