Professionals tend to categorize their cakes by mixing methods and ingredients, while home bakers usually categorize them by flavoring. There are many kinds of cakes and methods of preparing them out there, and even the slightest variation can result in a different texture, color, and taste.
Here are some of the best basic cake types that everyone should know:
Any recipe that asks you to cream together the butter and sugar is known as a butter cake. Once the creaming process is done, you need to add eggs for aerating the batter, flour for texture and structure, and baking soda or powder to make sure that it rises while in the oven. Different cake batters in the butter cake family can include yellow, white, chocolate, and marble. Yellow and white cakes usually depend on whether they have extra egg yolks, or only egg whites.
Pound cake is related to butter cake in many ways. Its name comes from the fact that its ingredients are all proportionate to a pound—a pound of butter, sugar, eggs, and flour. Certain recipes might call for egg whites to be separated and whipped before being folded into the batter for leavening. Other recipes might require baking soda or powder, which brings it even closer to being a normal butter cake.
These lightly flavored cakes are usually served plain and can be topped with a simple water icing or glaze. Pound cakes are usually baked in Bundt or loaf pans, and most coffee cakes or fruit crumb cakes are variations of this cake.
Sponge cakes contain no baking powder or baking soda, but they do have plenty of whipped eggs to aerate the mixture to make it super fluffy. Sponge cakes have many different variations and can be known by different names depending on where you are. These delicious cakes can be layered with flavored curd and served with clotted cream in gentle flavors.
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