What is a cake leveler?
Baking is a very interesting task if you have the right baking gadget like a cake leveler. A kitchen without a complete gadget is like a Yin without a Yang. Most times I bake a layered cake and I know how stressful it could be using a pallet knife to level your cake or divide it into two. Obviously! You know you are using the wrong tool. As a good baker, you must have a cake leveler in your kitchen else your tools are not complete.
A cake leveler is a baking tool with a saw-like shape used to trim the top of a cake or divide a cake into two halves. There are several types of cake leveler. We have the wire cake leveler, serrated blade leveler, cake bread cutter and the cake slicer ring.
While I was learning how to bake, I could remember reading in books to use a knife to level my cake. But each time I try it no matter how careful I was it was never straight and this frustrated me a lot. Until I learned about the cake leveler which was so inexpensive and cut my cake straight without giving me a sweat.
This awesome baking tool helps to trim or flatten the top of cakes, slice the cake into two equal half. Sometimes even when I have a very good pan I still trim my cake to give me that perfect flat surface. Yes, you could say am a perfectionist but customers appreciate that surface looking like a mattress.
I use both the serrated blade cake leveler and the simple wire leveler. I use the serrated blade cake leveler for large cakes because of the gadget as a wider stance. It’s also foldable hence very easy for me to store it or move around. You need to see this tool work, it just slices through easily. The wire cake leveler on the other works its magic best on small cakes and because the tool is easy to adjust I find it very easy to use.
How to use a cake leveler
If you only bake without decorating, you might not see the need to level your cake. But for those of us that decorate often, you will agree with me that leveling is a must. I noticed people go for the wire cake leveler more than the serrated blade cake leveler. Therefore, I will be teaching how to use the wire cake leveler but you can watch out for how to use serrated leveler in the subsequent post.
Place your cake on a flat surface. A countertop or table preferably so that the cake will be sitting straight. No bends.
Adjust the wire to your desired height. For trimming, I usually place my wire at a height close to the lowest edge of the cake so as not to over-reduce your cake.
Having placed your cake rightly and the wire correctly position, I slide my cake leveler back and forth. In the process of this pendulum motion, the wire will saw through the cake.
After cutting through the cake, remove the wire by placing your hands on the direction which the wire is coming out from and remove it gently. The wire is not sharp so you don’t have to worry about any cut.
Note: if you are dividing a cake into halves, the procedure is the same as the above except for few additions.
If you want to divide a cake into halves you have to first measure the cake after it has been leveled. Find the center and mark it with a serrated blade or pin the spot with a toothpick. Then you adjust your wire cake leveler to the desired height and start cutting. Furthermore, when cutting through make sure you place your hands slightly on the cake to exert pressure and make the cake firm.
It’s quite easier to level a cool cake than a warm cake. Leveling a cake when cool helps to reduce or avoid crumbs.
While starting to cut a cake, mostly a super cool cake, you can start off with a serrated knife. When the cake cools too long, the side of the cake dries out. This could make it difficult to cut with a wire. It’s best you make a small cut at the edge with a serrated knife before using a wire.
Your turn! Tell us what you think we have omitted and your opinions while using a cake leveler. You can also discuss more on this cake forum.