It’s really important to use a stable cake if you are stacking a naked cake. Mud cakes or vanilla cakes work really well as they are sturdy and easy to handle and stack. Sponge cakes can be a struggle as they are quite flimsy.
Line your tins so that the baking paper rises tall above the pan (around 5cm over the pan) so that the sides of your cake do not burn.
Use baking strips or line the outside of your tin with brown paper or newspaper. This will protect your cake from the heat and ensure it rises evenly with minimal ‘doming’.
Bake your cake as close to the day of your soiree so it’s as fresh as possible.
Allow your cake to cool. I usually cool the cake on my kitchen bench then place it in the fridge (in an air tight container) over night. It’s so much easier to work with a cold cake!
Cut off any sugary crusty parts off the top of your cake. Carefully measure all the way around your cake and ensure that each slice is the same height. I use a ruler and mark the outside with a tiny slice or you can use toothpicks.
Slice evenly using a serrated knife and you should be left with 2 or 3 slices per cake.
A naked cake does not have the added protection of ganache or fondant to stop it from drying out. Make yourself a batch of sugar syrup (equal parts sugar and water boiled for a few minutes and cooled). This will keep your cake nice and soft and stop it from drying out.
Using a pastry brush lightly coat each slice of cake with sugar syrup before you start stacking.
As much as I love whipped cream and berries a naked cake may not be the best place for this kind of filling – especially if your event is outdoors! I usually use a buttercream or ganache. They firm up nicely and don’t squish out the sides. If you would like to read about the different fillings for cakes then click here. I wrote a blog post dedicated to this topic!
Keep it simple. Fresh berries or fruits, fresh flowers, meringues, nuts and even sprinkles.
Think about the colour of your cake. A dark cake such as a chocolate mud looks great but needs something to brighten it up – like bright flowers. A light cake like vanilla or white chocolate mud are well suited to any type of flower or colour so it’s less of a concern.
If you would like to read about inserting fresh flowers into a cake click here. I wrote a blog post dedicated to this topic!
Have fun with it! Happy baking lovers! xxx