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[QUOTE="Norcalbaker59, post: 44896, member: 2340"] It is called doming. Below are the stages of baking. The batter in contact with the metal tin will of course go through these stages 1 - 7 as the heat from the metal triggers the chemical reactions. When too much heat is generated through the cake tin the batter sets to quickly around the edges, but the raw batter in the center continues to rise with the leavening, creating the low sides and the domed top. In some cakes, the heat is so extreme, the cake cracks open, like a volcanic eruptions. The factors that contribute to doming are: 1) Cake tins that are dark metal, coated with a non-stick coating, made of anodized aluminum. Since you use the term “tin” I assume you are in the UK. so plain uncoated aluminum is not available. if you have dark metal tins unfortunately they are the worst cake tins you can be using. I do not recommend them at all. even with a reduction of 25°F you’re going to get a very poor quality cake as they still cause over baking. With anodized aluminum reduce the baking temperature b 25°F, and with a couple adjusts you can get a decent cake. Aluminized steel (Chicago Metallic Commercial II Uncoated) will get you the best results. 2) Wrong baking temperature. most cake recipes state 350°F (170°C), this is the wrong temperature for cake. Cake should be baked at 325°F (160°C). Not only should cake bake level, but cake should not have a dry brown crust on it. A dry crust is a dry over baked. 3) Use cloth baking strips. Water boils at 212°F (100°C). When water boils it turns to steam. Water cannot get hotter than 212°F (100°C). The damp cloth baking strips provides a heat barrier around the cake tin. This allows the batter in contact with the tin to stay cooler, delaying the baking stages, and allowing the heat to spread toward the center of the batter for more even baking. Used with anodized aluminum you’ll get a little bit of browning but still a soft cake. With aluminized still your get a beautiful cake. 4) if you have a fan assisted oven if you can turn it off do so. If you cannot turn off the fan, definitely reduce your breaking temperature. [LIST=1] [*]Fats melts [*]Leavening triggered; CO2 expands dough [*]Starch gelatinization (thickening) occurs [*]Protein denaturation occurs (coagulation) [*]Water evaporates [*]Enzyme reactions cease [*]Maillard reaction occurs (browning) [*]Cooling re-solidify all ingredients that heat turned from solids to liquids during baking. [/LIST] Same cake batter, baked in same oven, same time. Only difference is cake tin used; cake on bottom was in Chicago Metallic Aluminized steel, cake on top was Anodized aluminum. To avoid over baking in anodized aluminum you need reduce temperature and cloth baking strips [ATTACH type="full"]3863[/ATTACH] Cloth baking strips are soaked in water, then excess is squeezed out. The damp cloth provides a heat barrier around the tin. Make sure you use a cloth strip manufactured for oven use. Or you can make a strip with wet paper towels and foil. But that is far more expensive in the long run and wasteful. [ATTACH type="full"]3860[/ATTACH] A properly baked cake is level. The sides and bottom will not have a crust on it. The top will crust, and that is unavoidable because of the hot air in the oven chamber. [ATTACH type="full"]3862[/ATTACH] but a properly baked cake should be moist enough that the top crust should be moist enough that it is easily removed without damaging the cake [ATTACH type="full"]3859[/ATTACH] When a cake is sliced and plated, there should be no crust lines between the buttercream and cake [ATTACH type="full"]3861[/ATTACH] [/QUOTE]