How to Bake a Taller Cake
I first heard about a technique called cake collaring several years ago, but just couldn't envision what I was supposed to be doing. I finally saw some pictures and I was like "oh...duh." So, if you haven't heard of collaring a cake and want to know a way to get your cake layers to rise taller, this post is for you.
This is one of the things I do to get my cake layers to rise taller. I was already lining my pans with parchment paper anyway, so this is just a little different way to do that.
The pictures I took for this tutorial are my 3-layer, 8" pans that are just 1-1/2 inches tall. My other cake pans are 2" tall so I get taller layers with them.
Once you have your bottom parchment piece in, cut rectangular strips that are about 1/2 inch higher than your pan. So, in this case my parchment collar was 2" in height (1/2 inch taller than my pan).
I use homemade "pan grease" to attach my parchment papers to my pan but you can also use shortening, butter,or baker's spray. The pan grease is just equal amount of vegetable oil, all-purpose flour and vegetable shortening. I usually make it in 1/4 cup amounts.
Spread the pan grease on the side of the parchment strips that will be attached to the pan. Be sure and overlap your strips. I find it is easier to work with shorter strips than try to put one or two long strips around. This is what it will look like:
Here is what it looks like with the cake batter:
Those things sticking up in the middle are flower nails. They are metal spikes with a flat top that are used to make roses and other flowers. I have a few that I use as a heating core in the middle of my cakes for more even heat distribution. If you do this, be sure and grease up the nail before you pour your batter in.
Here are the cakes just out of the oven:
The chocolate one rose over the height of the pan. One observation I made was that the thickest batter (chocolate) rose the highest, while the thinnest (strawberry) rose the least.
Here they are leveled and then stacked. I am happy with the height I got from these 1-1/2 inch pans using the parchment collars.
Finally, here is the finished cake: