June 9, 2023

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No Knives Required. This is a Far better Way to Minimize a Cake

8 min read

This story is section of Consider This, CNET’s selection of uncomplicated suggestions to increase your life, speedy.

Fragile piping: ruined. Frosting: a lengthy smear. Crumbs stacked on top of what utilized to be a completely iced cake. These are all indications you have utilised the mistaken instrument to minimize your cake — even if that device was a knife. No make a difference how sharp it is, every time I use a knife to cut into a cake, I am typically left with a gob of icing that I conclude up scraping onto someone’s plate to “clear” the blade for the subsequent slice. But what other choice do I have? Incredibly, a little day to day tool does the trick: dental floss.

A spool of dental floss tucks conveniently into a kitchen area or desk drawer, or a function bag, and it is generally at the completely ready. I a short while ago examined five forms of dental floss to slash three kinds of cake. The outcome: some of the cleanest slices that would make any qualified bakery happy. I’m not kidding. This method operates fantastically effectively, and it is really astonishingly easy to do. 

The only drawback: Using floss may not be the most stylish way to slice cake slices and you may possibly get icing on your fingers. But the results are well worth it. This is how to cut your cake with floss, which form of floss operates very best and some pitfalls you must totally prevent. For far more interesting methods, this is how to make distilled drinking water for absolutely free and how to halt junk mail for great.

@cnetdotcom Your #cake might taste a bit #minty depending on the floss you pick. #lifehack#dentalfloss#trythis#didyouknow#cookinghacks#baking#howtotok♬ son first – SHIMMYA

Why use dental floss to slash a cake?

There may possibly be a selection of good reasons you reach for the dental floss in its place of a knife for chopping cake. Maybe you are in the place of work or at a birthday celebration in the park and the only available reducing utensil is a 6-inch compostable knife. Perhaps you’re exhausted of buttercream buildup and want to try one thing new. One particular colleague saved the working day at a celebration when a giant cube cake appeared at a bar that did not have utensils for friends to use. The good thing is, the container of floss she had on hand did the position.

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This is why it will work: A strand of floss is commonly thinner than the regular kitchen area knife blade, and it’s made to slide easily as a result of tight spaces (that is, concerning your enamel). If you have at any time flossed way too aggressively, sore gums are all the proof you will need that the floss “edge” can be sharp. 

Incorporate them jointly and you have a fairly best instrument that can get you neat, cleanse slices immediately after cutting. Even though slicing by 1 cake, I could barely see exactly where the floss sliced via the frosting since the cuts have been so neat. 

In my knowledge, working with dental floss to slice cake also did a superior task of preserving the delicate decorations. For occasion, the carrot cake I made use of for this exam had a piped carrot design and style on prime of the cake. Slicing by it with the floss kept that layout intact. In my experience, making use of a butcher knife to slice via decorations usually spoils the glimpse, leaving a smeared design and style — but it relies upon on the sharpness, width and size of the knife blade.

And that issue of accumulated frosting on the edge of the knife? Largely absent — with the exception of buildup on your fingers.

cake cut with floss

Pro suggestion: Slide the floss via the bottom of the cake for a cleaner slash.

Katie Teague/CNET

How to minimize any cake making use of dental floss

1st, make confident your cake is on a flat surface so you have home to pull the floss all the way to the cake’s bottom. You could place it on a cake stand to give you much more room as you slice down. Next, spool out a size of floss more substantial than the widest aspect of the cake. I left quite a few inches on every conclusion to wrap the floss all around my fingers comfortably. When you wrap the floss about your fingers, don’t make it tremendous restricted: You might be attempting to lower cake, not your fingers. 

If you happen to be attempting to make each individual slice the exact same measurement, you may want to use the floss to evenly mark guidebook lines just before slicing by the cake. 

All set? Here’s what to do.

Sq. or rectangular cake: If the cake is shaped like a sq. or rectangle, it may perhaps be a lot easier to reduce since all those cakes are generally shorter than spherical cakes. Utilizing your floss, make your cuts across the cake lengthwise, pressing firmly into the cake to slash all the way by means of. Now make your cuts widthwise, slicing to the base of the cake. 

Round cake: If your cake is shaped like a circle, it is really perhaps a layer cake so you may require to use a little bit extra force to make it all the way to the base of the cake. Employing your floss, firmly slash by way of the center of the cake to produce two halves — you may perhaps need to go the floss in a sawing movement to totally cut it. 

Then, make a perpendicular minimize to the just one you just manufactured — you must now have 4 triangles. Proceed creating cuts, going about the cake, until you have the amount of slices you need to have. Note that the thinner you want your slices, the more difficult it will be to cut mainly because the slices start out slipping apart.

cake cut with floss

Floss is better for chopping thinner slices of cake.

Katie Teague/CNET

Can you also use dental floss to provide cake slices?

To see if it was attainable, I attempted to pick up a slice of cake with floss. It was tough and variety of labored, but the floss bit by bit cut by way of the spongy texture as I attempted to get rid of the slice. I propose using a fork or serving knife to produce slices to a plate, alternatively.

My pro suggestion for cutting cake with floss

When you happen to be creating cuts, at the time you’ve got sliced to the base, don’t pull the floss back again up. To start with, performing that will make your floss messier, which signifies you can expect to need to get a new strand just about every time you make a reduce. But extra critical, pulling the slice again up brings crumbs to the top of your cake and pulls up a bit of the frosting too, so you really don’t get the thoroughly clean, tidy glimpse you might be immediately after. 

As a substitute, once you’ve sliced all the way through to the base of the cake, permit go of just one close and pull the floss out. Most of the icing and crumbs on the floss will be swept off as you slip the floss out, and you can expect to be left with a clean strand that you can reuse to minimize the next slice. 

This is wherever the floss didn’t do its work

When slicing the much larger cakes, I seen the floss sometimes didn’t very easily slash all the way to the bottom, probably since of the elevated resistance. If this occurs to you, I propose cutting the cake in 50 percent 1st and then performing with just about every fifty percent so you can find a lot less cake — and resistance — to slash as a result of. It may also help to place the cake on a stand to enable you slice all the way as a result of.

Yet another be aware: If you happen to be baking a cake at household, this method will not likely function except if you clear away the cake from the baking dish or cake pan 1st. 

Nice even slices of carrot cake

Awesome even slices of cake.

Katie Teague/CNET

Which variety of floss worked ideal

For my tests, I applied waxed floss from Kroger, two types from Oral-B Glide (a single mint flavored, the other unflavored), and two models from CVS’ shop model: a thicker, waxed dental tape and a typical, unwaxed floss. I attempted the floss sorts on three cakes: A layer carrot cake made up of bits of grated carrot, one taller and lighter texture sheet cake, and just one shorter and denser sheet cake (pretty much like brownies).

All the floss worked wonderful and built neat cuts, even with the bits of carrot from the additional textured sample cake. The Glide original floss sliced through the cakes a little bit simpler than the Kroger waxed floss. I think it really is for the reason that the Glide floss felt smoother to the touch and actually did glide through the cake. 

Even with my currently being nervous that it would snag, the unwaxed floss worked astonishingly properly and manufactured neat slices.

The only 1 that smeared a little bit when creating a slice was the dental tape — which seems to be far more like a ribbon than a thread of nylon floss. It made a clean up slice, while, and I’d use it in a pinch. 

Flavored vs. unflavored floss: Will it transform the flavor of your cake?

I was worried about regardless of whether utilizing flavored floss would also transfer taste to the cake slices, but we slice parts of a chocolate sheet cake utilizing mint-flavored floss and none of the four style-testers could detect a minty taste. To be protected, I would adhere with plain, unflavored floss if you can, and steer away from cinnamon or coconut or bubblegum flavors. 

So the next time you happen to be cutting cake, reach for the dental floss or one thing comparable — like fishing line, sewing string or a slim wire. 

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