I’ve talked about different things you can do to get a full cake layer with a flatter top including the amount of batter you use, using Bake Even Strips and heating cores. The next step is to level and torte them.
My oven has a slight lean to it, which makes my cakes bake with a lean. I try to remember to turn them half way through baking to help even out, but I often forget. And really that is okay, because 99% of the time I am going to trim it to make it level.
When is the 1% of the time that I don’t trim? When using the 8x3in pan by itself.
For the rest of the cakes, I trim the tops even. I use the Cake Leveler for this. Set it to the height that you want the cakes to be at. When using the leveler, start with it closest to you and slide your hand through the leveler to place it on the top of the cake. You will lightly saw, moving the leveler to the left and right, through the cake. Peel off the top layer that has now been cut off.
Do this for each layer of cake that you will be using.
With most of my cakes I would also torte the two layers I am using. Remember we torte, cut the cake in half, using the leveler the same way as described above.
For the cake I used above I did not want to torte it because I felt it would have taken away from the zebra effect. Here is a quick picture I snapped of another cake I was working on that I did torte the layers.