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I have several cupcake recipes. I know it's easy to convert to a cake (just adjust baking time and figure out correct pan size). My question is many of the cupcake recipes have a filling that is (for the most part) just sort of stabbed into the baked cupcake using a squeeze bottle. These fillings are usually between artificial maple syrup and pudding in consistency/thickness. If I want to use the filling, how would I incorporate it into the cake other than repeatedly "stabbing" the cake in various places? A google search only tells me to tort the cake, but I'd like to leave it in a single layer if possible (plus I don't think the cupcake fillings would hold up to be filling layer in a layered cake).

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    If it's thick, I'd slice it and fill it ... but don't overfill, or you can create a slip-plane where the cake won't hold together any more. For the syrups, poking with holes and letting it soak in is fairly common in cake recipes. – Joe Dec 22 '14 at 18:57
  • Joe, the fillings aren't thick enough to create a layer. Plus, I'd like to have them as a single layer cake if possible. – Brooke Dec 23 '14 at 13:38
  • You might be able to use it as a glaze on top of the cake, but then you might have difficulty getting any frosting to adhere well. (you could probably still pipe it out of a bag, though). If the glaze doesn't want to stay in place, you can either start off by piping a ring of frosting on the outer edge, or trying to find a 'mary ann pan' – Joe Dec 23 '14 at 15:36
  • Joe, that might work. I could spread it over the top of the cake while it's still warm and wait until it's cool to frost. I could probably use my angel food cake cutter to poke lots of holes to encourage it to soak in a little better. – Brooke Dec 23 '14 at 19:23
  • if you can't get in far enough with the angel food cake cutter, my mom would just poke her cakes repeatedly with a skewer when she was trying to get syrups or alcohol to soak in. – Joe Dec 23 '14 at 21:48
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A syringe (or baster, but a syringe will be better) A LOT of holes, and frosting to hide the holes (though they will be pretty small if you use a syringe.)

Given the comment that "I don't want it to be like several filled donuts joined together where it's not consistent" in combination with a refusal to consider layering it, you need

  1. a dense pattern of holes and
  2. a measured amount of filling in each hole.

So, for a 9x13 pan, you might be looking at 8x12 = 96 holes an inch apart, starting 1/2 inch from the edge, each filled with 1/96th of your total amount of filling. Adjust as needed for other size cakes and how well an inch apart suits your idea of "consistent" - you could go to 17x25 holes 1/2 inch apart and 1/4 inch from the edge, but it's going to be rather tedious.

Or you could TRY a more cake-centric approach - half the batter, the filling, half the batter, bake. It might fail miserably, it might "work" for some value of "work," it might require changing the filling to get a better value of "work." Certainly marble cakes and pudding cakes do things of this nature at the batter stage before baking.

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Even in industrial baking, pastries are typically filled by poking a hole in the pastry and filling them by hand. At least this was my experience with some equipment design provisions my company made for a prominent Midwestern U.S. donut factory. Your best bet is likely finding a way to conceal the hole rather than avoiding it.

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    I've never seen an industrially made full-size cake filled through a hole. Maybe it's just not usual here, but I can imagine that it's just not done. – rumtscho Dec 23 '14 at 18:16
  • How do you normally see it done? – Ben Mordecai Dec 23 '14 at 18:30
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    If a full size cake has a filling, I've only seen it made of separate layers, with the filling smeared on the layers. I've only seen injection used for baked goods you eat by biting pieces off, never in ones large enough to be cut in portions. – rumtscho Dec 23 '14 at 19:06
  • I agree with rumtscho. Plus I would need several holes through out the cake where I'm adding filling. I'm not worried about covering the holes, I don't want the cake to have a random/lopsided filling. I don't want it to be like several filled donuts (to use your example) joined together where it's not consistent (some pieces are all filling and some are none). Think of the filling more as a really thick sauce. – Brooke Dec 23 '14 at 19:21

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