Let Them Eat Cake…. and make it delicious too!!
One of the first acts a married couple do together is the ceremonial cutting of the cake. In some traditions they feed each other a piece to symbolise their commitment to provide for each other or if you were an ancient Roman, the chances are the cake was broken over the bride’s head (what a waste!).
Today, the cutting of the cake is one of the iconic photo opportunities of the special day and the distribution of the cake to guests is a time-honoured tradition of saying thank you for coming and inviting good luck upon the happy couple.
As a cake maker, I am in the very privileged position of playing a very small part in perhaps the most important day of a couple’s life. The cake will be both visible to all the guests and sampled by them and it with these two overriding factors that the making of the wedding cake is approached; it must look just how the couple want it to and taste delicious as well.
In ensuring the above two ideals come to fruition, there are a number of other factors that come into play and here are a few to consider to make sure your cake looks just how you want it and makes it through the day until glorious consumption:
Design If you want the cake to match a wedding theme, consider the theme first then the cake. It is easier to design a cake to suit a pre-determined theme than the other way around. If colour matching is important, providing a piece of fabric, a prop or a flower to the cake maker is often of more benefit than a photograph (yes, the camera does lie, especially in different light conditions).
Tiers, not tears! The number of cake tiers can be influenced by a number of factors:
- How it might look in the reception room or a window
- The numbers of guests it will need to feed and the size of the portions
- The design detail
- The cost
Whatever your preference, the number of tiers can easily be accommodated but do also consider what the cake is made of, how the tiers will be supported and the position of the cake on the day. As an example, a buttercream icing, red hot day and a large window do not mix very well if you want your cake to last until its cut and beyond. No one wants a cake resembling the Tower of Pisa or a slippery sludge of icing at the bottom and with a little planning and forethought these potential cake disasters can be avoided.
The days of a traditional fruit cake covered in royal icing are almost (but not quite) over and now the options available for that sumptuous wedding cake you always dreamed of are almost endless, limited only by your imagination.
Naked cakes, with filling between layers but no icing have been popular, particularly for that simple look, often decorated around the tiers by fresh fruit or flowers. A semi-naked cake is similar to the naked cake but is, as it would suggest, semi-iced. This can leave a more rustic or shabby chic look and is still very popular.
Half and half cakes have also been in vogue, where the bride chooses the décor for one half the cake (all the tiers) and the groom the other. The advent of fondant icing has opened up a whole world of options, from the covering of the cake, to making edible flowers, foliage and figures to ensure you get the cake you really want.
Whatever your choice, one little piece of advice to the happy couple. It’s your cake, so don’t forget to eat some yourself. If it all gets too busy on the day, be sure to ask your venue to keep some aside for that late-night snack!
- Naked, semi-naked or fully …….iced!