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Choosing a Wedding Cake

With the increased popularity of television shows that profile amazing and sometimes quirky cake artists, the art of the wedding cake has risen to new heights. Gone are the days when the reception hall merely supplies you with the standard choice of cake for your party. These days, choosing the perfect cake can be nearly as exciting as choosing the wedding dress! Furthermore, modern couples are now traveling far beyond the traditional when choosing a wedding cake design, making the possibilities practically endless!

Style

There is no rule that says a wedding cake needs to be of the white, multi-tiered variety. Of course, that was the standard for many years, but times have changed.
Wedding experts recommend that you choose a style of wedding cake to match the type of wedding you’ve planned. Indeed, formal weddings – especially those held after 5 pm – should opt for the multi-tiered cake. However, there is no reason for the cake to be round. If you prefer square layers or even octagons, go for it. These can look just as formal as a round cake. Furthermore, while the icing is still most appropriate in white, the decorations can be in any number of colors. Black trim is especially lovely for a formal wedding. Pearl-like decorations or something that resembles lace is also appropriate for a formal cake.

If you’re wedding is less formal or quite informal, the sky’s the limit! Multi-tiered cakes are certainly fine, but you may want to include more colorful decoration or even something a little whimsical like stripes and polka dots or perhaps tilted layers.
Consider matching the wedding theme as well. A beach wedding might prompt a cake decorated with sea shells while an outdoor wedding might include a cake decorated with symbols of nature.
In addition to the regular wedding cake, some couples even include a groom’s cakes that reflects his personal interest, like a car-shaped confection for the car lover or a guitar-shaped cake for the rock-and-roll fanatic.

Flavor

Deciding on a wedding cake flavor can be tons of fun! After all, what could be better than going from bakery to bakery sampling cake?
Wedding cakes of old were usually made of traditional white or yellow cake with the occasional chocolate or marble cake appearing here and there. Today, anything goes, and popular cake flavors include carrot, tiramisu, Italian rum cake, spice cakes, or fruit-filled cakes.

If you’re going for a multi-tiered cake, most bakeries experienced in wedding cakes will be willing to provide you with a different flavor for each layer so that you can pick several favorites. Don’t be afraid to ask your baker for his/her recommendations. You can also match your cake flavor to an ethnic wedding theme. For example, the Asian wedding might include cake with a ginger flavoring.

Don’t see what you want or have an unusual flavor request? Ask your baker. Most are eager to accommodate the happy couple. However, also be prepared to take his advice. If he thinks your ideas just won’t work, take his word for it and try something else.

Choosing a Bakery

Obviously, what your cake looks and tastes like will depend on the skills of the bakery you choose. It’s best to start shopping around at least six months before the wedding so you have ample time to make an informed choice. Also, many popular bakeries fill their rosters quickly, especially during peak wedding season from April through October. All bakeries have their limits, especially those that take extreme pride in providing the perfect cake. If they already have 10 cakes on the schedule for your wedding date, chances are they may not accept any other jobs.

When shopping for a bakery, choose those that are experienced in making wedding cakes. That may not be the local baker. You may have to travel a little ways to find the right expert.

Asking for samples is a must. You’ll want to check not only for taste for also for moistness and other important qualities of a good cake. Also ask to see cakes that he/she has made for other weddings. The real thing is better than a picture so try to view cakes that are sitting there in the bakery, waiting to be delivered.

Tell the baker what you have in mind and ask to see photos of similar creations. Again, trust his judgment. If he thinks your vision of the perfect cake is impractical or even impossible, rely on his experience and allow him to offer other suggestions


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