Thursday, January 30, 2014

Summer Wedding Cake Tasting

Last week I did a cake tasting with a sweet couple who I am SO excited to be making their wedding cake this August, Hannah and John. Their wedding is going to be an intimate affair and will take place in Oak Island, NC. I will be delivering the cake to their venue personally and so far we have a great start on their flavors and concept. I had fun coming up with the flavors for this one and they really challenged me with some of their new ideas. What we ended up with were four stellar combinations we all loved!

John is a self-proclaimed 'vanilla guy' so we started out with a vanilla bean cake filled with the same Italian buttercream that I frost the outside of a wedding cake with. A summer wedding calls for fresh berries somewhere on the list so I did a vanilla bean pound cake filled with sweetened whipped cream and fresh berries as well for them. Hannah's request was some combination of lemon and almond, which I re-created into a lemon pound cake with almond cream cheese filling. For their last taste, they let John's sugar loving mom choose a white chocolate cake filled with creamy milk chocolate ganache.

All of the cakes were a hit and we ended up going with a tier of each to make up their three tier wedding cake. As for design, Hannah knew she wanted to go for a traditional white cake with pearl beading border. With a plain white cake, we talked about a few different options they had to make it interesting but keep it white. I covered one of their taste cakes in fondant and did a textured design on another one so they could see both elements. We ended up adding a delicate filagree band on the middle tier for embellishment and we're going to use fresh flowers leftover from their centerpieces to accent. It should be a classy and elegant centerpiece to their reception which I would expect no less from these two. Stay tuned for more details as their cake comes together.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Red Ruffle Wedding Cake

Recently this white ruffle dummy cake that I made a while ago just started looking so white to me. When I made it originally I contemplated making the flowers different colors but decided the white on white design looked elegant as it was. But enough of that, it's cold outside now and the design needed a splash of warm color. I hand painted the edges red and took pictures in stages to show how the balance of red and white came through. Some of my favorites are from when I was only about halfway through, because the remaining white ruffles really pop. 

I used gel food coloring and a small straight edge paint brush. A design like this would definitely be much cleaner if I had colored the flowers from the get-go isntead and dipped the edges of the ruffles before adhering them to the cake.

The result is a pretty startling difference and completely transformed the feel of the design. It's a perfect example of how you can add color to a traditional wedding cake and end up with a very original - but still elegant - cake design.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dog Treat Wedding Favors

This week I've been recipe testing for a different kind of wedding favor - one that appeals to a dog loving couple's furry friends. We found a hit with some homemade banana peanut butter dog bones. They are suitable for most breeds of dogs and made with very few ingredients to be easy on their canine stomachs. Best of all they can be packaged up in any way and set out with a cute sign for your guests to take home to their pets at the end of the night.

I opted for a thinner, drier biscuit so they would be easier to break up for smaller dogs (like my Scotties) but the size and shape can be adjusted to fit the needs of any pup.

 Someone kept a very watchful eye over the baking process once the peanut butter made an appearance...

I'd say the overall feedback was pretty positive.
Check out some other options for wedding favors here: 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy New Year!

In 2013 I made one of the biggest (and in hindsight, best) decisions to move to New York and begin pastry school at the Culinary Instistute of America. Attending school slowed down the volume of actual cakes I created this year, but I was of course working hard to expand my skill set in school and it gave me the opportunity to focus more on this site and marketing myself in social media. I've been really happy with the results of using tools like Instagram and Pinterest to post pictures of my cakes that link back to my website and thought I"d share a list of superlatives for 2013:

Most Re-Pins on Pinterest: This Country Wedding Cake from July 2012

Most Likes on Pinterest: Lemon Lime Topper from Mark and Cassie's 2012 wedding

Most Popular Post: Valentine's Day Cake Truffles from this year

Most Likes on Instagram: White Ruffle Wedding Cake from Summer 2013.

Other popular contenders:

Also in 2013, I've doubled my posting, tripled my traffic and so far booked five weddings for 2014 and counting. I'm looking forward to finishing up school next year and being able to focus even more on my clients and expanding my business. Please keep re-posting, re-pinning and following my work in 2014!