Wedding Cakes

Things to Consider Before Selecting Your Cake

When looking at the wedding cake designer's portfolio, look not only at a picture of the entire cake, but of a plated slice as well.

Be sure to sample, sample, sample. If a vendor does not offer samples, keep looking.

If the wedding cake will be prepared and then frozen, ask to sample a cake which has been thawed so that you will know exactly what you are getting.

If you are wanting to use fresh fruit or fresh flowers on your cake, be sure that the cake designer you are interviewing has had experience with using these items. Both can be tricky for someone who has never worked with them. Fruit can present the issues of freshness, discoloration and even weight, and there are health issues involved in using fresh flowers.

If your wedding will be outdoors in warm weather, consult with cake designer as to what ingredients will best withstand the heat.

If fresh fruit will be added, be sure it is added as close to the presentation time as possible.

Discuss with the site coordinator or caterer the presentation of your cake. Things to decide include:1. Where it will be displayed2. On what surface it will be displayed3. Whether or not there will be a tablecloth and what color it will be4. Any other table decorations5. Find out if your parents or parents in law have the knife they used to cut their cake, and if you can borrow it. That would give special meaning to the cake cutting ceremony.,6. You could do the same with the glasses the bride and groom will use to toast each other.

These terms can be helpful in your discussions with the cake designer:

FONDANT This mixture can actually be wrapped around a cake for a porcelain finish or molded into decorations such as fruits, flowers, bows, and other fancy designs. This mixture is made of sugar, water and cream of tartar.

BUTTERCREAM This type of frosting is made from a mix of softened butter, milk or cream, confectioners' sugar, and egg yolks. It is very versatile and can be colored and flavored for different effects. It can also be used to trim and decorate the cake, for example, with flowers and beaded edgings. One drawback to buttercream it that it does not hold up well in heat. Therefore, it is not recommended for outdoor weddings in the summer.

MARZIPAN This mixture of almond paste, sugar, and egg whites can be tinted with food coloring and molded to make cake trimmings and decorations such as fruits, flowers, bows, and other designs.

ROYAL ICING This icing hardens when dry to make sturdy decorations for cakes. It is made of sugar and egg whites and can be tinted any color.

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