Life's better with cake and a sprinkle of fairy dust
Part 1 proved quite a hit, so I humbly present… the sequel. It’s been proven the sequel is never as good, so this could be a bad move, but heck, I live dangerously.
Here are a few more tips for handling a cake emergency:
Firstly, the main reason wedding cakes and other tiered occasion cakes are not whisked out of thin air, beside time-consuming decorations such as intricate piping or gumpaste flowers, is simply this – that’s a lot of cake and a lot of cake takes a long time to make, bake, cool, torte, fill, ice and decorate.
In an emergency, it may be necessary to resign oneself to (horrors!) a dummy cake.
I’m not talking those everlasting foam and clay monstrosities in hotel banquets that get dusted off and recycled at every Chinese wedding banquet for an entire year (or more). Instead, consider a small edible tier on top of bigger, matching dummy tiers, for the cutting/picture-taking/feeding segment, then serve your guests slices of sheet cake that can be sliced and plated in the kitchen.
Salvage the key accent pieces from your original cake such as cake toppers, gumpaste figurines, gumpaste flowers… etc. These are usually made way in advance and if they are clean and intact, can save lots of time towards the making of a new cake.
When all else fails, throw all caution to the wind, get a refund from your bakery (if they were at fault) and then inform wedding guests that in lieu of a wedding cake, the couple will make a donation to their favourite charity. If I had it my way, I might even chuck protocol out and put a collection box in place of the wedding cake to urge guests to open their wallets for a good cause. Then again, I do live dangerously.
If forgoing cake to feed shelter dogs or save marine wildlife sounds like a sacrilegious idea, here are another 9 classic to quirky cake ideas that may just rise to the occasion in a cake emergency.
1) When hard pressed for time, go Monochrome. Different heights of cake, a simple black trim and a single gorgeous gumpaste flower makes a bold statement, like this one from MisoBakes.
2) An eye-catching brooch and pretty ribbons is a fast and easy way to jazz up a simply-iced tiered cake. (Cakes for Romantic Occasions by May Clee-Cadman)
3) Store-bought gumpaste flowers may be brought to life in a matter of seconds by air-brushing or dusting them with edible food color. Here’s a video on how to airbrush store-bought gumpaste flowers. This rose spray from a baking supplies store cost about SGD3.
4) If you’ve watched Cake Boss, you’d know airbrushed cakes are the way forward. It takes a skilled cake decorator less than 10 minutes to air-brush a 6″ tier. With a steady hand and a good eye for design, this beauty found on Pinterest may be whipped up in a jiffy.
5) It’s high time I featured one of our homegrown talents. One of my mates at baking school made this pretty wedding cake. Fondant butterflies stamped with a cutter, this design is both effective and efficient. It’s cheekily dubbed FIFTY SHADES OF BLUE. *chuckles*
6) If fondant butterflies are still too much work for you, try wafer butterflies. This one from Etsy is a real show-stopper. To buy wafer butterflies in Singapore, go to Bake King at Haig Road.
7) Instead of a video montage (yawn), print your most memorable photos on edible icing sheets and decorate your wedding cake. This is a great conversation-starter and gives your guests something to admire during cocktail hour, instead of shying away from the bulky wedding photo albums that usually draw only cursory glances.
8) I love wedding cakes that double up as dessert. This is not technically a cake but the tiers of a Pavlova wedding cake should still be stacked on individual cake boards and assembled just like a tiered wedding cake, with dowels for support, so that the higher tiers of fruit and whipped cream do not crush the bottom tiers of fragile meringue. The meringue bases take, on average, 2 hours to bake and dry, during which you’ll have ample time to prepare the whipped cream, fresh fruits and other adornments.
9) Last but not least, I was caught in a tight place between a Krispy Kreme wedding cake and this. But the ice-cream cart won me over with its old-school charm and cheeky defiance of everything that defines classic.
Give me scoops of traditional ice-cream wrapped in soft, sweet, pastel-hued bread slices, that I can eat standing up in my wedding finery any day.
Who needs cake now?