Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The eye of the beholder

I have to say that I’m not a big fan of wedding cakes. I haven’t had any that I’ve been super blown away by… but then again, I haven’t been to all that many weddings.

Now that I’m taking this specialty cakes class, I have a better idea of why I might not like wedding cakes. Here are a few reasons:

  • The decorations are super intricate and take multiple days to craft. This means that the actual cake was made… awhile ago.
  • The cakes need to stand up for a long time… sometimes in a hot climate. The ingredients are engineered to survive supernatural conditions with gums, preservatives, etc.
  • Most brides want their wedding cake to be white. Good buttercream, is made with butter, which is not actually white. If you’re eating a white cake, it’s either a) covered in a shortening-based frosting or b) covered in fondant
  • Fondant. Ew. Ew, ew, ew!

Proof that beautiful things can sometimes be disgusting.

1. Gum paste flowers. These are made with something called gum paste. The petals are glued together with raw egg whites. Every five minutes or so, you have to slather the dough with shortening or it will dry out. The final product is full of wires and inedible… but we put it on cakes anyway.


2. Fondant covered cake. Looks smooth, smells like those pre-packaged rice krispie treats. Tastes like a cavity.



3. MMM… looks tasty right? This isn’t even a real cake. It’s cardboard with marzipan decorations on it.


All of my practice this weekend did pay off today. Nothing I made looks too terrible… just wait until tomorrow when we make – you guessed it – wedding cakes!

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