Over the years in my career as a wedding cake designer, I have heard so many cake misconceptions. These misconceptions can potentially get in the way between you and your dream wedding cake design.
Today I’m sharing with you the 5 most common wedding cake myths, the reasoning behind them, and why they are, in fact, not necessarily true at all.
1. Fondant icing is not the enemy
I get a lot of customers telling me that they love the look of fondant covered cakes, but unfortunately they hate the taste of it. They find the thought of having a thick layer of icing extremely off-putting.
Personally, I remember being a child at a wedding, trying to peel off a big chunk of fondant and marzipan to reveal the tasty cake underneath.
This might have been the case 10 years ago (marzipan is rarely used these days unless it’s fruitcake), but nowadays a skilled cake designer is able to roll out the icing really thinly that you wouldn’t even notice it in some cases. Even better, I personally use a beautiful Swiss brand of fondant that actually tastes nice and not overly sweet.
Remember, don’t judge by supermarket cakes. They are mass produced, which means they simply don’t have the time to carefully handle thin fondant and make it look neat, so they use a thick layer instead to cover imperfections.
Fondant icing opens up more design options, such as clean stencilling, hand painted messages, marble cakes,…etc.
Fondant also keeps the cake fresher for longer, as it completely coats it and seals in the moisture. I would recommend you keep an open mind when it comes to choosing fondant for your wedding cake.
Some designs can only be achieved in fondant, like this rose gold wedding cake we set up at The House Shuttleworth last year.
3. Wedding cakes do not taste dry
That’s like saying I don’t eat pasta because it’s overcooked, missing out on a world of Al-Dente goodness!
Sadly, there is a misconception that because wedding cakes are made a few days in advance, allowing time for it to be decorated, it means that the cake dries out in the process. Logical, but in most cases not true.
The coating we cover the cakes in (whether it’s buttercream or chocolate ganache) seals in the moisture, and acts like tight wrap. If the cake is then covered in fondant, that seals it in even more, and keeps it from going dry.
If you have been to a wedding where the cake tasted dry, I’m very sorry to hear it. That is probably an unfortunate incident where the baker might have not followed common procedure, the recipe they used wasn’t great, or the cake design might have been without any outside icing (naked or semi-naked design) and was set-up at the venue too early. Make sure you choose a cake designer whose reviews say that the cake tasted delicious, then you know you’re in safe hands.
4. You don’t have to have Fruitcake in all tiers
Or at all! To be fair, our fruitcake recipe is a modern lighter version that most couples really enjoy, but unlike myths say, you don’t really have to have fruitcake for your wedding cake at all!
The tradition of having fruitcake at a wedding is said to have been brought to Britain by Julius Caesar in 54 BC, where the practice of “crowning the bride” was introduced. Crowning is basically crumbling fruit and nut rich cakes on top of the bride’s head to appease the gods and encourage fertility. Yes, you read that right. Can you imagine your hair stylist’s reaction?
Thankfully, this is not the case anymore, a variety of delicious flavours are now offered to couples and their guests to enjoy. There is no bad luck in breaking free from that particular tradition.
An experienced wedding cake designer will structure the cake properly so it carries the weight and stays stable.
5. “Nobody eats the cake anyway!” is the biggest myth of all
I won’t answer this one myself, as you may think I’m biased. I will refer you to some of our previous couples feedback, so you could see that in most cases that is simply not true:
“No one could believe the decoration was edible and every layer was exceptional in flavour. We significantly over-catered and still wasn’t anything left!” Lisa-Marie Pritty
“Compliments from guests about the design, which complimented my bridal bouquet excellently to the delicious cake inside. None was left over! “ A & N
“The final product was beautiful and tasted amazing, we hardly had any left of our 4 tier cake as guests loved it so much.” Nicola & James
This point strongly builds up on the previous point about wedding cakes being allegedly dry, if they were all dry they wouldn’t have been eaten to the last crumb, would they?
If you’re worried about waste (I personally hate waste), then my advice will always be to count the servings based on finger slices (usually 1”x1”x5”), and cater for all your guests. This was if some people choose not to have cake (can’t think of many people who wouldn’t), then the ones who have more than one slice will make up for it. This is usually more common when you choose to have different flavours, where guests are tempted to try more than one.
I hope this post has helped open a variety of options for you that you did not think were possible. I would love to hear about your experience with wedding cakes in general, leave me a comment and join in the conversation. A cake discussion is a happy discussion!
And if you’re planning your wedding in Cambs, Herts, London, Beds (or anywhere across the world really), then get in touch with us to discuss your wedding cake, or for help and advice.
Join our Newsletter to get useful articles like this one straight to your email, we only send them every once in a while.