i have a cake due for a party on friday night as well as 60 mini cupcakes to be decorated as the favors. How far in advance can i make my cake and it still taste fresh, i dont want to be running around like a chicken with my head cut off on friday morning. (i am also a guest at the party so i have to get myself ready too)
Personally I have not made a cake that sat around any longer than 1 day completed. I have made a cake and iced it one day, decorated it the next day, and delivered it the next. The icing will lock in the moisture pretty much. I have had CC members talk about putting the cake in the fridge to make it last longer (iced) but I have never done that myself. Maybe someone else will give you some help with that method. Good luck.
oops excuse the spelling error in my heading...as you can see i am already a nervous wreck
For a Friday delivery, the cake should be completed the night before. 60 mini cupcakes should literally take a couple of hours, even if you don't have multiple pans, and only one oven. For cupcakes, I usually box and wrap in a layer of plastic wrap to lock out air. I find cupcakes dry out a bit faster. But maybe that's just me.
ALL of the "old time cake ladies" I know always swore that cake tastes best on the third day. (bake day 1, decorate day 2, eat day 3)
I wouldn't fret about it. I work a full time job and do my cake prepping at night when I get home. If that's your situation too - here's how I'd do it:
Tonight - bake the cake(s) and make all your icing (if using BC). Wrap the cakes in siran wrap once cooled - I let them sit on the counter. PUt the icing in the fridge. The next day I take the icing out about 2 hours before I need it and then ice the cake. If it's a big decoration project - I leave that for the next day. It it's pretty simple I just do that the same night I ice the cake. The cake will be nice and moist once you "seal" it with the icing so don't worry about that. I wouldn't let it set any longer than 2 full days before presenting it at the party though. Time yourself accordingly. Agian, just my opinion.
Thank you for the advice, I did it the way you all said and the cake was a hit at the party, I was very proud. It was my first multi-layered cake and it had to be transported over an hour away. I have upload pictures, let me know how I did.
i make cakes for coworkers all the time. because i work full time during the day, i only have evenings to work on cakes. i found that trying to bake and decorate all in one evening is too stressful, and frankly, the decorations dont turn out as well because everything is soft.
i found that for me, the best method is to bake one afternoon/evening, mix up the icing while the cakes are coolign. then fill and stack them, put a crumb coat on to seal in moisture. then put in the refrigerator overnight.
the crumbcoat crusts over, and the next day it makes putting on the final coat so much quicker and easier. i can usually have it decorated in no time, depending upon how elaborate the design is. if i use flowers, i always make them ahead of time, so the actual decorating day only consists of the final coating, border, then assembling the decoration.
refrigerating overnight also gives the cake a chance to settle, so if there is going to be any bulging at the seam, it can be smoothed the next day before putting on the final coating.
the cake is actually eaten on the 3rd day, which is fine, its usually moist.
however, the humidity level really makes a difference. i live in southern calif where the humidity is usually at 50%, but in the summer can get up to 75% at times. when humidity is high, the cakes stay moist inside longer, but it can wreak havoc with working with buttercream and fondant.
i went to utah recently to visit my brother. i made a cake for him. their humidity levels were in the 10% range. i had made the cake before leaving here, froze it, then transported it wrapped in saran wrap in an ice chest for 10 hours. the next morning i frosted it, and we ate it that evening. it was much drier inside than a cake would have been here in calif, but still acceptable. one more day would have been too late for this cake.