kel58 Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 1:53pm
post #1 of

I just do this aa hobby and haven't actually done a cake in a little while. I had someone facebook message me about her wedding in October. She wants a small 2 tier for "Show" and then cupcakes to feed the rest of her guests.

 

Here is my kicker. She wants a mixture of choclate cake (no problem) and her grandmothers carrot cake with her cream cheese icing recipe. I asked to take a look at both recipes. She sent me the icing recipe and I really don't think that it will be stable enough to ice a smooth cake and pipe details.

Here is is:

4oz cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
2 cups icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Beat well until smooth

 

I thinking of offeringg to do the cupcakes in the carrot cake and the larger cake in choclate to allow her the piping she wants. Will I even be able to pipe nice swirls on the cupcakes with this recipe? I normally use the decorators cream cheese recipe and have a have a hard time truly decorating anything fancy with that or getting it as smooth as I can with BC.

Thoughts? Should I use her recipes?

17 replies
BakingIrene Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 2:04pm
post #2 of

Sell her a dozen cupcakes made with her grandmothers recipes for carrot cake and this icing.  Explain that you need to make this trial order before you commit to the wedding order.  Just to make sure it is what she really wants, eh? 

 

There is nothing wrong with this icing recipe as written.  It will give you a soft icing that will pipe swirls well onto the cupcakes.  And a softer icing is also necessary to make a smooth coating on tiers.  This icing will then stiffen up well in the fridge for transport.

CakesByJen2 Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 2:54pm
post #3 of

I would not use that icing on a tiered cake.  It will be too soft for decorating and would make for a less stable cake, in my opinion.  It should do fine for plain cupcakes.  I use a cream cheese buttercream for tiered cakes that gives you some of the cream cheese taste but is  more stable & less temperature sensitive.  I just make a batch of really stiff buttercream and then beat in 8 oz of cream cheese (for a recipe using 2 lbs powdered sugar).

-K8memphis Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 4:17pm
post #4 of

here's my answer --

 

after i've explained that if ten bakers used the exact same recipe you could almost guarantee ten different results for whatever recipe the client wants me to use

 

i say, "sorry i don't do legends."

 

 

^^^cliff notes version^^^

remnant3333 Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 4:26pm
post #5 of

Making the cupcakes with the cream cheese icing is a very good idea!!! Many people who marry get the cupcakes made!!!

Cakepro Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 4:28pm
post #6 of

If this were my client, I would do it.

 

I don't know if her grandmother is in this world or the next, but either way, she wants that sentimentality in her wedding cake, which is really touching.  

 

As for the icing, I agree with Irene that the icing would do beautifully on cupcakes but personally, I would explain to the client that it is too soft to be used for the wedding cake.  You could fill the carrot cake layers with Granny's icing but the exterior would need to be a crusting cream cheese icing. 

 

Don't shoot your bride's dream down.  She may be giving you an absolutely amazing carrot cake recipe!  Just be sure to test-bake cupcakes and a cake with the recipe before committing to it.

Neophyte Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 4:48pm
post #7 of

Cream cheese can be doctored to withstand simple piping, without changing the taste most of us have come to know and love.  If it were me, I'd select one of the doctored recipes, make a small layer cake to share with the bride, and say nothing about the recipe change until after taste-testing, if at all.  IF she likes it, go for it.  The changes are minor, nothing that alters too much the basic recipe.  It would be very time consuming, but you could also use her recipe as it is to show her how it looks by comparison (maybe a half & half to save you time and dollars on cake).  I'm guessing she'll appreciate the fact the taste is not at all lost, and opt to make your life easier so her cake can be a huge success on her big day.

BakingIrene Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 4:59pm
post #8 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neophyte 

Cream cheese can be doctored to withstand simple piping, without changing the taste most of us have come to know and love.  If it were me, I'd select one of the doctored recipes, make a small layer cake to share with the bride, and say nothing about the recipe change until after taste-testing, if at all.  IF she likes it, go for it.  The changes are minor, nothing that alters too much the basic recipe.  It would be very time consuming, but you could also use her recipe as it is to show her how it looks by comparison (maybe a half & half to save you time and dollars on cake).  I'm guessing she'll appreciate the fact the taste is not at all lost, and opt to make your life easier so her cake can be a huge success on her big day.

I don't think you have to plan to bake a cake for free.  I think that when a customer wants a specific recipe used, you would bake it into small cakes or cupcakes and ask them to pay for it.

 

Then you use their icing recipe on half of the cake, and ONLY if it fails, make your own preference in the same flavour for the other half.

 

I got an extremely important lesson from using a customer's icing.  I went to her house to decorate cakes for a party because she was that strict about kosher. I made sure to take a new icing bag and new tips out of respect for her preferences. She showed me how an "impossible" recipe works, and I can't tell you how many times I have used that lesson.

Jeannem Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 5:25pm
post #9 of

1) I'm in agreement that you should try the recipe and see how it works out--how will you ever learn new skills without trial and error?

 

2) The icing recipe will have about the same consistency as IMBC or SMBC--keep it refrigerated like you would for those frostings--it might just work.

 

3) Yes make grandma a part of this cake somehow. My sister-in-laws grandma was an awesome baker. When my nephew got married grandma made the cake, and I decorated it--we live about 200 miles apart, but we made it work.  I even went to her house to learn how she made it, although I confess I could never master her wonderful recipe. When my niece got married this past summer, she requested grandma's cake (grandma has pass on) and I did my best to keep grandma alive.
 

Dani1081 Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 5:46pm

I think your original idea is the right way to go.  I would make the cupcakes from granny's recipe (her frosting recipe will pipe just fine)  and make the tiered cake chocolate, or vice versa.  Or if she insists that both flavors be used in the cake, I totally agree with Cakepro on this one - I would make the cake and FILL it with granny's recipe.  The exterior of the cake would all be iced with my standard crusting buttercream so that both of the tiers look the same.  Just make sure the bride agrees to that. 

-K8memphis Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 5:53pm

i charge by the hour for recipe testing

Narie Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 6:11pm

Grandma's recipe would be fine for a family cake but definitely not for a wedding cake.   Try this one instead http://www.earlenescakes.com/icings.htm

nhbaker Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 6:50pm

Yep, I agree with everyone --- that recipe would be fine for cupcakes & as a filling, but not as a cake icing.

 

I refuse to ice any cake with cream cheese icing it's just too unpredictable.

 

Here's what I tell my customers when they ask for cream cheese icing  "Cream cheese icing is predictably unpredictable. For that reason I only use it for cupcakes or as a filling, the outside of your cake will be iced in buttercream"     -- never had a problem with people argreeing to this.

AZCouture Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 7:17pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nhbaker 

Yep, I agree with everyone --- that recipe would be fine for cupcakes & as a filling, but not as a cake icing.

 

I refuse to ice any cake with cream cheese icing it's just too unpredictable.

 

Here's what I tell my customers when they ask for cream cheese icing  "Cream cheese icing is predictably unpredictable. For that reason I only use it for cupcakes or as a filling, the outside of your cake will be iced in buttercream"     -- never had a problem with people argreeing to this.

Yep.

yortma Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 8:08pm

Maybe a compromise would be agreeable.  Use the cream cheese frosting between the layers, and  your usual BC  or fondant on the outside.  

-K8memphis Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 8:19pm

here's another coupla angles

 

just as discussion fodder

 

why i don't do legends continued

 

  • g'ma mighta added a cap full of brandy to her stuff unbeknownst to an adoring family or some other item that isn't written down

 

  • if it's known that g'ma's treasured recipes are being used then whether they hit the mark or not will be a big deal at the wedding

 

if they match wow cool if not...

tabathaba Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 8:40pm

I actually just had a negative experience with this same request. A bride who was also a friend asked me to do a snickerdoodle cupcake recipe with cinnamon cream cheese frosting for her wedding cupcakes. She said she had tested the recipe 3 times and gotten it just perfect.

 

Day of the wedding I am scraping frosting off of two dozen of the cupcakes and making a new batch of frosting because it was not piping properly with the star tip that she wanted. She tested it for taste, but the consistancy was terrible. So I had to tweek it and play with it to get it just right.

 

Moral of the story.  1. Never do a new recipe without doing a test batch. 2. Always charge for the test batch.

-K8memphis Posted 13 Jan 2013 , 8:45pm

and me & Colette P.use one cup fat to 7 cups confectioner's sugar plus liquid for reg bc

 

or 3.5 cups sugar to 1/2 cup fat

 

this is 1/2 cup fat plus 4 oz of cream cheese to 2 cups confectioners sugar

 

that's very loose--not much sugar to hold that up--i don't know

 

while it's a very sweet idea to do this-- i couldn't pull it off--but the nostalgia factor is beautiful

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