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Not a pro...is it hard to make wedding cakes?

post #1 of 118
Thread Starter 
Im getting married on a budget next june, I was considering making my own cake. I love doing b-day cakes and I would like to become more exprienced. Nothing fancy just plain staked teirs. Maybe some real flowers on it. I would love some tips or advice. Or a great web site to help me. Thanks icon_biggrin.gif
post #2 of 118
Congrats on your wedding that's coming up! As the bride, you're going to be a little stressed and busy that day, so if you are going to do your own cake, be sure to set aside time for it.

Here's the wiltonw website with a number of cake assembly hints and ideas: http://www.wilton.com/cakes/tiered-cakes/
post #3 of 118
Hi Ashley,

You've found a very helpful cake site right here. There are so many great bakers/decorators here that are willing to answer any questions that you may have and offer their advice/tips.

When considering baking your Wedding cake, think of it as 3 or 4 individual all occasion cakes that just happen to be stacked. That was the advice one of my instructors gave me when I was stressing about my first Wedding cake order. It made me look at the project in a whole new light and I was no longer intimidated by the prospect of making such a difficult cake.

Good luck and Congratulations on your upcoming marriage, it's such an exciting time for you icon_smile.gif

Deb
post #4 of 118

Hi and Welcome to CC, Ashleymamaof4. icon_smile.gif

Decoding CC acronyms:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-2926-.html

You can bake and freeze the layers beforehand to make the assembly and decorating process less stressful.

Most frostings can also be made in advance. (American b/c's don't usually require refrigeration while stored.)

Fill and crumb coat or frost cake layers. Allow to settle. Spend next day assembling tiers and decorating.

How to make and decorate with MMF:

http://cakecentral.com/article47-How-to-Make-and-Decorate-with-Marshmallow-Fondant-MMF.html

MMF tips:

http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-101181-.html

How to cover your cake in fondant:

http://cakecentral.com/article22-How-To-Cover-Your-Cake-in-Fondant.html

http://www.pastrywiz.com/wedding/wedding19.htm

Fondant useage charts:

http://whatscookingamerica.net/PegW/CoveringFondantQA.htm
(Scroll down.)

 

GlobalSugarArt:

 

http://www.globalsugarart.com/?id=24

Satin Ice:

http://www.satinfinefoods.com/product.htm

 

Wilton:

 

http://www.wilton.com/decorating/fondant/fondant-coverage-chart.cfm

 

Earlene's Cakes:

 

http://www.earlenescakes.com/Fondantchart.html

 

Most complete chart:

http://tinyurl.com/2dslk5
(Page 6.)

How much sleeved pastry filling to use by cake size:

http://countrykitchensa.com/idea/instructions-cake/filling-cakes-using-pastry-fillings/53/168/494/http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-562527.html

Sleeved pastry fillings:

 

http://www.globalsugarart.com/search.php?q=pastry+fillings#/?filter.brand=Henry%20%26%20Henry&page=1

http://www.countrykitchensa.com/catalog/mini.aspx?T=1&ShopId=38&CatId=532&SubCatId=798

http://www.thebakerskitchen.net/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWCATS&Category=86

How to stack/tier cakes:

http://www.wilton.com/cakes/tiered-cakes/

 

More on SPS:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-561846-.html
(See Leahs post.)

SPS sticky by Leahs:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-603925.html

(Illustrated) How to cut level dowels by indydebi:

http://www.cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-434013-.html

Wilton's cake making help links:
(Includes cake preparation charts which give batter requirements by pan size, as well as servings charts.)

http://www.wilton.com/cakes/making-cakes/

Wilton's cake decorating help links:

http://www.wilton.com/cakes/decorating-cakes/

How to prevent bulging layers:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-633571-.html

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-33188-.html

Faux Fondant (Viva paper towel method):

http://cakecentral.com/article10-How-To-Create-Faux-Fondant-The-Paper-Towel-Method----Viva.html

Melvira (foam roller method):

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-47753-.html

How to professionally ice a cake:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-82411-.html

Everything you ever wanted to know about ganache:
(Includes master as well as other recipes, how-to-glaze, stack, smooth and more.)

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-497433-.html

All about chocolate:

 

http://www.bhg.com/recipes/desserts/chocolate/chocolate-types-selection--storage/

 

http://www.facts-about-chocolate.com/types-of-chocolate/

 

http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/tools-and-techniques/questions-about-cooking-with-chocolate3.htm

Recommend using the bake-even strips and flower nails/heating cores in cakes 10" diameter or more, and 3" deep pans.

Nail/Heating Core Threads:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-46493-.html

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-41351-.html

Make Your Own Cake/Pan Release:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-54367-.html

The WASC cake is a doctored cake mix recipe that is very moist and tasty and very reliable.

Heres' the expanded flavors recipe:

http://tinyurl.com/2cu8s4
(Using DH white cake mixes, a full recipe makes a tad over 14 cups of batter.)

Original WASC cake recipe by kakeladi:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-584319-.html

Chocolate WASC variations:

http://cakecentral.com/a/amazing-chocolate-wasc-cake

 

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-587744-.html

My favorite b/c is cakemanOH's hi-ratio Brite White recipe:
(Lost my source for icing base, but puzzlegut makes it without all the time.)

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/2375/brite-white-buttercream-icing

Sugarshack's hi-ratio icing recipe and Tips:

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/5163/sugarshacks-icing-and-tips

Everything you ever wanted to know about hi-ratio shortening:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-219731-.html

Popular Crisco based b/c recipes:

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/7378/cakepros-buttercream-with-trans-fat-free-crisco
(Cakepro's recipe.)

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/indydebis-crisco-based-buttercream-icing/
(Indydebi's recipe.)

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/7215/foolproof-crusting-buttercream
(Luby's recipe.)

Everything you ever wanted to know about meringue b/c's:

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopicp-6011626-.html

Fondant and MMF recipes:

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=Recipes&sort=recipename&sort_dir=ASC&op=search&chname=X&chingredients=X&searchtext=fondant&cat_id=-1&x=14&y=11

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=Recipes&sort=recipename&sort_dir=ASC&op=search&chname=X&chingredients=X&searchtext=marshmallow&cat_id=60&x=9&y=18

Illustrated how-to on cutting neat slices of tiered cake:
(Indydebi's method is so much better and easier than Wilton's.)

http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/search/label/cake%20comb

HTH

Edited to correct cut and paste mistake. icon_redface.gif
Edited to correct broken links, again.


Edited by JanH - 1/14/13 at 4:07pm
post #5 of 118
And that's why I call Jan our librarian! thumbs_up.gif

This should be a sticky thread ... everything you ever needed to know about making a cake in one location!

You go, girl!!
post #6 of 118
Holy Mary Mother of God, Jan!!!! icon_surprised.gif

Thanks for the info - I saved this thread....
post #7 of 118
Why thank you so much, indydebi and CakeDiva73. icon_biggrin.gif

But I couldn't put together these help threads without other CC members invaluable input. judge.gif

And as usual, I forgot something..... icon_rolleyes.gif

Brite White, Angel White and Snow White are all icing bases.

Your local cake decorating shop may carry one of these or another brand.

Angel White can be ordered online by googling "Angel White icing base".

Snow White can be ordered in bulk by contacting National Flavors. (They also sell flavoring extracts, etc. at wholesale prices to the public.
Link to website: www.nationalflavors.com

HTH
post #8 of 118
I think I'll have to check out some of these...

Your amazing Jan!
If it is to be, it's up to me!
Pura Vida!
Reply
If it is to be, it's up to me!
Pura Vida!
Reply
post #9 of 118
And if you think it will take you 5 hrs to ice your cakes, plan for 10. My sister did my 3 tier wedding cake in fondant and was at it for 8 hrs. I did my sister in law's wedding cake (5 tiers) in buttercream and I spent 10 hrs on it. And that doesn't include my mother putting all the silver balls on for me! If you can find a friend to help, you'll at least have someone to lean on when you think the decorating will never end!!! Good luck and congratulations! icon_smile.gif
post #10 of 118
And factor all those interruptions from family and friends who assure you they only need you "just for a minute". icon_biggrin.gif
post #11 of 118
I did my own wedding cake. I was trying to get the cake done when everyone arrived to set up the hall, and I didn't get to the hall because I was trying to get the cake done (I went when I was done, but it was after everyone else had left and I just set the tables which my friends had all set up). I was just thinking about the cake, but looking back, I see I should have stopped and gone to the hall to help, but also in retrospect I don't see when I would have made up the time unless I had ended up staying up all night doing the cake. So my advice is if you are doing your own, keep the design simple; don't try to be perfect because that can add HOURS to your decorating; and if you aren't sure about stacking, rent/buy the type of stand where each tier is on it's own stand at different levels. That's what I did. (Or do at least one practice cake that you stack, because don't you always find the first time you try something you realize so many things you should have done differently? -- Maybe your mom or someone gets a really fancy birthday cake this year).
post #12 of 118
My recommendations, as someone who used to "cake" 25 years ago, and hasn't made a wedding cake since then (but is making one for a family member next week):

1. Practice with a few times with double or triple-stacked tiers, to build your confidence and your skills. This is also a great chance to try out different cake, filling, and icing flavors and recipes. I had lots of fun this summer, trying out about six different types of cake and six different types of icing, figuring out which one the bride and groom, collectively, liked best. That was the most difficult part---He *hates* any frosting with powdered sugar, and she thinks the meringue buttercreams taste "too buttery."

2. Maybe sign up for a Wilton class through Michael's or a local teacher. They're fairly inexpensive, but you can spend lots of money in tips and bags and tools. Check ebay for these and for pans, too. Or, if you can afford it, purchase SugarShack's DVDs for Buttercream and for Stacking.

3. Invest in good cake pans (Magic Line or Fat Daddio's). They make a huge difference! I had sold all my pans from years ago, but I noticed a huge difference once I invested in some Magic Line pans, rather than using my cheapie W-store ones. Much easier to get straight sides and top, and to smooth icing.

4. Use SPS for stacking. (Just search for it here. It's a stacking system that's nearly goof-proof.) The last thing you need just before you walk down the aisle is massive cake disaster.

5. Echoing IndyDebi, definitely choose a simple design. I'm doing a three-tier stacked round, with flowers on top and ribbons around the bottom of each tier. Don't need to worry about piping, or fondant, or My biggest issue will be transport.

Good luck and keep reading here. You'll learn lots just lurking!
post #13 of 118
OK, after reading my last post, I realized that you might want to tally up how much the supplies and preparations/practice will cost you. It might be cheaper just to go with a baker.

Probably, the bigger the cake, the more you'd save. If you were just having 30-50 people, I'd guess it's more cost effective to hire out.

However, I think you definitely could do it, with some practice and planning. Don't let me discourage you.
post #14 of 118
And since there hasn't been enough info/advice here (hehehe), may I recommend a spray with flour in it for your pans. I used Baker's Joy and it was unbelievable. I thought to myself, ohhhhh that's how a cake is supposed to come out of a pan. Some people swear by cake release or making their own homemade concoction, you'll find the one you like best. I just think the spray is the easiest.
post #15 of 118
Hi! I apologize if I duplicate anyone's response... Wilton has a book on doing tiered cakes. The cover says " Wilton shows you how to create dramatic Tier Cakes" (ISBN 0-912696-34-6). I purchased it about 8 years ago and it was only $9.00. It's from the 80's so the decorations might be a bit "dated", BUT the principles of assembly have not changed. It has sample projects and walks you step by step through the process. It was a great reference when I first started doing cakes years ago. And I'll still refer to it from time to time.

Best wishes in planning your wedding! Have fun!!! icon_smile.gif
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