Cake lover, Sara Fawcett

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I’ve been cooking since I was a child, often helping my mom in the kitchen with something as simple as stirring pasta in the pot.  I learned all of the basic kitchen and cooking skills from her, while my dad helped me master my knife skills and taught me all about the various kitchen tools and gadgets. Even though my parents were always cooking, neither of them really enjoyed baking. As I got older and wanted to assert my independence in the kitchen, I began baking as no one else in my family really had any interest.  Plus, I found it to be relaxing and a great creative release!  Working in a bakery seemed like a no-brainer for me when it came time to look for my first job.  To impress the family all the more, in particular during the holidays and such, I decided to enlist in baking classes at the CIA. I now rule the kitchen, with my sweets.

Having worked at a bakery for almost over a decade, I have seen how wedding cake trends have changed over the years.  Whereas a decade ago, wedding cakes all looked so similar, today we have all kinds of new and exciting options! From cupcakes to macarons, to one of Ashley’s favorites, Croquembouche. One of our bride and grooms, who are having a rustic wedding, have decided to serve many flavors of pie instead of wedding cake.  They even ordered individual pies for all the guests to bring one home as their favors!  Last summer we had a couple order ice cream sandwiches for the entire wedding from the restaurant they used to go early in their relationship.

Couples who are cutting into a wedding cake are kicking it up a notch!  The flavors of cakes are becoming more vibrant and creative as well!  I think this is a reflection of everyone becoming a "foodie" in their own right! Try chocolate cake with a caramel sea salt buttercream, roasted beet pepper and raspberry coulis, pistachio with hazelnut buttercream!  How about an almond vanilla cake with a raspberry mousse or Coconut with rum raisin buttercream? What about having four layers of cake, each with their own flavor?

James, my husband, isn’t really big on sweets, but he does like chocolate mousse. For our wedding last September he decided on a chocolate cake with chocolate mousse for one tier.  I didn’t really care what the cake was as I love any flavor.  My mother and brother chose the other tiers, going with a vanilla cake with strawberry and Bavarian cream filling and a vanilla and chocolate cake with raspberry and chocolate mousse.

The best of the best wedding cake makers are both the best bakers and the best designers. Sometimes it feels like a crime to eat something so breathtakingly beautiful.  The sugar flower skills of the best of the best, make the most simple of cakes look nowhere near simple.

Some of the best talents in the New York Tri-state area, for both taste and décor, are as follows: Ana Parzych Cakes, Erica O’Brien Cake Design, Ron Ben-Israel, Nine Cakes, Cake Suite, Mario’s Bakery in Oceanside, CMNY Cakes, Lulu Cake Boutique, La Tulip Desserts, Magnolia Bakery, Sugar Flower Cake Shop and of course Sylvia Weinstock Cakes, and many of the best catering companies have great bakers.

If you will be using real flowers on your cake, it is imperative you use the prettiest and freshest. This seems obvious enough but when you see photography on your special cake, this will hit home all the more. Pristine phalaenopsis orchids, big fluffy fresh peonies, perfect roses, ranunculus; all of these are great options.

With all these gorgeous design ideas, there’s no way that a couple can’t create their perfect wedding cake or dessert to match the theme or feel of their wedding.  The only hard part is deciding on a flavor!

Start cracking on your cake planning earlier than you think it is necessary. As Ashley will explain in a later blog to come, clients often wait until they feel rushed to plan their wedding cake, as well as, finalize their hair and make up artist. For now, get sampling - go eat some cake!