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First ‘practice’ wedding cake sample.
Posted: 24 January 2010 11:25 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Thank you everyone for all the help you have given to me, and provide on this sight.

Here is the pictures of the first ‘practice’ cake I made for my daughters upcoming wedding. She loved the lemon curd, but since she was not tasting this cake I thought I’d bake the 6” and 9” layers of the Golden Dream Wedding Cake exactly as given, for my own benefit.

It was the most delicious lemon cake I have baked, and I cannot wait to make one for my daughter to sample. I made the 6” and 9” layers, leaving the 6” unfrosted for my husband. I frosted the 9” and shared it with neighbors and the VA where I volunteer, keeping one piece for myself and savoring it over two days. The pictures look as if the center of the cakes sunk, but this was in reality, negligible, less then 1/4 inch. I know I need an instant read thermometer and this should help with my next cakes. I only had cake flour, and it did come out very tender, but moist and bursting with flavor. I split the syrup as the book instructs, and applied it so. The initial syrup goes on the cake top, and you leave it for 10 minutes and flip the cakes, putting the reserve on the ‘new’ top (again, this was all measured out evenly). What I applied initially did not really go anywhere except stay on the bottom, and the other application, after 24 hours, did absorb down the cake, but not all the way. This could be the altitude or dryness here, so next time I will adjust this a bit. It too was not a problem because the cake was moist and yummy!

The only ‘issue’ I would complain about are my lack of decorating skills!!

When I visit my daughter next month I will be bringing 6” cakes of: The Golden Dream Wedding Cake with lemon curd filling, a yellow butter cake with mousseline icing (with that excellent addition of Grand Marnier), and a raspberry filling. I haven’t decided which filling I will use yet, but I’ll read through the posts for ideas. And of course, the Chocolate Passion Cake from RHC’s as the groom wants his cake chocolate. I struggled between this and the Grand Marnier Cake, but I’m thinking of going all chocolate. If anyone has any other suggestions, please feel free to share them.

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Linda R.

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Posted: 24 January 2010 12:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Linda, (much easier to write than your pen-name!)  your cake looks extremely good and I think your decorating skills are excellent, much better than mine I can tell you!  I am most interested to see and hear about this cake as I intend to make it soon to celebrate a ‘special’ event for my husband and me.  I am not making the 3-tiers, just the 6” and 9” as you have done. I know someone else on the blog will also be interested.  I am always in awe of you bakers in the US who undertake these layered wedding cakes which need to be baked and decorated just before the wedding!  I have made several wedding and celebration cakes but I have used a fruit cake base which can be made and decorated weeks before the event, no last minute panic!  As mother of the bride I can’t imagine how you cope.  Good luck!

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Posted: 24 January 2010 02:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Jeannette,
Thank you, I will probably make a mousseline to decorate as this frosting became extremely soft in my hands and became soft very quickly.  Luckily my daughter is not picky about all this and would be happy if I did a plain sheet cake and left it in the pan.  I was going to ‘tier’ it, but my husband is very worried about the drive, about 25 miles to the reception, and then trying to unlayer it to cut.  I’m not sure how to protect it in the car, etc.  So we are looking at purchasing those stands they have now in different heights and using them.  http://www.weddingcakestand.net/cascading_cake_stands.html
I have more people coming to stay at our house the day before the wedding then I have beds and room,meaning I’m going to have a lot of people in the house,  so I am probably going to make the frosting ahead, freeze it and whip it up the day I decorate.
I was wondering if anyone on the sight has experience with freezing the cakes ahead, and which ones come out better when defrosted?  I wouldn’t decorate it until the day before the wedding.
If you make this cake, I can only say you will love it.  Other then the cake flour, I followed all the directions, and used the boyajian lemon oil in place of the lemon zest where Rose says you can.  That oil is my new favorite thing, right next to my new KD 8000!

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Posted: 24 January 2010 03:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Gorgeous job Linda!  Your daughter will be so impressed!  I noticed your question about freezing the cakes ahead—when I made my sister-in-law’s wedding cakes I assembled (torted/syruped/filled) the cakes ahead of time and well wrapped and placed the cakes in foil or zipper bags (there are huge ones out there if you can find them) and froze them.  I just did not have enough room to freeze all of the separate layers/etc.  You would definitely even be able to do a crumb coat with the Mouselline if you wanted to.  I used the Chocolate Passion Cake base (syruped with milk chocolate ganache—I also split the layers so that there were 4 in total) and filled with Raspberry Ganache.  I also used a White butter cake (can’t remember which one—-terrible of me!) that was torted into 4 layers, and filled with Raspberry Neo-Classic Buttercream.  I bought a large clear rubbermaid storage tote—I stacked my cake at home (for the first wedding cake I made, I had to travel about 1 hour in winter road conditions and it survived—I did “stake” that cake) and set the cake (already on display base—not footed) on the inside of the lid and then placed the rest of the tote overtop.  It helps if it’s clear as you can see the cake inside.  I avoid cardboard as I worry about little pieces of lint/particles marring the surface.  I think you’ve seen my post, but if not it’s at:
http://forheavenlycakessake.blogspot.com/2009/11/making-of-wedding-cake.html

I was wondering how the curd would freeze, but then I realzied that I’ve done this too.  I had some leftovers of the Lemon Luxury Cake from RHC and I could not eat it all so I froze it, and the curd was still very nice!  So I think you are in a good position to, at the very least, syrup and fill your cakes prior to freezing.  I did let them defrost in the fridge for at least a day or so—the 14” was still frozen in the centre, so for the 12” you may want to start 2 days ahead in the fridge.

Good Luck!  Can’t wait to see the results!

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Posted: 24 January 2010 04:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Thank you Sherrie.  I appreciate that answer.  It is my biggest fear of the time with all else going on.  I will definitely at least bake, fill and syrup the cakes a few days ahead, and then take them out to decorate the day before. 

I re-read your blog on this, and will read somemore later.  Your work is beautiful.  Do you make a chart for all size cakes to cut?  I am going to be cutting the cakes with my sisters so I need to have something for them to look at.

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Posted: 24 January 2010 10:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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jeannette - 24 January 2010 04:48 PM

Linda, (much easier to write than your pen-name!) 

I am always in awe of you bakers in the US who undertake these layered wedding cakes which need to be baked and decorated just before the wedding!

I second the motion - Linda is much easier smile.  As for the comment about baking wedding cake just before the wedding - who in the world would do such a thing (tee-hee).

All joking aside, I love your cake Linda!!!!  I can’t wait for an opportunity to give this recipe a try.  Your “Dotted Swiss” decoration is very elegant and quite lovely for a wedding!  Did you by any chance use the upside down flower nail trick for your 9” tiers?  If not, that would help ensure your cake layers are fully cooked in the center - I always use it for any tiers over 10” (no harm in using the technique with smaller tiers as well).

Jeannette - may I ask what the “special” event will be… an anniversary perhaps?

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Posted: 24 January 2010 11:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Hi Linda,
I did the chart on a 9” round…that way I could cut the appropriately sized circle into the 12” cake—I think I just wrote how many slices I needed for the 12” on the round and divided up accordingly.  But it was handy to have a visual—I planned to cut the 6” circle out of the round so I could use that to trace into the 9”—I didn’t want to drag pans along too—this was much more portable and disposable—it wasn’t an issue if it was ruined.  I still need to work on cutting those round circles into the larger cakes—they don’t end up very vertical—ha ha, but most people don’t notice.  I really should have taken some photos of the cake cutting—it’s always terribly messy!  I’d love to find out how it can be done neatly…Patrincia???
Sherrie

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Posted: 25 January 2010 06:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Linda, your practice cake is beautiful, from the perfectly shaped layers to the pretty dotted swiss piping.  And it sounds like it tasted great, too.  Your daughter is lucky to have such a dedicated and skilled mother to make her cake!

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Posted: 25 January 2010 01:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Jeanne shared a link with us that contains much useful info, both for brides and the person doing the cake. Check out the links on the home page, especially the table of contents near the bottom. Such a generous sharing of information from a woman named Earlene Moore, a professional baker of many, many years’ experience! Her cake serving chart is invaluable (# servings for all the different shapes and sizes), especially if your daughter wants dessert-sized portions.

The cutting instructions here, http://www.earlenescakes.com/cakeservinst.htm look a little daunting. But that’s just the way it’s written in great long paragraphs. Her method works beautifully. I gave instructions to our local yacht club chef based on this, on how to deal with a 6+9+12, and he was delighted! The bride in that case would have been livid to get the smaller pieces that Rose recommends, but then other wedding parties feel the exact opposite! Check with your daughter on her preferences. People sometimes don’t know they have preferences until you give them something else!  LOL

You’re off to a great start. The cake looks gorgeous!!! I’ve forgotten - when’s the wedding?

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Posted: 25 January 2010 02:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Linda,

You cake looks fabulous. The design is very elegant, which is perfect for a wedding. I haven’t tried this cake (but I’m dying to). I did however make the buttercream and I agree it is very soft. What I did to give it some “holding power” is added a small amount of italian meringue. It made the frosting lighter similar to the Mousseline, but I think it held up a little longer also. Of course you may have to add a little more lemon flavoring.  It held up quite well in a small heated living room full of people (it was Christmas dinner party and quite warm in the room). Of course the cake didn’t last that long, as it was the most popular flavor, but it didn’t weep at all.

Susan

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Posted: 25 January 2010 03:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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That’s a neat method Carol and thanks for mentioning the differences in portion sizes!  All the cakes I’ve made have been served with a midnight lunch (very popular here) and are not the main dessert and I find that Rose’s portions are adequate for that, especially with more people declining desserts.  Definitely know the crowd, so to speak as some may consider them very small.  I think Dede Wilson also advises using larger sizes.

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Posted: 26 January 2010 12:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Sherrie - 24 January 2010 07:45 PM

Gorgeous job Linda!  Your daughter will be so impressed!  I noticed your question about freezing the cakes ahead—when I made my sister-in-law’s wedding cakes I assembled (torted/syruped/filled) the cakes ahead of time and well wrapped and placed the cakes in foil or zipper bags (there are huge ones out there if you can find them) and froze them.  I just did not have enough room to freeze all of the separate layers/etc.  You would definitely even be able to do a crumb coat with the Mouselline if you wanted to.  I used the Chocolate Passion Cake base (syruped with milk chocolate ganache—I also split the layers so that there were 4 in total) and filled with Raspberry Ganache.  I also used a White butter cake (can’t remember which one—-terrible of me!) that was torted into 4 layers, and filled with Raspberry Neo-Classic Buttercream.  I bought a large clear rubbermaid storage tote—I stacked my cake at home (for the first wedding cake I made, I had to travel about 1 hour in winter road conditions and it survived—I did “stake” that cake) and set the cake (already on display base—not footed) on the inside of the lid and then placed the rest of the tote overtop.  It helps if it’s clear as you can see the cake inside.  I avoid cardboard as I worry about little pieces of lint/particles marring the surface.  I think you’ve seen my post, but if not it’s at:
http://forheavenlycakessake.blogspot.com/2009/11/making-of-wedding-cake.html

I was wondering how the curd would freeze, but then I realzied that I’ve done this too.  I had some leftovers of the Lemon Luxury Cake from RHC and I could not eat it all so I froze it, and the curd was still very nice!  So I think you are in a good position to, at the very least, syrup and fill your cakes prior to freezing.  I did let them defrost in the fridge for at least a day or so—the 14” was still frozen in the centre, so for the 12” you may want to start 2 days ahead in the fridge.

Good Luck!  Can’t wait to see the results!

Sherrie, I have read this a couple of times and, of course, had already read your blog. Are you saying that you freeze the torted (and crumb coated) the tier and then allow 1 or 2 days of thawing in the refrigerator?  I guess this minimizes drying out as opposed to crumb coating and putting in the fridge overnight or for a few hours (skipping the freezing).  Also, did you also torte the Choc. Passion Cake?  When I baked this it seemed sensitive to torting….but then I am such an amateur.  Do you still use the rubbermaid storage tote to transport your stacked cakes?  thank you for answering, I am learning so much just from reading/studying this forum.

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Posted: 26 January 2010 02:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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To make torting easier for the more fragile cakes, you can flash freeze it to make it easier to handle, then torte. I’ve not had a problem with this affecting the integrity of the final product.

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Posted: 27 January 2010 12:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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CRenee - 26 January 2010 04:38 PM

Are you saying that you freeze the torted (and crumb coated) the tier and then allow 1 or 2 days of thawing in the refrigerator?  I guess this minimizes drying out as opposed to crumb coating and putting in the fridge overnight or for a few hours (skipping the freezing).  Also, did you also torte the Choc. Passion Cake?  When I baked this it seemed sensitive to torting….  Do you still use the rubbermaid storage tote to transport your stacked cakes?  thank you for answering, I am learning so much just from reading/studying this forum.

Hi CRenee, What I ended up doing was filling and freezing the torted cakes—they weren’t crumb coated, but, of course, that would be perfectly fine to do provided the frosting can be frozen.  I think the filling ended up being smeared on the sides of the cake anyway so it sort of crumb coated anyway.  I was making the cakes well in advance so refrigerating wasn’t even an option—also, I didn’t think I could safely store 2 - 6, 9, 12, 14” cakes in my chest freezer without damaging them in someway.  So assembling ahead worked better than I thought it would.  I did torte the Chocolate passion to make it similar to the white cake (4 cake layers).  Also, I wanted to ensure even distribution of the syrup.  I’ve found that when I syrup 2” high cakes, it doesn’t always distribute evenly.  I found the Choc. Passion Cake to hold up pretty well…that open texture is deceiving as it has a fair bit of strength to it.  The rubbermaid container worked really well—it took me awhile to find one that is about the right size—take a tape measure with you to the store—I think the one I have is about 16” Wx 20"H x16” deep—you definitely want it to be tall enough—but the shape is an important consideration—some jut in and can encroach on the cake.  It helps to know the size of the cake base/board you will be using, also.  I even stored the completed cake in the container while it was in the fridge overnight.  I am by no means an expert, as I only have a handful of wedding cakes under my belt, but i was generally happy with how things worked out.

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Posted: 27 January 2010 08:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Thank you very much Sherrie. 

I will definitely be adding this response to my RoseBlogNotes file.

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Posted: 27 January 2010 11:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Thank you everyone for all the great suggestions.  I will be making the three (or four if I get time) 6” cakes for her final testing next week, and will definitely freeze them.  I’ll decorate them the day before I leave for her house.  This will be our final ‘practice’ cakes, but I know the people at the VA asked me if I’d be bringing any more cake as they loved the Golden Wedding Cake.  Now I have an excuse to try all the other cakes I want to bake!

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