Choosing your wedding cake is one of the more interesting parts of wedding planning. However, there's a lot more to consider than just what flavour and shape you should have. The following paragraphs highlight some of these factors, so that your cake won't end up being the dark cloud that sullies your big day.
Selecting the cake
You will either schedule your own tasting or work around different bakers' tasting schedules to find your perfect flavour. Consider having your cake selection and tasting after the theme of your wedding is decided so that it can be incorporated in the style you choose. Give the baker swatches to ensure they get your colours right, and ensure your contract details exactly how the cake should appear. The baker will help you decide on size depending on the number of guests you have and other special considerations, such as if you want to give small cake gifts as thank-yous for those that helped with planning.
Lowering the expenditure
Naturally, more rare fillings, complex flavours and elaborate layouts and decorations will raise the price of the cake. You can get the best of both worlds by having a small display cake done, with similarly flavoured but plain sheet-cake to serve to the guests. Stick to simple designs to drive down the labour costs. For instance, calla-lily replicas are easier to mould than cascades of roses. You don't need to splurge on extravagant cake stands either; go with simply decorated baseboards and employ fine décor in line with your theme around it. Finally, you can have the caterer serve another sweet course as dessert which allows you to guiltlessly reduce the cake slices.
Considering the weather
Keep away from buttercream, whipped cream, meringue and other soft-frostings if you're having a summer wedding. Hot weather will melt these, making it difficult to serve. Fondant frosting is ideal for summer weddings, but the timing has to be perfect as these cakes shouldn't be refrigerated once iced. Therefore, you should give fondant a pass in cold-weather. Additionally, timing should be considered depending on the fillings you've chosen: fruit fillings don't keep as long as chocolate filling for instance.
Storing and transporting the cake
Book your baker as early as possible before the wedding to ensure you have the perfect timeline between cake-baking and decoration and the wedding. Soft frostings need some refrigerator time to help them to set for easier transportation. Nonetheless, avoid having a baker coming from too far away with your cake, particularly if your fillings, flavours or frosting choices are sensitive. For your leftover cake, wrap in airtight plastic film and store in a Zip-lock bag to keep in the moisture. Whole cakes will keep longer than cut cakes, so start with the latter. You can give slices to friends and family to avoid unnecessary spoilage.