Think outside of the box, or the cake, with these modern wedding cake alternatives
By Nora Heston Tarte
Wedding cakes date back as far as Ancient Rome. At the time, the tradition was to break bread over the bride’s head to bring good fortune to the couple. Since then, the ritual has evolved, and keeps on evolving. However, each ethnic custom seems to exist on the premise of a wedding cake acting as a token of good luck.
There’s something romantic about the notion of tradition. It’s like saying, “I do” on your wedding day, or descending the aisle to “The Wedding March.” While the trusty tiered cake is still a wedding staple, some couples are experimenting with other desserts, or at least upping the ante on the timeless creation.
Tiffany Villafuerte at Fizz Bakery says couples are adding details to make their cakes stand out. From mosaic details to icing that resembles lace, it’s all about taking the cake to the next level. For some, that means literally, as they add tiers to create taller cakes.
Looking to modernize your wedding day dessert? Forget the cake and pick one of these trendy alternatives.
Cheesecake is just one substitute for traditional wedding cakes. The stackable dessert is still technically a cake, but with a twist. Cheesecakes can be decorated to resemble traditional wedding cakes, or displayed on tiered cake stands for added oomph. There’s even room to meld the cheesecake and cupcake crazes by displaying mini cheesecakes on a tower. “Everything is kind of modernized. Some brides don’t want to do the traditional,” Villafuerte says.
Full-size pies are another option for the bride who wants to impress with non-traditional touches. Celebrities have brought this trend to the forefront. Lauren Conrad served up apple pie on her special day dubbing it her favorite dessert to bake and eat. An added bonus: they tend to be less costly than their more traditional wedding dessert rivals.
This may have been a one-time request for Lisa Hassett, owner of Frosted Flour Cakery, but a truffle cake is definitely unique. To achieve her client’s dream dessert, her crew candy-glued 150 or so truffles onto a fondant wedding cake.
Fruit is a fairly traditional option for cake filling, but as a cake replacement, it’s thinking outside of the box. Edible Arrangements may get more wedding work for their centerpieces or bridal party gifts, but they’ve done a wedding cake, too. To achieve the dream of a couple who detests cake, Heidi Sower of Edible Arrangements in Lodi says they placed dipped fruit on doilies and topped the tower with dove-shaped pineapple slices covered in white chocolate.
This wedding dessert is a rare bird in the States – you’re more likely to see it in France, – but that doesn’t mean it’s a myth. The dessert comes from an old tale. One where a pastry chef piled sweet rolls into a tower to create the first croquembouche after viewing a Medieval England tradition where guests stacked sweet rolls between a couple for them to kiss over. A successful kiss signaled good luck for the marriage. Modernly, the croquembouche acts as the top tier on a more traditional wedding cake.
Make it Mini:
Mini cheesecakes aren’t the only bite-sized desserts making their way into the wedding dessert market. Lisa, of Frosted Flour Cakery, notices a small amount of brides who want the traditional cutting cake and several different dessert options. “Some brides will pick six different items,” she says. Villafuerte sees the mini trend, too. With plenty of weddings under her belt she’s just about done it all – from mini pies to French macaroons and cake pops – she says it’s all about huge displays and lasting impressions these days.
Contact an Expert Treat Maker:
9210 Thornton Rd., Stockton
Something Sweet Bakery
440 C St., Galt
Frosted Flour Cakery
904 W. Lodi Ave., Lodi
224 N Ham Lane, Lodi