I overheard a really bad joke this week: ‘I went to a really emotional wedding the other day; even the cake was in tiers’. Oh dear… Anyway, it set me thinking – this joke exists because cakes at weddings have traditionally been tiered fruit cakes. But as regular readers will know, I have a passion for all things different, and so I set about researching some wedding cake alternatives. Some beautiful examples can be found on our Pinterest boards. Here’s what I found:
The ‘Cheese’ Cake. I have put ‘cheese’ in inverted commas because this is not to confused with a cheesecake dessert. Far from it, these are stacked wheels of cheese and can look even more stunning than their traditional counterparts. When we first began our little venture, we were contacted by a lovely lady who asked if we did ‘cheese carts’. Not knowing what they were, we quickly had a rummage online and discovered that it was one of our lovely carts stocked with cheese rather than sweets or cakes. So, yes, we can provide a cheese cart! Locally, we have the lovely Norfolk Deli who create these masterpieces and have a handy ‘Top Ten Tip’ guide to wedding cheese cakes. Be sure to check them out! Our favourite is the ‘Castle Rising’, but we might be biased as it is named after our neighbouring village. The wedding cheese cake can allow even more creativity too, when you choose the cheeses – think local, luxurious, flavoursome and balanced. Add some delicious grapes, chutneys, wines and breads and your guests have a ready-made cheese course or why not serve up the cake on a cheese board later in the day when your guests are beginning to feel peckish? And think of the photo opportunity – say ‘CHEESE’!
The Savoury Pie Cake. This alternative is not only quirky, but can be budget friendly too. Here in Norfolk, Bray’s Cottage Pork Pies create visually stunning and delectably delicious wedding pies. Choose a different flavour for each tier of the pie, and you can have as many or as few layers as you desire. Adorn with tomatoes, flowers, and herbs, and these showpieces look amazing. Best of all (we think) they will fit rather nicely on vintage cake stands and cake plates! A recent survey suggests that the pork pie wedding cake is one of the wedding ‘must haves’ of 2016, alongside our next find…
The Naked Wedding Cake. Tipped to be big in 2016, this is maybe the one part of your big day where it is socially acceptable to be bare! The naked wedding cake exposes all of the delicious flavours, colours and textures normally hidden under the icing. Easily decorated with flowers and fruits, this cake will suit rustic, country weddings. Of course, it goes without saying how stunning these would look on vintage china in a venue decorated with rustic vintage props from Vintage Partyware! Little A’s Cakery here in Norfolk have created some beautiful naked wedding cakes and a sit down with Amber, Little A’s baker, can bring out all of your ideas for flavours and design allowing you to achieve something that suits your own style and imagination. Whether you’re just not a fan of sweet fondant icing or love the rustic vibe of these bare confections, a naked cake is a great option that allows you to have a modern dessert with a more traditional look.
The Wedding Sweet Table. A side table or cart bedecked with cupcakes, scones, french fancies, biscuits and cookies, popcorn and more. Treat your guests to a veritable pick and mix of desserts. Here at Vintage Partyware, we have a number of carts in a variety of styles which can be decorated with vintage china, simple glassware, slate ware or glass jars. One idea we love is to have your family and friends bake desserts for your wedding and place them on the sweet table. Not only is this cost effective, but you can be creative with signage whilst involving your family in your big day – imagine the table brimming with desserts on vintage stands with your hand made Art Deco signage saying ‘Grandma’s Lemmon Drizzle Cake’ and ‘Aunt Liz’s Caramel Flapjack’. Fruit can also add a beautiful and colourful touch to your table, and won’t require much preparation. You can also fill glass buffet jars with some of your favourite assorted sweets. Easy and colourful!
The Doughnut Wedding Cake. Costing considerably less than a traditional cake, a doughnut cake can look stunning and please your guests – who doesn’t love a doughnut? You can be very creative in choosing how to display them – unevenly stack them on our vintage cake stands and glassware, pile them in a tower, or have a ‘doughnut station’ side table (see our selection of side table styles on our website) – and they’re guaranteed to be gobbled up! Now we’re not talking your average supermarket tray of doughnuts here… find an artisan like Doughnut Lab in Norwich who can create gourmet treats in creative flavours such as Rhubarb Bakewell, or S’mores (chocolate and marshmallow) or even Banana, Peanut Butter and Bacon (!). So you get to be personal with the flavours and you can incorporate your colour scheme into the decoration – what’s not to like?
The Macaron Tower Wedding Cake. These dainty, romantic, and delicious treats make a perfect wedding cake alternative. Their show-stopping colours look stunning on simple clear glass stands (see our range) and the more pastel shades lend themselves to a vintage theme (see our vintage cake stands). Be careful where you buy your macarons – stick with a brilliant confectioner such as Norfolk’s very own Macarons & More by Tim Kinnaird. Let your individuality loose, as macarons can be any colour and any flavour; a tower or of two tiers or ten; and decorated however you wish.
This is by no means exhaustive, but it shows that you don’t have to follow tradition. We also had a look at a wedding croquembouche, sweet pie wedding cakes, and of course our very own sweetie carts.
So, why not break the (cake) mould and serve your guests a distinctive treat that reflects your taste and style? After all you’ve lovingly customised every other aspect of your special day, so there’s no need to forgo your unique personality for tradition.