Wedding cakes have become such an integral part of wedding scene that people would immediately look for it the moment they arrive at the reception hall. No wonder bridal couples insist on having a magnificent showpiece that blends in with their chosen wedding theme. Frankly, there’s nothing wrong with having a fancy cake, so long as it stays affordable. Here are 8 tips to help you get that cake and eat it!
Tip #1 Use Buttercream Frosting
Buttercream frosting is a tasty choice for couples who are holding their reception in cooler venues such as a hotel ballroom or a banquet hall. While it sounds messier than fondant, buttercream frosting is easier to work with. It can be dyed into different colours and apply onto your cake without having to be rolled and cut like those thick fondant sheets, but make sure to do homework first before requesting this substitute! Some professional bakers prefer working with fondant.
Tip #2 Substitute Fondant Flowers
The exquisitely fondant flowers are time-consuming to craft, so you shouldn’t be surprised to see an equally beautiful sum stamped at the foot of your bill. Choosing silk flowers makes any floral wedding cake much more affordable. It’s not advisable to use fresh edible flowers, because insecticide-free flowers are hard to find here and most of the time they aren’t cheap. Would you want to decorate a 3-tiered cake with organic flowers from Culina costing $10.50 for a box of 30?
Tip #3 Don’t Order Miniature Wedding Cakes
Miniature wedding cakes cost a lot per serving! It is much smarter to order wedding cupcakes or wedding cookies instead. Why not? These delights can be packaged as wedding favours, so you save even more overall. You won’t regret ordering a cupcake tower once you see the artfully arranging tiers of dainty cupcakes topped by a beautiful one-tier cake. Other fun alternatives include wedding donuts or a croquembouche. The latter is actually a traditional wedding staple from Italy.
Tip #4 Consider Ordering Your Cake from In-house Caterers
Venues that provide on-site catering may charge a small fee when couples want to bring in their own caterers. The wedding cake is no exception. Couples have to pay a compulsory cake cutting fee before they can get the staff to help them cut up and serve any wedding cake made external vendors. They are usually charged $1.50 to $3.00 per slice, which can easily total up to an extra $450.00 to $900.00 for the 250 portions served at a grand Chinese banquet. Other miscellaneous fees you need to consider are the transportation fee and the cake display fee.
Tip #5 Decorate the Cake Yourself
Ordering a plain wedding cake then add on extra flowers, ribbons or even swap the cake topper yourself before the reception can help you stretch a buck. You really get the best of both worlds – a tasty, well-frosted cake decorated the way you want. Come on, shopping for decorations isn’t that hard! You can visit places like Spotlight or Phoon Huat! More creative brides wanting a small one or two-tier cake can even order plain cakes from places like B-I-Y and have fun-filled cake decorating session in place of their hen night.
Tip #6 Supplement Your Portions with Sheet Cakes
Sheet cakes are rectangular single-tiered cakes covered in frosting. Most of the time there is minimal decorations. Not surprisingly, it is much cheaper paying for a sheet cake compared to adding more tiers to your wedding cake. You can even request to have your sheet cakes baked with the same batter and frosted with a similar frosting. Doing this keeps every portion tasting the same. This strategy is only work for bigger wedding receptions with over a hundred guests. A small one or two-tiered cake is usually more than enough for intimate weddings.
Tip #7 Don’t Go for Unusual Shapes
Most bakers have round cake tins, and in some cases, even square cake tins. Requesting an unusual shape – like hearts, ovals or teardrops – means that you pay extra as your baker has to order a special tin. Another great reason to choose a more traditional shape is that you can get more evenly sized slices while portioning every layer. An oddly shaped cake tier may give you slices of varying sizes depending on how you cut it.
Tip #8 Choose a Square Cake
When you have the option of choosing between a square cake and a round cake, pick the square cake, because you can get even more slices from a tier of the same height. Don’t worry about people saying that square cakes are harder to decorate and therefore more costly. That isn’t true at unless your baker has to specially order a square tin! Referring to the diagrams below, you can see that ordering a square cake gives your more servings than a round cake of the same height.
Wedding cakes are tricky, you have to consider both portion sizes and the cost. That is why you need to consider each of the tips carefully. They will keep your cake affordable whether you are ordering a simple two-tier cake for a 25 guest wedding or a large 4-tier cake for a 250 guest wedding!
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