Thursday, November 19, 2009

Branching Out

So, up until November, I pretty much only did birthday cakes and cookies for family. But friend Joy's sister-in-law, Amy, asked me to make her wedding and groom's cake. Nervous about saying yes, I knew that if I really wanted to start branching out in my baking, this was a good way to start. So, I committed.

The groom, Bill, wanted the UNC football field. (He actually wanted the whole stadium but I managed to talk him into just the field.) I, also, talked him into to ordering a peanut butter pound cake with chocolate butter cream - a cake I had been dying to try. I always love using my chocolate butter cream because it smells so divine and of course, peanut butter and chocolate were made to go together. I did my research on the UNC football field, but was more worried about getting the color right. If you're into collegiate sports, you know what color Carolina Blue is. The field wasn't as complicated as I thought it was going to be and the biggest stress relief was when I drew out the NC in the middle of the field. The words in the end zone were slightly problematic, but I wrote them out on paper first, cut them out, then used it as a guideline. I did the words upside down so I wouldn't have to be leaning over the entire cake. It was interesting, but for the most part successful. The best part was how much Bill, the groom, enjoyed it.

The bride's cake - The layers came together pretty good. Cream cheese pound cake has become pretty standard for me. I didn't break any layers, which is always nice. She wanted cherry and blueberry fillings, so I tried whipping some sort of filling up without looking at a recipe - not the brightest idea I've ever had. It didn't work out. So, I cheated. I used pie filling. Not my first choice, but it made my life simpler. Made a ton of butter cream icing. Used 18 sticks of butter and 9 lbs. of confectioners sugar. I was pretty stressed about stacking the cake. But fortunately, I had great people around me while working that made it feel like I was hanging out and just so happened to be stacking up my first 4 tiered cake. My friend Jessica was there to bring me coffee and help me with the flowers, so thanks a bunch, Jess!

It's not perfect, but overall, I consider my first wedding cake a success. I was very proud of myself and the bride and her family loved it. My favorite compliment was one said by the bride's sister, Mary. She said that the cake looked like Amy and Bill. That was definitely a goal of mine and was pleased to hear that it was reached. So, thanks to Amy and Bill in allowing me to participate in the celebration of your new life together!

(PS. You can click on the photos to make them bigger.)

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