On the Wivenhoe House list of best jobs in the world, number one is wedding cake creator, as long as you get to taste the product!
Amy Brown, from Cookie Delicious, is one of our preferred suppliers. She has been shortlisted in the UK Wedding Awards 2017 and named in the UK Top 50 wedding cake designers by GoHen.com. We love to see her fantastic creations when they arrive at Wivenhoe House on wedding days.
If you are planning on getting married in 2018 you will need to get your thinking cap on as the best cake makers will already be in high demand. We asked Amy for a few ideas to help you on your way.
She said: “Naked and semi-naked cakes are a huge hit at the moment. They work wonderfully well for rustic themed weddings, barn weddings and festival themed weddings. A naked cake is literally a baked cake with no exterior finish such as buttercream or sugarpaste.
“A semi-naked cake is similar but has been given a thin layer of buttercream leaving small areas of cake exposed. This style of cake is usually dressed with fresh flowers and/or seasonal berries including strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, redcurrants, cherries and figs.”
The most popular flavours at the moment sound mouth-watering, as Amy explains: “The cream of the cakes at the moment is Strawberry and Champagne, which is a posh twist on a traditional vanilla cake. It’s a soft Madagascan vanilla sponge laced with Champagne syrup, filled with Tiptree Strawberry with Champagne conserve and Champagne buttercream.
“Cherry Bakewell is a close second favourite. This is a delicious almond sponge laced with Amaretto soaked cherries, filled with French almond buttercream and Tiptree black cherry conserve.
“I’m not convinced we could ever make cakes healthier, if you substituted the key ingredients for healthier options I think you would compromise everything that makes them taste amazing! A slice of cake never hurt anyone…though a whole tier might!”
Hopefully these pointers will give couples a few ideas. Amy urges you to act quickly on your cake choice, once you have fixed your date and venue. She says: “I always recommend booking your wedding cake as soon as possible, especially if you are getting married during the summertime.
“Highly reputable cake makers will be booked at least a year in advance, with July and August dates often needing to be booked even further ahead.”
It used to be traditional for couples to save the top tier of their cake for their first baby’s christening, but that doesn’t often happen anymore, says Amy. “As this cake would have been a fruit cake soaked in alcohol and iced in royal icing, it was no problem to store this for months on end. You can only do this now if you used fruit cake and ate the tier within the use by date of the sugarpaste, which has a much shorter shelf life. Though you could always replace it and re-ice it when you are ready to use the fruit cake again.”
Amy works alone and only takes one, perhaps two, wedding cake orders for a week as each cake takes at least a week to create.
On Monday she will start on the sugerflowers, then on the Tuesday bake the cakes, each tier is baked as two cakes. Wednesdays are dedicated to filling all the cakes and using Belgian chocolate ganache to ganache the cakes.
On Thursdays it is time to ice the cakes with sugarpaste and then on Friday Amy stacks the tiers and decorates. On the wedding day itself Amy delivers the cake and photographs it in situ.
Amy loved her own wedding day and loves sharing the joy that all couples experience.
“My wedding day meant so much to me, I loved every minute of planning and of course the day itself was the best day of my life.
“I am so thankful I get to work with other couples planning the best day of their lives. I love the excitement, the different ideas, styles and colours that make each wedding unique. I have always been creative and have plenty of patience so my job is most definitely my passion.
“I love designing, decorating and delivering the cake, seeing the venue set up just as the couple had envisaged it, is so rewarding.”
Find out more about weddings at Wivenhoe House
How to contact Amy