“Why settle for one cake when you can have 3, 10, or even 20? The more the merrier!” says Courtney Rich of Cake by Courtney. Case in point: This mouthwatering trio of fun, unexpected wedding cakes. Her beloved Milk Bar Apple Pie Cake—inspired by Christina Tosi, “the genius baker behind the brand Milk Bar; she’s taken the art of cake making to the next level,” says Rich—features layers of brown butter and apple cider cake, liquid cheesecake, pie crumbs, apple pie filling, and a pie-crumb topping. Her Ultimate S’mores Cake, one of Rich’s most popular confections, offers up layers of dark chocolate cake and toasted marshmallow filling with a graham cracker crust and whipped chocolate frosting. Last but not least, her caramel and chocolate–drizzled, popcorn-topped Chocolate Salted Caramel Cake is always a crowd-pleaser.
TWICE AS NICE
Torn between traditional vanilla or chocolate cake? Why choose one when you can have the best of both worlds, like this delicious duo by Cassidy Budge of Flour & Flourish. Her white coconut cake features passion fruit filling and vanilla Swiss meringue buttercream and is decorated with cascading flakes of edible silver leaf. Her chocolate banana cake is layered with rich hazelnut filling and is frosted with extra-dark chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream. “I personally love chocolate—my own wedding cake was chocolate,” says Budge. But she cautions that if you plan to smash cake in your partner’s face, “you might not want chocolate smeared all over.” Whatever flavor you choose, her best advice is this: “I always tell couples to choose a cake flavor they love, not what is traditional or trendy.”
Choose a cake flavor you love, not what is traditional or trendy. —Cassidy Budge, Flour & Flourish
OFF THE GRIDDLE
Like cupcakes and macarons, waffles are the latest craze to hit the wedding scene. But rather than serve them hot off the iron with butter and syrup, the pastry pros at Culinary Crafts stack them into one-of-a-kind Liege waffle cakes that brides, grooms, and guests can’t wait to dig their forks into. “Liege waffles are made from a very stiff yeast batter filled with bits of pearl sugar, which creates the super crispy exterior while still being soft and tender inside,” explains Mary Crafts-Homer. The waffles are layered with pastry filling and whipped cream and topped with fresh peaches and berries. Crafts-Homer suggests pairing the doughy dessert with a spread of mini chocolate pots de crème, salted caramel and pecan shortbread, blood orange panna cotta, and any of Culinary Crafts’ luscious homemade gelatos.
Liege waffles are made from batter filled with bits of pearl sugar. —Mary Crafts-Homer, Culinary Crafts
For a wintry twist on trendy naked cakes, swap tiers of basic vanilla for stacks of decadent almond-chocolate cake layered with vanilla buttercream and adorned with sugar-dusted blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries. “The simplicity and raw beauty of naked cakes is timeless and appeals to couples who don’t want a super flashy cake but still want something stunning,” says Olivia Maxwell of Rockstar Cakery, who created this towering cocoa confection. She estimates this cake feeds 98 guests but notes that when a baker quotes serving numbers, it’s based on cutting your cake correctly. If you don’t have a planner or caterer at your reception to help you slice the confection, a sharp knife, tall glass of warm water, and a towel—rinse and wipe the knife between cuts—will help do the trick.