Mmm, cake, the sweetest decision to make for any wedding, yet one that’s all-too-easy to get horribly wrong (Unfortunately one wedding I attended years ago had a beautiful cake that was mouldy inside when cut into!!)
Luckily, we had Sarah at Maison Cupcake, a friend of a friend and an amaaaazing food blogger and baker, on our side. Honestly, she’s already in my RSS feed reader and I want to eat her whole site on a regular basis!! Like James’s Auntie Anne (who did our flowers), Sarah’s also a “keen amateur” and not usually a baker for hire. With the quality and detail in the cakes she made for us, though I’m sure she could make a living from this if she wanted to!
We mostly wanted cupcakes, both for ease of serving and the ability to taste more flavours, but we also opted to have a small cake for us to cut. All we stipulated is that we didn’t want a fruitcake (as is traditional for UK wedding cakes) and that we didn’t want to use a cake topper or have writing on it or anything. Sarah suggested something like this chocolate and booze-soaked cherry cake and we nearly bit her arm off! She topped it all with a delicious fondant icing, and yes, she made all those tiny flowers herself!!
Plus 100(!!) cupcakes, split up into five flavours:
- Honey Matcha (Japanese green tea)
- Chocolate with Bailey’s icing
- Fig and Pedro Ximines (a spicy, sweet Spanish port)
- Lemon and Lavender
- White Chocolate and Raspberry
We’d given her a long list of flavours and ideas off various food blogs and she picked these out of the list. We were happy because they were flavours we loved and she got to have some fun in trying out new combos and decorations. I can barely begin to fathom the amount of logistics that went into making 100 cupcakes in five different flavours, plus five different buttercream icings, all within the span of a few days so everything would be fresh for the wedding. And Sarah thought of things I hadn’t even considered, like the placement of the cupcakes in the room, and what sort of cases, and the sturdiness of the cupcake boxes, and exactly how to transfer a gorgeous and delicate wedding cake onto a plate without losing any tiny flowers (it involves a scalpel!).
Seriously, though, if you didn’t love Sarah before, you sure will now, because she’s posted up her recipe for the Chocolate Bailey’s cupcakes! If you’re a friend of mine who’s tasted my chocolate Bailey’s cupcakes, believe me when I say that hers were WAY better than mine. I defer to the master here!
The cupcake liners are broderie anglaise paper lace, a nod to all my sewing!
As we finished cutting the cake at the ceremony, I said “oh, and I now declare the cupcake table officially open!” – I didn’t even finish the sentence before people were jumping up and running over to the cupcake table! Needless to say, there were not many left at all!
The cakestands for the cake and cupcakes we made from mismatched IKEA plates and glassware. I originally wanted mismatched vintage plates but all we could find in charity shops were either a) cheap and ugly, or b) super expensive and twee, so IKEA it was. We used three different heights of glasses underneath, and just gluegunned them together the night before the wedding. They were plenty strong enough to hold together and serve their purpose, but came apart with a bit of tugging so were easy to transport home.
All of these photos are by Paul Tanner at Sixpence