Weddings are probably the most popular occasions that call for beautiful cakes, but they’re not the only ones that involve a high number of guests clamoring for a piece of delectable dessert. The planning that goes into making a wedding cake is essentially the same for large celebration cakes, so once you learn how it’s done, your new skills can be applied to a variety of events. After all, you might have a wedding for 100 people, but you might also have a retirement party for the same number. These non-wedding events come up all the time – office parties, graduations, anniversaries, significant birthdays, to name a few – so why not take advantage of all the tips and tricks of the trade that apply to wedding cakes?
Parties topping out at about 66 people might be able to get away with a single 14-inch cake, but most events with higher guest counts will need a multi-tiered cake. Here are a few things to consider before you get started:
- Venue – Is the event local or would you have to drive and deliver the cake six hours away? It can be done, but it adds a lot of stress and planning to the job.
- Climate – Temperature is key. If it is the summer or you’re in a warm location, there is a chance that the outdoor party might be in 90° heat. Will you be prepared for possible consequences?
- Storage – Refrigeration will come into play at various stages of preparation. Do you have room? Can you make room? Will the event space where you are bringing the cake have room? Check and check again.
- Reality Check – Before you commit, ask yourself if you are experienced and organized enough to take on the job, whether it’s your son’s bar mitzvah or your own wedding. Assess this well or you might regret it later. There are many aspects of large-cake preparation that can be done ahead, and there are also last-minute or day-before requirements, and if there is a rehearsal party or something similar, you have to take this into consideration as well. There is much that goes into planning and you must be very well organized.
Have you made it this far? Great, let’s make this cake!
Image: Dédé Wilson