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Season 4 - Episode 2

NASA Cake!

Chris-Garren-Nasa_120x90
Sunday, April 3, 2011

NASA Cake!

This season, we’re tackling a lot of really fun and non-traditional wedding cakes. It’s a really good representation of our range of work, from the more traditional tiered cakes to some really crazy shapes and ideas. It’s been a lot of fun, but also a lot of work!

For anyone who’s ever stopped by our bakery during a filming week, they have an idea of exactly how crazy it gets here. Behind the scenes, we aren’t just filming one cake, but three episodes over the span of five or six days. As if that weren’t enough, we also have to squeeze in time to make all of our non-filming cakes amidst all the extra crew, lights, and filming equipment. Meanwhile, off camera, the phone is ringing off the hook, customers are ordering lattes and scones, and we have our regular appointments and consultations! As you can imagine, all this makes for very long days and whirlwind weeks.

The cake on this first episode, the NASA cake, was monstrously large. The bottom tier was a huge octagonal cake, which by itself probably weighed about forty pounds. Because this particular tier was an octagon, it had a lot of straight lines and it was kind of a pain to panel each of the sides of the cake with fondant! When working with non-conventionally shaped tiers, it always adds extra time to fill, ice, and cover the cakes. We were also working with black fondant, which is always a challenge because once you add that much paste color to the fondant, it becomes very soft and hard to work with.

Our favorite part of the cake was the top, where Marjie’s silhouette couple was dancing under the crescent moon. She started with a flat sugar plaque and added fondant on it to make the image in relief. It was perfect for this cake and added to the “fly me to the moon” feeling. Chris especially loved the effect of the pastillage clouds and the 3-D moon. It made the cake feel very celestial and gave it a touch of the ethereal.

One of the challenges in designing this cake was doing something of the space and NASA theme without getting too literal. Marlon and Christie didn’t want the cake to be whimsical, but wanted to incorporate a dancing couple and some sort of “fly me to the moon” theme. We had to find a balance so that the cake would still be fitting for a wedding, while also incorporating the themes in a cohesive way.

One of the standout moments in this episode had nothing to do with the making of the cake, but instead with the delivery. The venue was on the second story, with no elevator, and the stairs were a straight shot of uneven wooden steps. When carrying cakes, it’s always easier when the two people are of the same height. For us, let’s just say that one of the chefs was about a foot shorter than the other. It was not the smoothest delivery and probably even ranks with the most stressful deliveries, but it turned out great in the end.

And Marlon and Christie loved the cake!

 

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