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I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

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Entries in Cake (10)

Thursday
Jul162009

Covered with Icing!

A quickie post to mention the lovely Miss Heather over at Covered with Icing here in Nashville. I am so happy she followed through with me! I had stopped in her booth as soon as I walked into the bridal show on Sunday. She had a prime position right by the entrance and she was swamped with tasters! I'm pretty good at weaseling my way through crowds and was able to get a cake sample fairly quickly. Super-yum is what I say to the cake sample!

She also had what looked like truffles presented on platters. Now, I'm not a huge fan of your every-day truffles, but I'm not going to turn down free chocolate either. I mean seriously, do I seem foolish to anyone out there? Little did I know that these were cake truffles.

Holy sweet mother of Christmas, were these good. I mean, "slap your momma" good! Right about the time I was digging into the first cake truffle I ate that day, Heather approached me to give me the down-low on her goodies and we got to chatting.

I just spent some time on her website this morning and have found her offering for wedding cakes to be spectacular.

Here's the skinny direct from her website:

Wedding and Groom's cake prices begin at $3.00 per serving for butter cream and $3.50 per serving for fondant. A serving is based on a 2" x 1" x 4" slice. I have worked hard to come up with a fondant recipe that I think is very good. It tastes like icing and will have a layer of butter cream underneath. Please ask for a taste during your consultation. Wedding cake tiers consist of 4 layers of cake and 3 layers of filling or frosting. I require a non-refundable $50 deposit to reserve your wedding date. This deposit will be applied to your order, but is not refundable if the order is canceled, as I book months in advance for weddings.

Your wedding cake pricing includes a special 6" heart-shaped "honeymoon" cake for you to take along after the wedding. Sometimes a bride and groom only get a tiny slice of cake (and maybe frosting up their nose) just for the pictures, but miss out on the culinary masterpiece they helped create. I will assure you that will not happen if you order from Covered with Icing. Pricing also includes a special certificate for your 1st anniversary "tier". This day and age; most people prefer not to freeze their top tier for their anniversary, but to enjoy a beautifully decorated fresh cake instead.

OK, I think the extra little touches here are totally fabulous and all for $3.00 a serving? Not bad in the world wedding cakes. Her little cake truffles are $10/dozen, with a minimum of 3 or 4 dozen, I can't remember. That's like $.83 a truffle! I snagged these photos from her website and blog.

Mini-Cupcake Topiary!

Cake Truffle Topiary

She also has chocolate covered mini-Oreos! I swear, I almost went into a diabetic coma after eating one! It was that good. After wandering around the show for a few hours, we were headed out and I thought that I might ask Heather a few more questions as I was still dreaming about the cake truffles. I thought that I might be changing my favor strategy and using the cake truffles instead of the cookies. She let me take four of them home to see if they fit in the favor box and to see if The Candyman approved. While he liked them a lot, he wants to stick with the cookies. Fair enough. However, I'm now thinking they might be a nice end-of-evening snack, or even an addition to the OOT bags. Still in thinking mode. They were just so good! I have to wait and see how the budget goes. They aren't that expensive.

So all total, I think I ate 4 cake truffles, a chocolate covered Oreo and 2 cake samples just from her booth. That does NOT include the multiple cake samples nor the catering samples I had. And I'm wondering why the scale is 2 pounds heavier this week. Um, duh.

Friday
Jun052009

Dia De Los Muertos

Otherwise known as Day of the Dead.

From Wikipedia:

"The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. The celebration occurs on the 2nd of November in connection with the Catholic holiday of All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day which take place on those days. Traditions include building private altars honoring the deceased, using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed, and visiting graves with these as gifts."

The Candyman's mother died of cancer when he was only 11 years old. I keep trying to get him to honor her at our wedding in some way. He doesn't seem really excited about any of my ideas. I can understand that.

I went shopping for a birthday present for him last week at a great shop in Nashville called Pangea. While I didn't find anything for him, I did find our awesome new cake toppers!


They were only $5 each and I just KNEW The Candyman would love them. He did! I didn't really know much about Dia De Los Muertos until after I bought these and looked it up online. Perhaps this is the quiet way to honor The Candyman's mom without announcing her absence in a program or prayer.

I think they make a cute couple, albeit slightly morbid. Just like us. :)

Tuesday
Jun022009

We Need More Than a Velvet Elvis!

So I mentioned a few posts back that we had finally chosen our wedding cake vendor! Hooray! We decided to go with a Cake Buffet versus a traditional wedding cake. I just couldn't stomach the idea of paying a ton of money for something that may, or may not taste good. I don't care if the cake is stacked. I do care if it's expensive.

As you readers already know, I tried my hand at baking my own. While I don't doubt that I could physically accomplish this task, I decided that I should not emotionally attempt it. I'm already baking cookies for my favors. I just don't want to totally freak myself out if things go awry in the kitchen. My goal is to avoid any further WPM (Wedding Planning Meltdowns). I think my family will be happy to hear that I've abandoned a DIY Cake Buffet.

So, after reviewing and tasting countless bakeries and cakes, we opted to go with a small, husband/wife own bakery called Sweet 16th, A Bakery. The Candyman and I met with Ellen, the baker and wife and just loved her.

The bakery is located in East Nashville. East Nashville is home to lots of things: hipsters, crystal meth addicts, musicians, families, great restaurants, crack houses. It's got a great historic feel to it, but it's not all that safe. Now, I'm going to bet serious money that no East Nashvillian would ever stoop to read my bridal blog. However, if I were to say that there's crime in East Nashville (meaning more so than in other neighborhoods) I'd be verbally attacked with a litany of crime statistics from East Nashville dwellers. There seems to be a bit of a fight between east and west Nashville. Hip versus Hop. Cash versus Cashola. Cable versus Digital. iPhone versus Blackberry. Happily, I live in SOUTH Nashville. Nobody lives there and we stay out of directional fights. It's nice.

Back to the cakes. We saw some gorgeous pictures of Ellen's cakes and I'm so excited to have 4 simple, beautifully decorated cakes. The problem is I can't decide which flavors to get. The have 15 cakes to choose from. However, if i want them all to look alike (all with white cream cheese frosting), and I do, then I have to narrow it down to 9 or 10. We know for certain that we're going with the Velvet Elvis Cake (2 layers red velvet cake plus 1 layer of chocolate cake with peanut butter cream between the layers, frosted with white cream cheese frosting). The remaining options are:
Chocolate
Carrot
Banana
Vanilla
Abstract Crunch - chocolate cake with toffee bits between the layers, drizzled with chocolate and frosted with cream cheese frosting.
Lemon Vanilla Cake
Chocolate Raspberry - Chocolate cake infused with raspberry syrup
Chocolate Amaretto - Chocolate cake infused with amaretto

What other 3 flavors should we go with? I feel like I need to decide and tell Ellen before I leave for Asia. I leave June 9th! Ack!

Monday
May182009

Cake, Shoes and JCP

Wow. What a weekend. The Candyman and I had an amazingly full schedule of to-do's all weekend long. We are both exhausted, suffering from allergies, but giddy and happy too.

On Saturday, we had a noon appointment with Sweet 16th - A Bakery and met with husband/wife team Ellen and Dan. While Dan handled the steady stream of customers (all of whom they greeted by name), The Candyman and I sat and discussed cake options with Ellen. While they do not typically do the standard stacked wedding cake, the do offer several varieties of cakes that sounded pretty darn good!

We tasted the chocolate with cream cheese frosting, the vanilla with cream cheese frosting and the red velvet with cream cheese frosting. The Candyman is not a fan of red velvet, but he really liked this one. When I had set the appointment up with Dan, I had mentioned "no banana flavored anything" because, well, banana flavoring tastes like poo. Ellen inquired to my "no banana" request and was determined to prove me wrong. She grabbed a banana muffin for The Candyman and he immediately scarfed and gave a nod of approval. Sweet 16th doesn't use the artificial flavoring that produces the metallic taste I hate. Nice. Ellen's presentation of her single wedding cakes is gorgeous. I wish I had a photo to share. As we have done with out other vendors, we have chosen based on how we feel about the people in addition to the services offered. Maybe that's why it took so long to find a cake vendor - no one quite fit. We think Ellen and Dan do. The cakes vary in cost from $25 (chocolate cake with cream cheese icing) to $45 (The Velvet Elvis: 2 layers red velvet cake, one layer chocolate with peanut butter cream filling and cream cheese icing!). We estimate we'll need about 4 cakes, so this fits into the budget nicely! I need to call them and book for certain, we just need to crunch a few more numbers. Keep your fingers crossed for the cake buffet!

After we were done with the cake tasting, we headed over to Off-Broadway Shoes to see if I could find a pair of cuties for our engagement shoot. I did and they are fabulous and hopefully, you'll see them when I get my engagement shots! TEASE!

However, I did come across these as potential wedding shoes. The blue (and optional cream) ones are lovely, but too high. The ones with the rhinestones were kinda cute, but they didn't have my size and The Candyman was not as interested as I.


The engagement shoot was a blast. Jonathon and Sharon really just are the best people. We had such an amazing time! We met them on Sunday in Franklin, hopped in their van and headed south to Leipers Fork, Tennessee. After several days of rain, the sky had cleared up beautifully, although it was a tad windy. We stopped at a few random places along the way: a discolored cement wall with a barbed wire fence, an old marquis sign and a lonely country road. The owner of the marquis offered it to Sharon and we (OK, it was me) seriously considered hooking it up to the van! I snapped a shot of the marquis and The Candyman along the way:


We arrived in Leipers Fork around 4:30pm or so and cruised around one of the antique stores and snapped a few shots there while we were still in our "casual" clothes of jeans and nice shirts. We changed into our fancier duds and really got down to business. The Candyman did not wear the hat, just so you know.


We took photos outside of store fronts, on an old truck, on benches, on a hill in front of a stream, under this giant gazebo/outside porch thing, in front of cool, old walls and in front of a replica of the General Lee (for those twenty-something brides, that would be the car from The Dukes of Hazard, one of the best 70's TV shows ever). Sa-weet! By the time we got back to our car, it was almost 8pm! I don't know why, but we were completely exhausted when we got home. I mean, basically all we had to do was stand there and make out a little. How awesome is that? OK, we didn't necessarily make out, but there was some smoochin' goin' on! :) I have a slightly higher regard for models now, but not much.

I know that Sharon did a ton of leg-work to scope out the locations and she did an incredible job. All these great photo op spots were within 600 yards or so of each other. It was the first time The Candyman and I had been to Leipers Fork and we will for sure be back! I can't wait to see the photos. I'm not sure when they will be "ready" but I'll be sure to share when they are! So excited to see the outcome of much anticipation and tons of fun yesterday! Thanks you guys! We had a blast!

Wednesday
Apr222009

Cake Hell

The Candyman and I are actually contemplating baking our own wedding cakes. We don't want anything fancy, just something that tastes good and is LESS than $350 (including tax and delivery). To be honest, we can't find one reliable resource that tastes good in all of Nashville who charges less than $3.50 a slice. I think that's sad. I think it's sad that regardless of the amount of work put into a cake (and I know that it's a tough gig), the power-bakers still charge the same amount per slice. I am just looking for a two-tiered cake (bottom to slice, top to keep for our anniversary) and I don't care how big it is. I don't want any decorations, just a butter cream frosting with piping at the base seams. Simple. We are totally cool with serving from sheet cakes in the kitchen. No one will know and no one will care, as long as it's yummy!
Even though I love Martha, this is the kind of cake I do not want: a highly decorated, gum pasted, fondant tower of hell.

Photo courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings.

I want something simple and pretty, like this:
Or this:

The best price I got was around $275, but it took that bakery a week to get me a quote that was incorrect. I fixed it and sent it back and then they took another week to reply. I don't think that's the kind of vendor I want. I need a little more attention to detail from the get-go. Sadly, her cakes were awesome tasting.

I had some email discussion with another, affordable and reccommended baker. I sent her an inquiry email, which she replied to after several days. Her tasting appointments are limited, so I asked her where she was located and what her last appoinment could be (her tasting times are Monday and Tuesday 10-6pm, not the most convenient for working peeps, right?). A week went by with no reply. I resent the email and I got the same, cut and paste email I received the first time, most of which outlined her costs, cake stand rental fee, late fees, depostits, etc. This was annoying, at best. She failed to answer my original questions so I have let her fall off the radar.

We got another very affordable quote from a lisenced home-baker, but her cakes weren't that good. :(

All the other quotes have been through the roof. I spoke to one well-known, highly publicized baker who, when I mentioned other smaller bakers, started slamming them. He claimed one was operating illegally (I checked it out, the claim is false) and that all home-bakers aren't serious about their craft and most don't have health inspections. The one home-baker we spoke to is legal and licensed and insured. I guess my point is that this fancy-schmancy baker was a little rude and unnecessarily competitve.

I read last night on That Bride's blog that she and her groom had a "Cake Buffet." I think that might be a great idea, whether we bake ourselves or not. I think a couple single cakes, decorated with flowers would be quite pretty. We have one or two more independent, small bakers that we need to talk to before we figure out what the hell we're doing. I am not opposed to the cupcake idea either. We have some great cupcake people in Franklin, TN, that I did some preliminary tastings with (meaning, I went in and bought a bunch of cupcakes to try). One was The Curious Gourmet Cupcake Cafe and the other was Ivey Cake. Both had yummy cupcakes and were about the same in price. I think I need to go back to them to chat about cakes. There's also a new-ish bakery in East Nashville called Sweet 16th (it's on 16th Street) and there are some options there too. We need to schedule a tasting at all these places and get some quotes. One of the issues I'm having with cupcakes is that the stands are: a) expensive to buy or rent b) ugly c) don't hold a whole lot of cupcakes. What's a Cakeless Thirty-Something Bride to do? Any tips?

The funny thing is, I don't really enjoy eating a lot of cake. I mean, I LOVE cake. I LOVE icing even more. I just can't eat a lot of it. I was oogy feeling all night after our first cake tasting. I ate much less at the second tasting and still felt a little gross.

Help.

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