I jumped at the opportunity to make a cake for my friends’ wedding -a researcher in sustainability and environmental issues and a landscape architect. Imagine the possibilities! And the amounts of green icing!
After talking them round to it – a mix of twisting fingers and emotional blackmail – I got the all clear under the condition that I would make cupcakes for the kids, who might not be too keen on the whole wedding cake idea. You can find the cupcakes – and the recipe – here.
The first step was to come up with a rough layout. Once I had decided on a size and a plan, I drew the outlines on a sheet of parchment paper, onto which I put the finished bits and bobs to see how they would fit into the final design.
One Week to go: making the decorations
Having purchased large quantities of coloured icing (I know I could have made it myself, but you have to cut a corner occasionally) and with the help of a box of decorating tools from my neighbour, I began making a range of plants for the raised beds the weekend prior to the event.With my experience with play-doh I found this much easier than expected:
Two days to do: baking the two cakes
Two days before the wedding, I made the Sacher gateau. I used two 23cm/9” springforms (or rather one after another, but I had to make two lots of dough and it has to go straight into the oven each time).
One day to go: putting it all together
The evening before the wedding I cut off the top of the first cake, to create a straight surface, and cut bot cakes once vertically. I used the cut off bump as ‘soil’ for the raised beds in the design and froze the top half of the second cake in case I fancy half a Sacher Gateau sometime in the future.
I stuck the three layers on top of each other with layers of heated apricot jam; then I covered the entire cake with the runny jam, using a sieve to remove any bits and to create an even surface for the first layer of green icing.
I spent about two hours decorating the cake. I used the leftover cake top to cut out the ‘soil’ for the raised beds.
On the sides I used bunting to display the names and a ‘just wedding’ note as a token gesture towards the occasion.