Gluten-Free Wedding Cake How-To
Hi. HELP Looked but cannot find GF wedding cake recipe for 60 people need by 9/11/07 Can you help please. Thank you For all you offer.
I received this e-mail on Saturday and my heart flipped a little. See, before I started baking gluten-free, even before I went to culinary school, I made wedding cakes. So, this question was the confluence of my passions: gluten-free baking and wedding cakes! Wheee!
So, let's begin. The reason I don't have a "wedding cake" recipe on the site is because any favorite recipe can be used to create a wedding cake. Plus, each wedding cake requires a different recipe. The writer needs a cake for 60. Some folks need a cake for 75 or 200 or ...well you get the point. Therefore, you need to do a little math to determine how many times you need to multiple your favorite gluten-free cake recipe.
First, you need to decide what shape and size cake pans you will be using. Cake pans come in a dizzying array of shapes-- from round to oval to heart to square--so, this is a big decision! Usually brides will select the shape (i.e. round) and then the baker must determine the size of cakes needed. I suggest referencing a cake decorating book to get this information. Usually, they contain charts with the various sizes and yields of cake pans. Not only will the chart tell you how many servings each cake size yields, it will tell you how many cups of batter are required to make each layer. This is important information as you will see below.
Our baker needs to make a wedding cake for 60 people. If she selects round pans, she would need a 6-inch, 8-inch, and 10-inch cake. Traditionally the top cake isn't included in the serving calculation because it is saved for the bride and groom's one year anniversary. According to my book, this would give our gluten-free baker 64 servings. (Honestly, I always go heavy when making a cake in case some folks want to eat two pieces. I would make an 8-inch, 10-inch and 12-inch cake. Giving me a total of 95 servings. But that is just me.)
Once you know what cake pans you are using, you need to find out how many cups of batter your favorite recipe makes. Do this by making a test batch and measuring the batter. (Most recipes make approximately 5 to 6 cups of batter.) Using our example, an 8-inch, 10-inch and 12-inch wedding cake would require 33 cups of batter. This is about 7x an average recipe. Once you have that information, you are ready to bake! (Again, a cake decorating book will tell you how many cups of batter each pan requires. You don't need to figure this out on your own!)
After the cake is baked, it needs to be doweled for support and iced. To learn how to do this correctly, again, I suggest snuggling up with a cake decorating book. There you will find all the "nuts and bolts" of creating a wedding cake that will stand tall, and not collapse, during the wedding!
I want to mention that some gluten-free cake recipes don't work well with larger sizes. I have tested several of my recipes in large pans and have found they worked just fine. If you are using a new or different recipe, I suggest doing a test run with a large pan. This way you will know whether or not the recipe will work. (And you can bring the test cake to a nursing home or celiac support group meeting!)