Summer weddings bring to mind delicate flowers and easy breezy flowing attire for you and your guests. Everything is lighter in the summer; from the clothing to the floral accessories, and it’s a time when most people use a light touch with their menus and decor as well. So don’t forget to do the same with your wedding cake. Here are some ideas for choosing an amazing cake for your summer affair.
Choosing Seasonal Flavors
Warmer months tend to mean lighter flavors and fillings, and often that means fruit fillings from citrus to berries. You can go with a traditional lemon meringue cake or opt for one of the trendier, off beat options like lemon basil or lemon verbena. Tropical options, like coconut, are also a nice alternative. According to Amy Brace of Amy’s Cupcake Shoppe, “We have been seeing a lot of bright fruit flavors for summer such as lemon, rhubarb and raspberry. Bright and fresh flavors with ingredients when they are in season. The most popular flavor we are seeing is our Almond Wedding Cake. It’s a beautiful light and fluffy cake that is perfect for summer. We’ve also paired our almond wedding cake with fresh strawberry or raspberry jam, or our fresh and bright lemon curd.”
If you’re a chocolate lover, don’t fret, because you might want to shy away from anything dense and rich, but you can still implement chocolate in lighter ways. Think chocolate dipped strawberries as an accompaniment or milk chocolate ganache over vanilla cake as a base.
Photo by Lauren Baker Photography, courtesy of Amy’s Cupcake Shoppe
Photo courtesy of johnjeanjuan
The Lighter the Better
A dense and rich cake is not as appealing in the summer but that also means picking lighter ingredients, not just lighter flavors. Avoid gum paste which tends to be heavy, and if you go with buttercream just make sure your baker plans for the heat. Brace warns, “Anything with buttercream will melt at 90 degrees” and baker and owner of johnjeanjuan, Terry John Vila, explains, “it’s really all about the assembly. If the client wants a custard filling, a buttercream dam piped around the border of each layer will contain any filling. We make sure that these cakes are well chilled and delivered cold. Then, as the cake sits out a bit before the ceremony, it will be the perfect serving temperature at cutting time.”
Also consider that you’re better off with lighter shades (the actual colors of your cake) than darker ones for a summer affair. Lighter hues won’t run as much in the heat. There are so many pretty and yummy white cakes you can adorn with real flowers to up the style anty.
Photo courtesy of johnjeanjuan
Naked cakes are all the rage and this is a great opportunity to embrace the trend. With no icing on the outside of the cake, you don’t have to worry about it melting. Naked cakes come in a range of flavors and colors to easily coordinate with your wedding, and are equally delicious as their covered-up counterparts. As Vila explains, “if the heat is extreme or the wedding will take place entirely outdoors, a “Naked Cake” might be your best bet. The simple exterior scrape of buttercream on the finished cake can be beautiful in its simplicity, but also the perfect design foil for the summer heat because, when it’s hot, buttercream melts, fondant weeps and custards collapse.”
In the end it’s up to you, so pick a cake you love and your guests will too. Talk to your baker about what they think is the best choice for your summer wedding, and come up with something that is practical but also delicious. No matter what cake you decide on, if you’re having an outdoor affair and it’s really hot keep your cake indoors as long as possible before your cake cutting moment to avoid a total meltdown.
Photos by Anna Grinets Photography
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