If you're one of my cake buddies, you likely know how much I hate piping flowers. I say this theoretically, because I haven't piped a frosting flower since I was about 16, and my good friend Medea got married. No wait, it was before then - I'd already gotten sick of them. I remember now - I'd made calla lilies out of sheets of beeswax to adorn the top of her cake! Anyway, my memory issues aside.. I'm much more of a fondant jockey than a traditional cake lady. I'd rather sculpt than do embroidery, too!
So, when I met up with a cool couple that I wanted to work with.. but who wanted a cake COMPLETELY covered with piped flowers, I faced a dilemma. I ended up throwing my misgivings to the wind, and signed on with them.
Flash forward several months. After a week of wild piping, cursing at uncooperative egg whites, and many, many broken flowers, I finally dropped off the finished product today. I was so pleased with it, I had to share!
This style was actually chosen by the groom. It's 4 tiers (12", 14", 16", and 18"), but done quite a bit differently than my normal set up. You see, the groom wanted a cake that was more spread out that tall, so each tier of cake is only half the height of my normal tiers! Usually, we have 4 layers of cake and 3 layers of filling per tier...in this case, we have 2 layers of cake and 1 layer of filling, for a height of just over 2" per tier. Unique!
A couple paragraphs ago, you may have wondered about cursing at egg whites. That's because the piped flowers on this cake aren't buttercream.. but instead, are meringues. That's right - crunchy, airy baked cookies, which I'd piped in the shapes of various flowers.. and in 5 different shades! Several hundred of them, in fact - many of which were piped and baked as individual petals, then assembled with more meringue, and baked a second time! Very fussy! I swear, if I see another meringue flower in the near future, I'll scream!
Anyway, the final effect is very cool. The flavors they chose - chocolate poached pear, and caramelized pear - are very elegant, and it'll be a funky twist to have that crisp bit of meringue accompanying it. The bride was there as I dropped it off, and loved it - I wish I could have seen the grooms' face, as he saw his particular wishes brought to fruition!
Interestingly enough, aside from the insane monotony of doing several hundred flowers in one go like this.. I've actually come to sort of enjoy piping them. So, no need to feel weird about asking me for frosting flowers - I won't actually scream at you!