I have not mentioned any wedding business in a while. Mostly because, well, we haven't done much planning. 9 months to go, and so far we have set a date (May 15th, 2010), drafted a relatively small guest list and secured a location. The next step in my mind, perhaps the most important aspect (certainly my favorite subject!), is food. Forget the save-the-dates, color palettes and poofy dresses! It's the part about cake that has gotten me all worked up. Cake!
Well, not exactly. We are not interested in a wedding cake. I'm not too keen on most wedding traditions ... we're shooting for a small, relaxed outdoor wedding, minus the fluff and formality, plus everything that is awesome, i.e. each other, good food, nature, people we like. To risk sounding like a huge nerd, picture Bilbo Baggins' 111th birthday party in the beginning of the Fellowship of the Ring. A genuine good time. Simple and sweet.
What is so wrong with a wedding cake? They cost a lot. And they seem sort of fussy, if you ask me. Not just any old person can cut into a three-tiered job. It's usually some lady in a white smock, going about it like she's carving a Thanksgiving turkey: first she pulls off the skin, a strange layer of semi-edible, grainy icing that comes off in sheets. Then, she'll dissect the cake into hundreds of tiny slivers, separated according to white and dark meat. I mean, vanilla and chocolate. Many wedding cakes are crumby and dry, slathered with an extra thick layer of overly sweet, hydrogenated buttercream, reminiscent of spackling paste. I know it is not always this way, but $3-10(!!!) a slice is too much to risk.
So, we leaned heavily in the pie direction. I was determined to have stacks and stacks of fruit pies! How cute would that be for an outdoor, barnyard wedding? They'd look so nice spread out on a checkered table cloth, amidst ball jars filled with Arnie Palms and cucumber water. But then I thought, that could get a little messy. And you know how you cut into even the most perfect pie, and the whole thing starts to ooze and collapse? After just a small sampling of each pie, it would be like, BEHOLD! Plates and plates of GOOP!! The idyllic checkered table cloth would be stained with blueberry splotches. Little mounds of gloppity gloops, topped with hats of crumbled crust. Sticky fingers, stained shirts. Chaos.
We decided cupcakes were the ticket. You don't even need to have plates or forks (::snip, snip:: cutting costs!) to eat a cupcake. An honest, straight forward cup of cake. It's a damned party, right? Why should we fool around with the fussy details? A cupcake isn't trying to fool anyone with that despicable fondant or silk flowered cake topper. A cupcake just hangs out, waiting to go in a mouth. That's it. That's the kind of wedding we'll have. Just cut all of the crap and get straight to the fun-having.
We decided to lock in a deal (Or contract. Everything with weddings is contract, contract, deposit, contract!) with our favorite bakery in town, Cake Flour. They use natural, organic and when possible, local ingredients. While their tiny shop has only a small selection of treats, they change up the flavors daily and everything is spectacular. We tried lots of cupcakes before we decided on three: blueberry-lemon pound cake, devil's food with coconut almond buttercream and our favorite, banana truffle.
Now, I wish it were this easy to find a reasonably-priced caterer who offered substantial, natural, locally grown food. Delicious REAL food. Any ideas?
Psst! Louisville friends: Cake Flour is in the running for Leo's Best of Louisville (bakery) award. You have until tomorrow to mosey on over to their shop, use this coupon, try a cupcake or two and vote for them here.