Martha Stewart's Wedding Cakes

“Martha Stewart’s Wedding Cakes” is a breathtaking book: a large tome featuring a glorious gallery of the best cake designs (and flavours!) that have been featured in the pages of Martha Stewart Weddings magazine, more than 100 recipes and a skillfully put together glossary of tools and techniques to help the experienced baker create one of these towering visions of beauty.

The wedding cakes are not actually Martha’s cakes, despite the title, although she can certainly be credited for sussing out a talented designer and baker like Wendy Kromer, who collaborated with Martha on the book. Kromer has worked for Martha Stewart for over a decade, creating those artistic cakes and whimsical confections that we’ve all secretly longed to taste in the pages of the magazine. She is also the founder of Wendy Kromer Confections in Sandusky, Ohio, where she and her staff create personalized cakes for all kinds of occasions.

The book features advice from both Martha and Wendy about how to approach the possibly-daunting task of choosing a wedding cake – or baking one yourself!

Imparting advice from her days as a caterer, when she designed hundreds of elaborate weddings for her clients, Martha provides tips on organization and time management, as well as simple techniques to streamline the process of making a wedding cake. Recognizing her limitations as a wedding cake baker and designer, she brings Wendy in for the hardcore advice.

Half of the cakes in the book are Wendy’s. The other half are by designers who have worked for Martha Stewart Weddings. All of the cakes, though, share the same attention to detail and beautiful craftsmanship one has come to expect from any Martha Stewart venture. Some of the ideas and examples featured in the “Gallery of Cakes” chapter will leave you truly awestruck.

One thing I have always liked about Martha Stewart Weddings is that many of the entertaining ideas and confections and cakes can be used in the design of any large party, whether or not a new bride is present. A cake recipe can be used for a milestone birthday party; a table setting motif can be used for an anniversary dinner; a flower arrangement can be used at any time. The same is true with Martha Stewart’s Wedding Cakes. Any of the recipes can be dressed down or scaled back to create smaller, less ostentatious cakes for any occasion.

The book is a visual delight with its silver fonts and design elements and illustrative photography in a well-bound, hardcover format. It is filled with all kinds of inspiring ideas, which can also be used as a learning tool. Everything Martha does must have a teaching component however veiled that component may be by the sheer beauty of the presentation.

Mastering the art of wedding cake creation (from designing to baking to decorating to serving) is the aim of the book, but I’m sure Martha will forgive us if we simply turn the pages longingly and get taken in by the fantasia of elaborate cakes!

A charming Calico cake (above) with gum-paste floral designs on fondant icing.
Meringue mushrooms perch along the snowy ridges of a tiered chocolate cake with Swiss meringue frosting.
For inspiration, Martha and Wendy suggest creating a bulletin board of ideas for the cake design and motif. Nothing is offlimits: pretty boxes, stationery, wallpaper and fabric can all be used as inspirational design elements for the cake.
Real pinecones flecked with royal icing sit atop a layered pyramid of blue for an icy, wintry look. Pine needles are made of chocolate shavings.

1 comment:

Carolyn said...

I just love Martha style cakes. In fact...... MY Wedding Cake was inspired by a Martha Cake.

This books looks so interesting.I think I am gonna have to buy this book just to look at the pretty cakes.