How To Construct A Wedding Cake

Posted: Wednesday, May 13, 2009

n With a soft pastry brush, brush crumbs from the cake layers.

Tools for baking and constructing a three-tiered wedding cake are readily available from craft and kitchen supply stores, and on-line cake decorating sources.

* Place a few dabs of buttercream on the 14-inch cake board cake and place one 14-inch cake layer on the board on a large flat round cake platter or cake stand that is at least 4 inches larger than the bottom cake tier.

* Spread a thin layer of raspberry jam over top of cake layer, almost to the ends. (Do not let jam run down sides of cake or it will bleed into frosting and ruin the finished look of the cake.)

* Chill layer for 15 minutes to firm up the jam.

* With an icing spatula, spread a thin-to-medium layer of buttercream over the jam taking care not to swirl any of the buttercream into the jam.

* Top with the remaining 14-inch cake layer, then frost top of cake with a thin layer of frosting. Refrigerate until firm.

Place the 10-inch cake separator on top of the cake and gently press separator into frosting in order to leave impressions from the separator's plastic feet.

* Remove separator. Insert four dowels or drinking straws into impressions until you reach the bottom of the cake stand.

* Using shears, cut the dowels even with top of cake. Spread a thin layer of frosting over top of cake and refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes. Again, place a few dabs of frosting on the 10-inch cake board, placing a 10-inch cake layer on top of its board.

* Cover cake layer with a thin layer of raspberry jam, then refrigerate to firm. Again, top the jam with a thin-to-medium layer of frosting, then top with remaining 10-inch cake layer. Spread a thin layer of frosting on top of the 10-inch layer; refrigerate until firm.

* Place the 6-inch separator on top of the frosted 10-inch cake and press lightly to leave an impression.

* Remove cake separator. Repeat process for supporting cake with the dowels, once more cutting the dowels even with the cake.

* Spread top of cake with a thin layer of frosting, and refrigerate until firm.

* For the final tier, place one of the 6-inch layers on a cake board that has been dabbed with a few drops buttercream. Repeat with raspberry jam and buttercream filling. Top with last 6-inch layer.

* Center the 12-inch wooden-dowel in middle of the cake and with a rubber mallet, tap it gently through the layers, until you reach down to the cake stand. Cut dowel even with cake.

* Using an icing spatula, apply a thin layer of buttercream over top and sides of cake.

* Refrigerate until firm, then frost with an additional layer of buttercream, using long strokes to make buttercream as smooth as possible. Using pastry tip number 21, pipe a simple border around cake.

* Cake can be constructed and refrigerated up to two days in advance, but the fresh flowers and buttercream roses should be added just a few hours prior to serving. If the cake is to be transported, bring along extra frosting and tools in the event "repairs" have to be made, or plan to construct the cake, on site.

* Yield: Up to 85 servings.

For the cake:

2 (14-inch) cake layers, baked, cooled and leveled

2 (10-inch) cake layers, baked, cooled and leveled

2 (6-inch) cake layers, baked, cooled and leveled

12 cups buttercream frosting, room temperature

1 (18-ounce) jar seedless red raspberry jam

Supplies needed:

Large round platter or cake stand, about 18-inches in diameter

1 (14-inch) gold foil cake board

1 (10-inch) gold foil cake board

1 (6-inch) gold foil cake board

1 (10-inch) plastic footed cake separator

1 (6-inch) plastic footed cake separator

8 (6-inch) cardboard dowels or non-flexible plastic drinking straws, cut to 6-inch lengths

1 (1/4-inch), 12-inch long wooden dowel

Icing spatula

Cutting shears

Rubber mallet

Pastry tip, (Wilton number 21)

Pastry bags

Plastic flower spikes

Fresh edible flowers (such as roses) and buttercream roses for decorating cake

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