Sunday, 23 December 2012

Purple Cake Company Press

We're so excited about having our article about 2013 wedding cake trends featured in the My Wedding Day magazine!!! Here are some photos of the magazine article:

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Bridal Gallery Exhibit

The Purple Cake Company now has a permanent exhibition at The Bridal Gallery at 20 Hospital Road, Hillcrest, KwaZulu/Natal, South Africa.

If you're in the area, you can send us an email or give us a call and we can meet with you there!

Here's our display:

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Christmas Cupcakes

It's almost Christmas!!! So, we thought we'd share our Extra Special Christmas Cupcakes with you....

They are French Vanilla & Fruit Mince Cupcakes with a Brandy Buttercream Frosting. They're a super festive treat and a nice alternative to Christmas mince pies & very easy to make.

Just take your favourite Vanilla cupcake recipe and add 200 - 250g of fruit mince to the batter. Bake them as you would bake any other cupcake. 

To make the frosting, you need a standard quantity of your favourite Vanilla Buttercream and just add 2 tablespoons of brandy to it. Pipe a nice big swirl of the brandy buttercream onto your cupcake and decorate them anyway you want!

We decided to decorate half of the cupcakes with fondant Christmas trees & the other half with double swirls of frosting and silver sprinkles. 

Hope you enjoy these delicious, festive treats! :-)

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Edible Brooches for Cakes or Cupcakes

We have had many brides tell us that they would like to have brooches on their wedding cake, but they can't seem to find a real brooch that suits their style. So while I was searching the web, I came across some chocolate brooches. When I saw these edible brooches, I realized that I could make them myself and customize them to suit my client's needs. I decided that I would try to make some out of our handmade marshmallow fondant. 

Here's how we did it:

We took a small amount of our marshmallow fondant, added some Tylose powder to it (so it will dry harder), then rolled the fondant out to about 5 mm think and cut out 2 different sized circles (1 large & 1 small). We used royal icing to glue the smaller circle on top of the larger circle and then attached large silver "Bling Balls" to the larger circle. We then attached sugar pearls and smaller silver sugar balls to finish off the design on the smaller circle. 

Here's our finished product: Amazing, handmade marshmallow fondant brooches!

Here's a close-up photo of the edible brooch on one of our red velvet cupcakes!

We can't wait to try out some more fondant brooch designs!!!

Monday, 15 October 2012

The Bride’s Guide to Understanding Wedding Cake Prices

“Why are wedding cakes so expensive?” I have been asked this question hundreds of times by brides when they receive their quote. Due to this frequently asked question, I thought it might be a good idea to compile a list of things that determine the cost of a wedding cake. So here goes:

1. Wedding cakes are truly works of art

Wedding cakes are custom designed to suit your requirements. Many, many man hours go into creating a wedding cake and the cake designer’s labour amounts to most of the cost. Remember, time is money!

2. Size

The more guests you have at your wedding, the more expensive the cake will be. This means that more cake tiers have to be made, which requires copious amounts of cake batter, etc. 

3. Flavour

Plain vanilla sponges are obviously your cheapest cake flavour, but if you’re looking to have something like a rich chocolate or carrot cake, expect to pay more because they require more ingredients.

4. Quality Ingredients

Most reputable cake designers will use only the best quality ingredients, which are expensive. If you want a cake that tastes absolutely delicious, it needs to be made with good quality ingredients. 

5. Design

The cake design that you choose will drastically affect the price of the wedding cake. If the cake requires fondant, this has to be handmade, in some cases, (here at The Purple Cake Company we make our own marshmallow fondant) and rolled out to a smooth finish. If you choose to have sugar flowers, these need to be made days in advance, one petal at a time. Bright colours are also more expensive than white or pale colours. 

Remember, that most wedding cakes will take at least 2 days to bake and decorate, but ingredients & equipment have to be bought well before the baking and decorating stage. Therefore, cake designers have to factor this into the price, as it is expensive and time consuming.

So, when it comes to wedding cakes, you definitely get what you pay for!

Thursday, 27 September 2012

10 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Wedding Cake

1. Choose a Style

The cake should be part of your wedding, so choose a cake that's compatible with the style of the venue, your wedding dress, the flowers, or the decor. If you want colourful accents (like sugar flowers, ribbons, etc.), give your cake designer fabric swatches, so they can match the colours.

2. Size

Always specify how many guests you need the cake to serve. A 3 tier cake would normally serve about 50 guests, whereas a 5 tier will serve 120+ guests.

3. Price

Wedding cakes are usually individually priced, based on the style, size, flavour and decorations required. The more complicated the cake is (based on elaborate designs or specialised fillings), the higher the price. Fondant icing is more expensive than buttercream, and if you want elaborate fondant shapes, vibrant colours, or handmade sugar flower detailing, you'll pay for the cake designer's labour.

4. Budget, Budget, Budget

Find a cake that’s in your budget. The best way to do this is to tell your cake designer what your budget is and give them an idea of what style you are looking for. They will supply you with a few ideas that will suit your budget and style.

5. Consider the Weather

If you’re getting married outdoors in a hot climate (or indoors without air-conditioning) stay away from whipped cream, buttercream and chocolate frostings, as they will melt! Ask your cake designer for frosting options that are suitable for hot climates (fondant is usually the best option).

6. Don’t Always Believe Your Magazines

Don't expect your cake designer to be able to replicate exactly what you see in a magazine. Firstly, a lot of the cakes in magazines are iced pieces of Styrofoam (dummy cakes) which will always look better than a real iced cake. Secondly, magazines have food stylists, editors, and assistants working nonstop to keep the cakes looking perfect. So if it’s a real cake, they spend hours fixing the sweating, leaning, or sagging that can happen to a cake after it's been sitting for a while. And if that doesn't work, they can fix it with Photoshop!

7. It’s All in the Details

When it comes to decoration, adornment costs vary wildly. The most inexpensive option is fresh fruits or flowers that, in some cases, can be applied by you or your florist for a minimal fee. On the high end are delicate fondant flowers, which are constructed by hand, one petal at a time. All decorations - including fondant or chocolate-moulded flowers, lace detailing & fondant shapes -- will raise the price. So, if you want an amazing handmade wedding cake with intricate decorations, be prepared to pay for it!

8. Displaying the Cake

Your cake will most likely be on display before it's cut and served to your guests. Make sure there is a designated cake table that allows the most elegant presentation possible. Once you have a cake table, make sure you dress it up and make it a focal point of your reception!

9. Transporting the Cake

Don’t forget to ask your cake designer if they will transport and set-up the cake at your venue. Some cakes need to be assembled at the wedding venue, so always give the cake designer enough time to deliver and set-up. Most cake designer will charge extra for delivery & set-up, so make sure you add that into your cake budget.

10. Serving Your Cake

Always find out if the staff at your wedding reception will be cutting your cake into the required serving size (you don’t want to be stuck cutting hundreds or pieces of cake!). If they don’t cut the cake for you, cupcakes or mini cakes are the answer – no cutting required!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Wedding Cake Trends 2013

Mint is going to be a huge trend for 2013. It’s a great colour and lends itself well to many different themes. Paired with pastel yellow, it makes for an amazing looking cake. Not only are you going to see this soft colour on the wedding cake decorations, but you will taste it as well. The flavour will be incorporated into the cake itself (think vanilla peppermint or choc-mint cake) or into the icing (think fluffy mint buttercreams and peppermint caramel fillings). 

Birds will also be featuring in 2013 wedding cakes. You’ll be seeing bird details on the cake such as painted birds, fondant birds, bird cake toppers and birds’ nest decorations. 

Vintage inspired wedding cakes will still be a big trend in 2013. These cake designs will be inspired by the bride’s wedding dress, so we’ll be seeing lots of lace patterns and sparkling accents to mimic the crystal or pearl buttons. Another great vintage inspired design element will be large sugar roses, which will add an ultra-feminine touch to the wedding cake.

Black & white will still be a popular trend in 2013. Whether it’s a vintage style theme or a more clean and modern look, black and white will still be making a statement at weddings. A new version of the black and white colour scheme will be to add a splash of colour on the cake, by adding colourful sugar flowers.

Hand-painted cakes will be another trend in 2013. It’s a way to turn your cake into an edible canvas. Inspirations can come from anywhere, like the pattern on your invitations or a motif. A hand-painted cake will definitely make a huge statement at your wedding, but be prepared to pay extra for this kind of cake!

Monday, 7 May 2012

Last week we had a wedding cupcake & cake pop tower order to complete. Wednesday was spent making the cake pop balls (red velvet), adding the sticks, leaving them to set & making the fondant roses to go on top of the cutting cake. Thursday was spent baking the cutting cake (French vanilla) & mini cupcakes (death by chocolate), coating the red velvet cake pops in chocolate (white chocolate tinted green & purple), icing the cutting cake and the cupcakes. Here's the finished product:

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Whoopie Pies

Today we made our first batch of whoopie pies. As we have never made them before, we were unsure as to how they would turn out, but thankfully, the end result was great and tasted even better! 
We first made the batter (which turned out to be much stiffer than we had anticipated) and followed the recipe to the letter. While the batter was cooling in the fridge, we made the marshmallow fluff, which, thanks to our good friend's recipe, was incredibly easy to make. After the baked whoopie pies cooled and the marshmallow cream filling was made, this was the end result:

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Cake Pops

Today, we successfully made a batch of chocolate coated cake pops! We have been struggling to get the coating right and decided it was best if we left the cake pops in the fridge right up until we were going to coat them. We melted the white chocolate (we like to use Cadbury's "Dream" white chocolate) in the microwave, coloured it with food colouring and left it to cool slightly. Once the chocolate had cooled, we used a spoon to coat the cold cake pops and then placed the finished cake pops on a very cold plate and put them back in the fridge. This is the finished result:
Oh, and naturally we had to have a taste testing, and I am happy to report that they tasted awesome :-)

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Very First Blog Entry

Well, this is The Purple Cake Company's very first blog! We thought we would introduce ourselves by showing you some of the cakes that we have made in the past.