The astonishing rise in cake decorating has taken the entire industry by surprise, and although the craft has been around for years the strong desire for quality cakes with cutting edge design has moved consumers to want the outrageous, the unusual and exotic. It is no longer enough to add a simple rope, weave or rosette pattern finished off with a cluster of rosebuds.
The cakes of 2011 not only must swing from the rafters, it may in fact be rafters holding together a towering four foot castle. A themed cake with cartoon characters is a thing of the past; today children and adults want a cake that is so different it will woo party attendees for years to come, literally.
A recent blog post revealed some cake decorators fuming with frustration over the demands of customers all wanting to out due one another when it came to cake design and size. One of the biggest challenges involved a customer bringing in a photograph of a cake, asking the baker to replicate it using a different color scheme and doubled in size.
Everyone wants the stars, the moon and every super hero since the beginning of time.
The idea that cake can be sculpted into any shape, any size and slapped with mounds of butter-cream icing or wrapped with yards of fondant and still be amazingly delicious should be an unrealistic expectation, dare we not mention Charm City Cakes. Are cakes today only ordered to showcase the vanity of the customer?
Listening to a group of cake decorator’s in a local craft store discuss the outlandish request of customers who take no time in actually planning what the cake should look like, more less taste, offered a clear indication that expectations run high.
Cake decorating and all that goes into making spectacular visions of sweet beauty does not appear to be slowing down. We have had a taste of cake heaven, and seen the glory and grandeur of what is possible thanks to the never ending array of cake decorating competitions that lace our cable networks; plus the cost, which causes the hairs on the backs of many a baker to stand on end, since customers continue to want the most offering to pay the least.
The fact is if you want a Walmart priced cake, go to Walmart, if you want something custom baked, hire a professional cake designer. The bottom line…there are no free rides, everything cost and today it costs a lot.
It will be interesting to see where this cake decorating trend leads us and to what heights these new culinary crafters will climb, all in a quest to boldly go where no cake design has gone before.