There are some people who disdain at the idea of eating one year old cake and there are certainly both pros and cons to adopting this tradition but if you decide to save your cake it can give a ceremonious feel to 1 year celebrations and is great way to reminisce. (source of pic: Brides in Bloom)
The tradition involves freezing the top layer, or a certain portion of your cake. Some couples like to save enough to invite family and friends over on their one year anniversary to eat the cake. If this sounds like a tradition that you would like to do there are few things you need to consider and plan for.
What is your cake made of?
If you want to freeze your cake its best if you steer away from vanilla or chocolate based cakes and consider fruit cake. Fruit cake is most likely to remain fresh and taste good after a year. Although other types of cake can go the distance, for example a friend had a cheesecake that lasted, it is suggested by most bakers that you stick to fruit cake. You should ensure that there is fat in your cake and cake products as fat will help to lock in the moisture of the cake. If your cake is cream filled you are probably better off not freezing your cake at all. Additionally cakes without icing tend to last longer than iced cakes.
Two Tastes One Cake?
Depending on the style of your cake, you could consider only have the top layer as a fruit cake and the rest of the cake in a flavour of your choice. This would enable you to save the top layer (being fruit cake it would remain fresh) but also be able to eat a tantalizing butter cream cake on the night.
Don’t Like Fruit Cake?
Some people, myself included, are not too keen on fruit cake, even in the smallest portions. If you cant resist having a delicious butter cream or chocolate filled cake but still want to take part in the tradition of eating your cake on an anniversary you could consider saving your wedding cake for your 1 month anniversary. This is still a special day which most couples celebrate and in this way you can have the tradition and eat your (yummy) cake too
How to Freeze Your Cake
If you are considering saving your cake, make sure you freeze it correctly, otherwise all your efforts might be in vain.
There are a number of things that could go wrong when your saving the cake including the food going off firstly but also the “burning” of the cake. This occurs when the cake freezes and forms into ice crystals which burn into cake and make the cake inedible. There is also the issue of bacteria. The icing on wedding cakes is normally fine to be frozen but be wary of icing which contains products such as egg and cream that is cooked as this can go off quite easily.
It has been suggested to harden your icing you first place your cake in the freezer without any wrapping for a couple of hours till the icing is hard and then commence the wrapping process. The way in which you wrap your cake should be to prevent condensation. You should get wrapping that is moisture proof. Good ways to preserve your cake is to wrap in a saran wrap covered with a few freezer bags. Wrapping your cake in greaseproof paper, foil and some freezer bags is another alternative. Consider using freezer ziplock bags. When you wrap your cake try to wrap it tightly, to ensure that there are no air bubbles in the wrapping, where condensation and icicles can form. Your aim is to keep your cake air tight.
Once you have wrapped your cake place it into a box. If you can, place your cake in a non defrosting freezer.
If you don’t want your defrosted cake to turn soggy, defrost your cake by pulling it out of the freezer and into the fridge before you let it stand, rather than taking the cake straight from the freezer to the kitchen bench. Alternatively you can thaw your cake out in front of a cool fan so the cake sweats out and does not become soggy. The goal is to not thaw out your cake quickly as this can ruin the taste.
Will all things being said you must remember that you are eating food that is a year old so there is no guarantee as to the taste. I have heard conflicting reports over what one year old wedding cake tastes like, some say it tastes just as good whilst other brides have had to throw their cake out. If you freeze your cake correctly it should still maintain its flavour
Re-create your cake
If eating one year old cake doesn’t sit well with you then you could consider getting your cake maker to recreate a smaller version of wedding cake for your one year anniversary. There are some cake shops which add this into their cake packages so keep an eye out for it or perhaps ask for it be added to your package.
fruitcake, with its icing, can be frozen for more than a year if it is well wrapped; believe it or not, we ate some of ours a few days ago, for our 40th wedding anniversary- and it was good – was even better after adding a few drops of rum to make it even more moist.