How to Care for your Cake
Every decorator will tell you that transporting cake and storing it until party time is a challenging aspect of our business. By the time they’ve boxed your cake, they've moved it, photographed it, jiggled it, and given it their stamp of approval for travel.
Once your cake leaves your baker's care, they are no longer responsible for any damages that occur, in transport or in your home. If you have specific questions about the care of your details, please ask.
1. Before leaving, please look it over carefully to make sure all details and spelling are correct. Minor corrections can usually be made before you leave.
2. Place both hands under the board of your cake to distribute the weight evenly when carrying. The corrugated cake boards can flex and bend if not fully supported, causing the cake to torque and leaving cracks in buttercream and in fondant.
3. Today’s cake boxes are not sturdy things…please be careful not to squeeze the sides into your cake’s pretty buttercream borders.
4. Please arrive in a vehicle with space large enough to carry your custom cake.
a. Large custom cakes may not include a box for transport or may be in an open box without a lid.
5. Transport your cake safely.
a. Place cakes in the flattest part of your vehicle: floorboard or SUV flat bed space is best. Your seats are not a good location. Most have some slope to them, and all it takes is a few degrees of slope combined with roads, curves, and hills to cause damage.
b. Be sure items are not stacked around your cake that can fall or slide into your box.
c. Pets and children are devious…especially when the scent of fresh buttercream surrounds them. They can’t help it. :)
6. Go DIRECTLY to your cake's final destination. Your decorations are made with creamed butter! Every little bump, every little curve, every stop and go affects the solidity of your cake. In our years of delivering, we've seen elements slide off, tip off, lean, and literally leap off the cakes while transporting. Warm buttercream can and will slide down the sides of your cake, especially if they have heavy decorations or thick buttercream designs. Reduce the risk by going straight home with your cake.
7. If traveling long distances with your cake, let us know so we can chill it before you pick it up. Pop the cake into the refrigerator for an hour or so on arrival to firm everything back up again.
8. Be sure your cake is not near a floorboard heater or in direct sunlight. Cakes need to stay below 72 degrees to avoid melting. 65 degrees is even better. Never leave them in an un-air-conditioned car. Direct sun through glass is also bad.
9. When determining the placement of your cake at the event venue, keep it out of direct sunlight and avoid increased temperatures near windows. It is best not to place your cake on the westerly side of a windowed building or pavilion where the setting sun might hit it later in the day or warm up that side of the building. Not being mindful of these details could cause the buttercream decorations on your cake to melt while no one is watching. The cake needs to stay below 72 degrees.
10. Some elements of your cake should not be refrigerated or frozen for long periods of time: chocolate, fondant, and gum-paste. They draw moisture in the cool conditions of the refrigerator, causing condensation and drippiness when you pull them out into the humidity.
11. Cakes that have been hand painted or airbrushed should not be refrigerated. As soon as it comes out, humidity condenses on cold cake, causing food colorings to drip and run.
12. Your cakes are best enjoyed at room temperature, but Fresh Fruit, Cream Cheese Icing, and Egg Based Fillings (pastry cream and lemon curd) should be refrigerated if being held overnight, for food safety.
13. Sculptural elements and figurines may contain wire or plastic supports, toothpicks or wooden skewers for support. Please ask about placement of these items before serving to small children.
14. Fluorescent Lights and Daylight can fade the color of your decorations, especially items colored in pinks and purples. The fading doesn't happen over a matter of days...it can happen in just a few hours.
15. Many local bakers offer delivery services, for a fee, with touch ups done on arrival.
16. Most delivered cakes are refrigerated for as long as possible before making the trip. This definitely reduces our stress and worry of buttercream and decorations sliding down the edges of your cake. On arrival, your cake may be quite cool. If you prefer to serve your cake at room temperature, please let your baker know so they can deliver earlier and allow your cake time to come to temperature in it's new home. (Trust us...Chilled cakes are much prettier than melted cakes.)
17. If your party is postponed a couple of days, you can preserve your cake by completely wrapping the boxed cake with cling film/saran wrap and then placing your boxed cake into the refrigerator. (The saran wrap will help reduce condensation later when bringing it back to room temperature.) If the party is postponed longer, you can place your wrapped box into the freezer for about a week. 24 hours before the party, bring the cake to room temperature, but keep the boxed cake wrapped in the cling wrap. This should help reduce condensation.