Cakes

Fancied This Fall

After a long, hot summer, fall weather is finally arrived in the southeast. Halloween parties and the holidays are just around the corner. As families gather and fall feasts take center stage, classic desserts and traditional flavors add warmth to your events and help create this year’s memories.

Here are some traditional treats fancied this fall season.

What’s better than cheesecake? Pumpkin cheesecake… with a pumpkin mousse and a chocolate drizzle.  If you haven’t tried it yet, you definitely should.

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin-spice loaf with a sugar glaze, topped with drizzle and pecans, made from scratch seasonally… get yours while it’s available.

Butter Pecan Gourmet Cupcake

Another seasonal favorite, our butter pecan sponge cake with chopped pecans, sweetened milk buttercream icing, and a whole pecan garnish is the perfect bite of fall or order a dozen for the whole crew.

Spiced Caramel Apple Cupcake

Spice Cake, caramel, with apple pie filling, apple infused buttercream with caramel drizzle and chopped pecan drizzle.

Halloween Highlight: No Bones About It

Bring a little spooky with our unique No Bones About It cupcake. Topped with cookie grave dirt and white chocolate skeleton pieces.  Boo!

Pumpkin Spice Halvsie

If you can’t get enough pumpkin spice this season, here is one more treat full of seasonal spice perfect for your family or office to share. Pumpkin spice cake with pumpkin crème filling and pumpkin infused whipped topping. Topped with a caramel drizzle garnish, this is one delicious fall treat.

You’re sure to find at least one delicious dessert to fancy this fall.  Enjoy the season’s best.

A Dozen Delicious Days in October

October is National Family History Month. It’s also filled with many delicious days to celebrate!  We just had to share a few of them with you. Here are a dozen delicious dessert days in October.

1. National Homemade Cookies Day – October 1st

Involve the whole family in a new baking tradition. Grab our Schackrutor cookie recipe, and make a back of beautiful checkerboard cookies at home.  While you wait for them to bake, play a game of checkers and share memories.  If you’re not up to making cookies from scratch, we’ll help you cheat with some fresh-baked cookies from American Dream Cakes Bakery.

 4. National Pumpkin Seed Day – October 3rd

The hallmark symbol of the fall season, pumpkins are everywhere from your local farmer’s market to the front porch.  Did you know that pumpkins must be planted by July 4 to be ready for fall time harvest? October 3rd is a great day to carve your pumpkin and get to those seeds! Learn more about creative ways to use pumpkins this season.

3. Do Something Nice Day – October 5th

Everyone has had one of “those” days.  During rough times, even the smallest gestures can make a huge difference.  Do Something Nice Day offers a chance to be intentional in doing something nice for others. A meaningful gesture can be as simple as a kind word, small note or lending a hand. Of course, grabbing coffee and cookies for your coworkers is nice, too!

4. National Cake Decorating Day – October 10th

Professional cake decorating is like any artistic, creative endeavor.  Design and technical processes vary depending upon the purpose and details desired. Try your hand at decorating a cake, or join us for a behind the scenes look as our cake creation process is explained.

5. National Dessert Day – October 14th

National Dessert Day is the perfect excuse to pick up a sweet treat from your favorite bakery. Take a moment today to celebrate your favorite cookie, cupcake, pies, pastry or other dessert. Drop in to American Dream and celebrate with us. We’ve got plenty to choose from! #nationaldessertday

6. National Chocolate Cupcake Day – October 18th

Chocolate is always a favorite. On October 18th, you have the perfect excuse for an extra chocolate cupcake!  Enjoy our original, moist chocolate cupcake one of our gourmet cupcake options like the Choc-o-holic or Chocolate Covered Strawberry.  Yum.

 

7. National Sweetest Day – October 20th

National Sweetest Day was originally celebrated as Candy Day in 1916.  It’s evolved over time and now the day is set aside to encourage small acts of kindness to inspire others. Share your sweetest moment with someone you love.

8. National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day – October 21st

In the fall, the only thing better than cheesecake is pumpkin cheesecake! Savor October 21st with a slice of delicious Pumpkin Cheesecake.  Trust us, your friends will be jealous.

9. National Boston Crème Pie Day – October 23rd

Okay, Boston Crème Pie isn’t really a “pie” at all, but who cares?!  October 23rd is a day dedicated to digging into our delicious butter sponge cake filled with vanilla custard and topped with chocolate ganache.

Savor National Boston Crème Pie Day with your friends at American Dream Cakes.

10. National Pumpkin Day – October 26th

Fruit or vegetable? A fruit without a sweet taste is commonly accepted as a vegetable, but regardless where you sit on this debate, pumpkin is an October favorite flavor. A whopping 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins are produced in America. Pick up your pumpkin pie on #nationalpumpkinday!

11. National Chocolate Day – October 28th

Chocolate. Oh, sweet chocolate. Doesn’t it seem like chocolate should have more than one national day? Well, it does! According to U.S. National Confectioners Association, there are four chocolate holidays: July 7, October 28, December 29 and International Chocolate Day, Sept 13. #NationalChocolateDay  Enjoy!

12. National Caramel Apple Day/ Halloween – October 31st

Did you know that National Caramel Apple day is celebrated annually on October 31?  Indulge in a nostalgic treat while you guide the kids around the neighborhood trick or treating.

Have a Happy and Safe Halloween from your friends at American Dream Cakes.

FALL WEDDING TRENDS

Fall brides find inspiration in crisp autumn evenings, warm fires and nature-inspired elements for planning their wedding.

Let’s take a look at some of this fall’s wedding trends.

FALL BEACH WEDDINGS:

At first thought, beach weddings seem to fit only in summer. However, early fall is an optimal time for a beach wedding. It pairs warm sunshine with cool wisps of autumn air. Combining ocean air blue with warm autumn tones creates fall beach vibe harmony.

Accent the beachy-feel with elements like edible seashells and sea stars, while connecting to fall with earthy driftwood pieces. Trendy mid-length dresses (think Audrey Hepburn style) are ideal for a beach wedding too.

(Photo by Chad Hansen for First Mate Photography Co.; Cake by Mayflour Confections) (Photo Credit Brides.com)

NAKED CAKES:

Many naked cakes are vanilla. You can go a step further. Inspired by fall flavors, this naked carrot cake topped with fall blooms captures the fall season in a cake.

(Photo Credit https://www.weddingomania.com/halloween-wedding-ideas/) (Photo Credit Weddingomania)

MATTE BLACK:

Unlike barely-there frosting, matte black cakes are trending just in time for a darker fall feel. If you love dark-colored themes, combining deep purples, reds, and a matte black cake may be the ultimate fall trend for you. Adding metallic detail designs can give the cake a regal air, while lighter colored flowers brighten darker tones.

BOHO ELEGANCE:

Seeing naked cakes everywhere, and want a unique spin? Use a chocolate cake paired with figs and berries for a boho, woodland wedding to remember.

Want a truly fall-inspired twist?  Try a deconstructed cornucopias display.  These trendy centerpieces offer a variety of seasonal fruits for guests to eat right off the table.

(Photo via http://happywedd.com/decor/20-giant-wedding-wreaths.html)/ (Photo Credit happywed.com)

OVERSIZED CIRCULAR WREATHS:

Over-sized wreaths, symbolizing unity, are the trendiest wedding backdrop this season.   Your wedding theme and style inspires how to decorate the large beauties. Fall weddings can take advantage of the season’s flowers and harvest fruits to celebrate fall harvest abundance.

GO NAKED FOR YOUR WEDDING (CAKE)

Wooing brides with laid-back charm since 2013, naked cakes have proved they are here for the long haul. Initially showcasing a bare cake layer with all the icing or fruit filling on the inside, styling variations have popped up everywhere. From multiple cake flavor tiers to more icing on the outside, giving a “peek-a-boo” look, naked cakes have evolved from laid-back trendy to simple sophistication.

Popular naked wedding cakes show yellow cake with fruit topping or a light colored icing swipe; however, options are not limited there. Gather inspiration from your wedding season, style or venue to personalize your unique cake story.

Here are ideas to help you make your naked wedding cake details unique.

MORE THAN ONE
Include more than one cake flavor in a multi-layer naked cake by choosing different flavors for each tier layer. Various cake flavors add another dimension of colors and contrast.  We’ve even seen a naked cake taken up a notch with playful confetti cake colors.  The sky’s the limit.  Be creative.

DREAMY DECADENCE
Chocolate naked cakes filled with chocolate frosting or ganache offer an indulgent option without being overpowering.

SEASONAL STYLE
Choose a seasonally inspired cake flavor like carrot cake, or choose fall-friendly fruits to add the perfect little element of “extra.”

FRESH & FUN WEDDING CAKES

Fresh and fun wedding cakes are great for informal weddings. Boho, beach or country-chic wedding styles all pull in fresh and fun options for great centerpiece cakes. Fresh fruit, bright colors, and lighter fillings allow these cakes to keep a bit of sophistication at a less formal affair.

Here are a few top choices for “Fresh and Fun” inspired wedding cake styles.

Bare Naked Cakes

As the name says, bare naked cakes show all. A light cake and filling are paired with fresh seasonal fruit to create fresh, fun with a sophisticated twist.  Not too stuffy or formal, but fully elegant, this option is a trendy style that you’ll be seeing for several years. Top your bare-naked cake with garnished layers of fresh fruit, berries, flowers or a topper of your choice.

Almost-Naked Cakes

More conservative than her bare-naked cousin, an almost-naked cake adds a thin layer of frosting.  This has the effect of sealing the cake edges a bit for freshness while allowing the cake and filling layers to show through. Showcase vibrant, in-season flowers as cake decoration or topper. This is an excellent choice for brides who want an event that’s laid-back with a cake that still feels a little fancy.

Uniquely Fresh & Fun

Perhaps it’s fully frosted or wrapped in fondant, but your wedding cake can be uniquely “fresh and fun” by being uniquely “YOU!”  Not all wedding cakes are towering 4-tiers and traditional.  Opt for a cake that fits your theme and personality – down to the unique filing flavor and decorations.  Is it bright and colorful?  Seasonally themed?  Perhaps your uniquely fresh & fun cake is more like a cake topper and cupcakes!

At American Dream Cakes, our cake designers work with you to create a cake that compliments your wedding season, style, and more. You can order a Tastings Kit on Fridays and Saturdays, to sample 5-6 different cake and filling flavors (some seasonal availability), and buttercream to help you decide on your favorite combination.

Marrying a Marine: 3 Wedding Traditions Brides Can Expect

Welcome to the Marine Corps.

Many brides include traditions from their families’ religious or cultural background in their wedding ceremonies.  The United States Marine Corps “family” welcomes a bride with wedding traditions unique to the history of the Marine Corps.  Marrying into this family means you’ll probably learn some new jargon and get used to a lot of acronyms.  You may expect some sacrifices like time apart or relocations.  But as in any family, marrying into the USMC family means you’re welcomed with traditional displays of affection unique to the Corps.

Here are three unique Marine Corps ceremonial traditions, their history, and what to expect as the bride.

  1. Arch of Swords: A select group of six to eight Marines stands on either side of the wedding exit to “shelter the bride” as she and the groom walk out. Traditionally, it represents the USMC’s pledge of fidelity to the couple. The selected Marines cannot be groomsmen in the wedding, but they can escort guests of honor during the ceremony.
  2. Spanking the Spouse: Spanking the spouse is a tradition representing a welcoming of the bride into the USMC family. As the couple near the end Arch of Swords, they are blocked by the last two Marine’s swords.  A designated Marine shouts, “Give this Marine a Kiss.”  After they kiss, swords are raised, the couple is announced and they move forward together. When the bride moves forward, the lead Marine lowers his sword and gives a gentle pat on the backside saying, “Welcome to the Marine Corps Family, ma’am!” In this tradition, the lead Marine honor is similar to the best man and is a coveted honor between friends in the Corps.
  3. Cutting the Cake with Sword: If the bride or groom is an NCO in the Marine Corps, they can choose to cut their wedding cake with a sword. The groom presents the sword to the bride, places his hand over hers, and they cut the cake together.

Marine Corps Inspired Wedding Cake or Grooms Cake

Another way to include the Marine Corps traditions into the ceremony is by choosing a USMC wedding cake. If a USMC wedding cake is too much, include the Corps in a Grooms cake.

Inspired by USMC Blues Uniform, this four-layer cake is topped with white service hat and finished with the bright blues uniform pants. Middle layers display gold service uniform buttons.  Cakes can also have edible EGAs (Eagle, Globe & Anchor) or American flags, as shown in the Marine Corps-inspired cakes below.

Welcome to the Marine Corps Family, ma’am!  Contact our team for cake-design planning for your USMC wedding.

 

5 Key Factors for Custom Cake Costs

When planning a special event, from a birthday party to a wedding, a custom cake helps make lifelong memories. A fresh, custom-designed cake takes an event’s personalized feel to the next level. Custom cakes can require more time and cost more. If you want a personally inspired, custom cake that will fit your budget, here are five factors to consider while preparing for your event.

Event Size / Group Count

The longer the guest list for an event, the more cake you will need to serve at your party. You may want to consider having two flavor options for larger groups. Two or three-tier cakes can be made with various flavors to offer choices to the group. Family-friendly events can pair a custom cake with coordinating cupcakes for children.

Creative Design Work

Deciding the design details of your custom cake is exciting. When considering a specific type of theme or design, remember the more intricate designs will take more time which creates more expense. If you have a limited budget, our design pros can usually scale your design concept to a smaller size or simpler design version that will reduce detail work time.

Custom Cake Details

Part of the fun of creating a custom cake is the ability to completely tailor the design. For example, you may select a favorite specialty flavor of cake or filling. We offer traditional cake flavors such as white, yellow, and chocolate.  We also offer flavors such as almond, lemon, orange, cookies and cream, red velvet, and chipper cherry to name a few. In addition to unique cake flavors, we also offer a variety of cake fillings including buttercreams, ganache, German chocolate, fruit cremes, raspberry, seasonal fruits and more.

With a custom cake on the inside, you can coordinate your cake’s exterior presentation to your event color scheme and décor.

Budget Time Too

Each cake is made fresh and decorated just before your event. It is important to allow time to meet with a cake designer to ensure availability for your event date.  For significant events such as a wedding, we encourage you to plan six to twelve months in advance of the event date for the best results and coordination.

Transportation Arrangements

Planning cake flavors, colors and décor details to personalize your event’s memorable centerpiece is exciting. Another essential element to consider when ordering your custom cake is transportation arrangements.

We offer free delivery for three-tier or larger cakes within the city limits of Jacksonville. Other locations, depending upon the distance from the bakery, incur a delivery fee. Sunday deliveries are also charged an additional $100 to cover staffing non-traditional business hours. Two-tier cakes must be picked up at the bakery.

A custom cake creates a distinctive, memorable experience at your event.  This is a memory you’ll cherish for years to come.  Call us today to plan your next event’s custom cake design.

 

Making Father’s Day Cakes a Unique as Dad

From swimming lessons to fishing trips, Father’s Day celebrates not only our childhood hero but our biggest adventure buddy. With so many memories to celebrate, you may be asking yourself how to do something original for Dad this year? Out of the (gift) box original.

If the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, you can show your love and appreciation this Father’s Day with a custom cake that’s as original as Dad himself.  What better way to be creative, satisfy his sweet tooth and touch his heart?

Here is an easy 3 step guide to choosing Dad’s yummy, unique Father’s Day cake.

  1. Schedule Free Consultation Appointment

Each custom cake is made fresh, never frozen.  It’s easy to schedule a free consultation to discuss designs for your cake.  It’s best to plan your cake at least two weeks in advance.  The more ornate the design, the more time will be needed to plan and create it. This year, Father’s Day is June 17th.  Call us at (910) 346-2347 to talk about a cake for Dad this week.

  1. Gather a Little Inspiration

Depending on your Dad’s interests, you can gather inspiration from his hobbies or unique memories you have shared together.  You may want to highlight his favorite pastimes, such as hunting or fishing.  Has your Dad inspired health and active living in your family? How about a cake tribute to hitting the weights?

Maybe he likes tech toys or cars…  Once you have an idea for a theme, search for design inspiration in our Cake Gallery or online image search.   If you don’t have a specific look in mind, our cake designers can help.

  1. Bring it to Your Consultation

During the consultation, you can share your theme idea, inspiration pictures and more.  Our cake designers can help you personalize Dad’s cake, choose flavors and determine what size cake fits your needs for Father’s Day.

Now you can relax until it’s time to pick up your cake masterpiece for Dad.  American Dream Cakes is a professional bakery with a proven track record for custom cake design. Your freshly-made cake will be ready for pick up on the day scheduled during your consultation.

Together, we will work to make this Father’s Day a delicious memory for the books. Call (910) 346-2347 now to schedule your free consultation and reserve your spot.

Graduation Cakes – Graduation Day is Coming!

Graduation Day. A day to signify the end of a season and the beginning of a new. 15 years in the making, and they are finally reaching that exciting day to celebrate all the hard work and dedication to education. Planning the perfect graduation party takes time and organization. Let us add the perfect, tasty piece to their special day. Much like party planning, planning for a cake takes time. If you are looking to partner with American Dream Cakes, please call ahead and make an appointment to discuss the many design options for your grad’s cake.

If you’re looking to order a sheet cake, a 2-4 week notice is recommended for ordering basic designs. 1/4-sheet cakes serve 16-24. 1/2-sheet cakes serve 32-48. Full-sheet cakes serve 64-96.American Dream Cakes can place high resolution photographs on sheet cakes to personalize for the special day. Please note, professional photographs require a signed release from the photographer to place on cakes.

Don’t Forget College Grads!

Graduating from college deserves a special cake! We’ve made many over the years and enjoy making something custom for each Grad. It’s important to start early in the process of making the decisions for design and style wanted. Many cakes require weeks, sometimes months of prep work and time to get written permission to use and create copyright protected University logos, mascots etc. We bake and decorate all of our cakes fresh which limits the amount of orders we can accept for each date. It’s never too late to inquire about availability, but we recommend placing orders 2-4 weeks in advance for Basic designs and 2-4 months for tiered and sculpted cakes.

Sheet Cakes are also a great option for College grads. Make it personal with 2 & 3D fondant work. Fondant work takes a minimum of 1 week to create. The sooner you can plan and order your custom cakes, the better!

Whether it’s for your High School or College grad, American Dream Cakes can make it delicious and memorable. To schedule your cake design consultation, please contact us today!

What Goes into that Cake?

We’re often glad to receive compliments on the details of our cake designs and creations.  From custom event cakes to corporate cakes to gorgeous wedding cakes, we’ve had a lot of experience as cake artists.  What may surprise you is the level of engineering and time that are required to make the ornate flowers and detailed facades of the cakes we’ve had the privilege to create.

Here’s an inside peek at the process and the time it takes to construct a detailed custom cake.  This project was a recreation of the Fisher House, a facility that serves military families aboard Camp Lejeune during a medial crisis.  As a military family and milspouse-owned business, we were honored to complete this cake.  Here’s the low down on how long it took our team!

Every great project starts with a good consultation to determine the goals and vision for the cake, how many servings will be needed and any special requirements.

  1. Consultation with client at bakery. 1 hour.
  2. Site Visit:  Travel to the building and time to take 360-degree photos of the Fisher House including the architectural details like windows, doors, patios, landscape etc. 3-4 hours

3.  Diagram to scale: Now that we had photos of the building and its surroundings, we needed to convert that information to an accurate diagram at the size of cake that was desired. Drawing the diagram to accurate scale including the roof pitch.  1-2 hours

4. Edible printing: We downloaded and printed out all the photos of windows and doors on edible paper.  That paper is attached to fondant and then each piece is cut out individually.  2-3 hours.

5. Custom cake board: Because of the size, shape and weight of the cake, a custom cake board and templates were needed.  Creating those for the cake took about 2 hours.

6. Sculpt detail pieces: Our team made and formed all the details for the cake.  These included items like the patio trellis, wrap-around porch, brick walls, light posts, trees, etc.   4-5 hours

7. Bake cake layers that will be used to carve the final sculpted cake.  2 hours (not including clean up)


8. Carve the cake base: layers to the shape of the building template. 30 min.

9. Ice the cake in buttercream. 30 min.

10. Pattern and airbrush sides: Make brick pattern on sides of cake and airbrush colors. 30 min.

11. Stack and hand-carve the roof portion of the cake. Ice in buttercream. 2 hours.

12. Color and cover roof: Hand color fondant to match roof color. Roll out, texture and cover roof top potion of cake. 2 hours.

13. Assemble the Cake: Major components of the cake were assembled in the four steps below.  Items that were not attached to the base of the cake directly cannot be assembled until after the cake is moved to the location for the event.  These steps took about 5 hours

  • Secure roof portion to base
  • Attach all cut out windows, doors etc. to the cake.
  • Hand-cut fondant for roadway, walk way, grass etc. Attach to cake board.
  • Texture grass and other areas with buttercream.

14. Deliver cake at location 4 am and put final decorations in place. to avoid breakage during transport. – 4 hours

15. Inspect all details to ensure everything is in correct place. Take photos of finished cake. Move cake to display table. Clean up the area where we completed the final decoration steps.  1 hour.

The process to create the Fisher House cake took over 25 hours. It required 2-3 staff members working together to get it all complete, so all-in-all it took about 75-90 hours to complete.  Specialty carving skills, sculpting skills, and edible printing equipment were all required.  We also had to engineering proper supports, so the cake would not crack during transport and complete assembly at 4am on-site.

Custom created cakes take an investment of time, talent and materials.  Next time you see an amazing cake, remember it didn’t happen in an afternoon.  Many times, days of preparation go into the final results you see.  For our team, it’s worth the effort to get the details right.  Nothing compares to seeing the impact when we deliver a custom creation that our clients love.

Planning a company event? To make life easier, here a free download that contains an all-in-one corporate event guide: