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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Let Them Eat Cake


By Guest Blogger, Heather Bjork

“Let Them Eat Cake” ~ Marie Antoinette

Who doesn’t love a good cake??? I’ll never forget when my son was turning five and I asked him what he wanted to do for his party. His response, “I don’t know.” I asked him how many kids he’d like to invite. His response, “I’m not sure.” Then his face brightened and he looked at me and asked, “Mom, can I get one of those cool Star Wars cakes for my birthday?” I agreed and one of my most vivid memories from that party to this day was how the party guests’ tongues had turned black from eating the black frosting!

So many choices….what flavor? What theme? How large? Cupcakes or sheet cake? Flavor of cake? Flavor of frosting? Filling or not? Ice cream or traditional? I have avoided cupcakes at most parties because of my friends that are teachers that will tell you that with cupcakes, so many kids just lick the frosting off and never even touch the cake part of the cupcake.

The basic cake options are: white, marble and chocolate. The basic frosting choices are butter cream or whipped cream (I am personally partial to the sugary taste that is the butter cream.). However you can also get your cake filled with coconut, strawberry, berry bream or lemon (Lowe’s Foods) or get an ice cream or frozen yogurt cake (Beriyo, Carvel, or Baskin-Robbins). You can also get some unique fillings and flavors when you choose to have a custom cake, which we will discuss more below.

To make life a little easier for all of us busy parents, I did some research & collected pricing on traditional cakes from different resources around the Triad.

Least expensive traditional cake: Food Lion ($ 13.99 for 1/4 sheet, $ 24.99 for 1/2 sheet), Wal-Mart SuperCenter ($ 14.48 for 1/4 sheet, $ 24.48 for 1/2 sheet), and the best bang for your buck was Costco ($16.99 for 1/2 sheet)

*** You can save an additional $ 2 off the price by either ordering or picking up your cake on a Thursday at Food Lion.***
Least expensive ice cream cake: Beriyo ($ 21.99 feeds 10-15 or $ 32.99 feeds 18-25)

It would be a wise idea with ice cream cakes to look at the sizes yourself. Several of the cakes had a range of 5-8 pieces in terms of how many people it would feed. Being Italian, I tend to err on serving slightly larger pieces than smaller pieces so I usually err on having slightly more pieces than I think I will need. Frequently some siblings will show up that was not included in your child count so the extra cake comes in handy when this occurs.

Now we'll move on to the oh-so-delicious custom and specialty cakes. If you really want an exotic cake, you can choose from an array of tantalizing flavors at Maxie B’s in Greensboro, where they offer cakes broken into the following categories: chocolate layer cakes, pound cakes, fruity cakes, caramel cakes or seasonal selections. You've also got Dewey's in Winston-Salem, where you may want to order their famous pink lemonade cake! We also love Ketchie Creek in Mocksville for some of the most unique and delectable cakes around. One more favorite is Delicious Bakery in Greensboro. The name says it all.

Another option to consider is to hire an independent cake designer. Marisa Schaefer (marisa.schaefer@yahoo.com, 336-516-4845) services the Burlington and Greensboro areas. She bakes and decorates delicious cakes with any theme of your choosing, at affordable prices. Allison Green (336-692-2558, agreen200@yahoo.com) in Winston-Salem, can also whip up anything your mind can imagine! You'll love the photos on her website. If you are closer to the High Point/Trinity area, call Karen Harris, owner of The Icing on the Cake, Custom Cake Designs. (Karen.IcingOnTheCake@yahoo.com
336.861.9259) She makes cakes for all occasions (baby showers, anniversaries, holidays, birthdays, bridal showers, weddings etc.) as well as goodies for all holidays!

There are many other individuals that you can find under the “cake decorator” listing in the White Pages. You can also leave any of your recommendations in the comment section below.

The plus side to ordering a custom cake is that you can usually bring a napkin or invitation that the decorator can use to create a unique cake.

Regardless of what you choose, don’t forget the candles, matches, a knife, serving piece and your paper products. To capture the moment, I usually ask a friend to take pictures while I bring the cake out. That frees me to handle what needs to be done while knowing that the moments I want to capture (my child blowing out the candles, the faces of the excited guests, etc.) are preserved and not left to chance. Always bring extra batteries for your camera and/or camcorder just in case. Then be sure to take a few minutes, have a seat & enjoy some delicious birthday cake!

Submitted by Heather Bjork, mother of two children (son Kieran & daughter Kendra), who loves to eat cake!

10 comments:

Leslie said...

We have used a wide spectrum of places for our children's birthday cakes. I can agree with Delicious Bakery and Ketchie Creek for mouth-watering custom cakes. I can also tell you that if you are having a lot of people, the Costco cakes are a great way to go. They feed a ton of people and are very inexpensive. I have also ordered a Costco cake with no decoration on it and then decorated it myself to match our party's theme.

lilmama said...

Delicious, Maxie B, and Ganache (all in GSO)-YUMMO!!!

Anonymous said...

Another option for custom cakes in the Winston-Salem area is Sugar Custom Cakes. Check out some of Julie's amazing creations at http://www.sugarcustomcakes.com/.

Sarah said...

I second the comment about Julie Mullen's Sugar Custom Cakes! Her cakes are not only beautiful, but delicious! Julie made an amazing train cake for my son's second birthday as well as a beautiful cake for my grandmother's 85th birthday. She does it all! We will definitely use Sugar Custom Cakes again in the future!

Anonymous said...

Karen Harris of The Icing on the Cake is amazing! She can do anything- just give her a picture and she can whip it up! You can contact her to view her portfolio. It is endless! And all of her stuff is DELICIOUS!

Kristie said...

All of those places sound great! For the last 3 years I have made home made 'cookie cakes' for my kids. For less than $5 per 'cake' I can feed almost 60 kids (when I take their classes a birthday treat). We have 3 children who celebrate their birthday on the same day and we want them to have their own cake without breaking the bank - this is the way to go for us. The kids love picking out their theme each year and they really get into helping me decorate them. Adults AND kids love the giant cookies (only 3 ingredients!) We usually have 2 chocolate chip cookie cakes and one sugar cookie cake. Last year we had a High School Musical theme, a Lego theme and a racetrack theme. Fun to make and easy too!

Mommy said...

Cakes by Kim are also amazing! She did cakes and cupcakes for my girls birthday party and they were works of art! http://www.cakesbykimnc.com just take a look at the detail! And they were so yummy!!!!

MichelleW said...

Another option is the take the Wilton cake decorating class at Michael's or AC Moore and do them yourself at home. My daughter loved watching the doll cake she had requested all come together. Then couldn't wait to show everyone what she had "helped" make.

Anonymous said...

I love the Yummy Goodness Bake Shoppe's Cakeballs on a stick. They are great for parties for adults and little kids. They are so easy to pop in your mouth and so satisfying. I really liked how they had so many flavors to choose from.

MrsAshley said...

I love baking & decorating elaborate cakes and have done it as a small business. Any ideas on reaching out to the community? I would love advice!

Thanks!

Ashley
Beauty4Moms.blogspot.com

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