Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Make Mine a Mini
Back in the day when I cooked professionally miniature food was all the rage. Our Amuse bouche, a bite size appetizer served before the meal, kept getting smaller and smaller. Dishes were garnished with micro greens, and I vividly recall having to prepare the micro herb salad for my entrees. I was more than a little familiar with mini-sizing food when Rick and I opened cakelava, and it was no surprise that the trends I had long observed in the restaurants were evident in the cake world.
We get requests somewhat regularly for miniature cakes but our schedule often prevents us from being able to make as many of these time consuming cakes as people want. People love the way they look, but don't realize the amount of labor involved in making these, so we'll demystify it.
The mini cakes with the beta fish and stripes (above) took a very long time to make. Each cake is individually iced and each stripe had to be cut out of fondant and placed by hand. Times this by 20 or more, and you have your work cut out for you. Once they are side-by-side, they take up a lot of room in the walk-in which can prevent us from taking other cakes that are stacked tall. Then there is the cost involved. It's not like buying a cupcake, where prices max out before the double digits. Ordering mini cakes is more expensive than a single cake or cupcakes.
2 or 3 tier mini cakes are even more work than single tiers. We had a bride call and wanted to order 200 mini cakes just like our pink cakes with the hearts (above), and I nearly dropped the phone. "200?" Does she think we crank these out in our Magic Mini Cake Machine? She nearly dropped the phone when I told her what that would cost. Rick made all those components by hand and tweezers were involved in the placing of items. Keeping it simple is always more economical. I like the understated elegance of the 2-tier apple green cakes with the single rose topper. It worked perfectly with the pink and green floral display and candy bar lining the table. Though not as difficult as the others, it is still labor intensive.
The bottom line is, if you're thinking more along the lines of "Make mine a Mini" than "Supersize Me", you want to order the mini cakes WAY in advance and have a generous budget to work with. Oh, and please forgive me if I drop the phone when you ask for 400 of them.
Labels: individual cakes, mini cakes, mini custom cakes, miniature cakes