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asked March 16th 2018

First Wedding cake tasting

Hi,

Today was bittersweet for me. It was my first wedding cake tasting event. I followed Paul's instructions by going the extra mile to wow the clients. I had the flavours set and ready to prepare. I had made them lots of times.

Although my home was robbed on Tuesday in the early hours of the morning, I pushed through to have a successful tasting with the bride and groom today Friday. Getting robbed while your family was sleeping and you were up baking would shake anyone to the core.

I pulled out all the stops today and I was so grateful for Paul's guidance on how to conduct a successful wedding cake tasting. I dont know what I would have done without it.

My only disappointment was that the meringue was too soft and so made a mess as I tried to cut the cakes to share to the couple. I was embarrassed. The meringue sprouted water upon resting at room temperature. I had done a blueberry meringue and I used dried blueberries which I processed in the food processor. It became watery at room temp and "bled" into the lemon cake. It was also very sweet and looked curdled. I tried rewhipping it but nothing changed. I also made 2 flavours of pastry cream for which i think it was too thick in the end. I was trying not to have it to watery. I wasnt sure of the correct consistency. Today was a normal hot day and I took precaution to keep the cakes cool.

I made different flavour sponge cakes to compliment the fillings. As I made the last 2 cakes I added shredded coconuts to the batter after folding in the egg white. This I think was a big mistake bec although it came out of the oven fine, once it cooled it had a very odd shape. I didnt realize how tough it had become until I was plating this morning. By then it was too late to do over. I had made a schedule for this week to get things done, but lost almost 2 days because of the burglary and trauma of it all.

What hurt me the most is when the groom remarked to the bride that there wasnt any "wow factor" during the tasting. They sampled 4 cakes with complimentary fillings and meringue. All my enthusiasm and confidence sank through the floor. Through it all, I remained composed and professional, but I just wanted to die. I had really done my absolute best and had stayed up all night literally (going to bed as 5:20 am) to make sure things were perfect and I was prepared. I had my cake contract, order forms, communication emails, champagne, water, etc. I arrived early to set up.

Although my set up and preparation was great, the cakes and meringue failed me because of a lack of knowledge. How can I make this work without the proper knowledge? Although I would love to attend culinary school I cannot afford it right now. Its truly heartbreaking. I will have a good cry tonight and pick myself up tomorrow and push forward.

Mag

PS. On top of all that, I was out of storage on my phone so couldnt take any pictures of the setup.

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Hi Mag

I'm so sad and so sorry to read that you were burgled whilst you and your family slept. This is more than enough trauma to destroy confidence in humankind without the additional stress of a wedding cake tasting not going to plan. It shows your determination of character for having continued with the tasting in a composed and professional manner despite the hurt and anger you must have been feeling. It takes true grit and strength to have achieved what you did. What ever has happened has happened with the tasting. You did more than your very best in extremely emotional circumstances which were beyond your control. Easier said than done, please try and move on from the tasting and don't allow this couple to strangle your enthusiasam xx. Not everyone is like them!
Let yourself heal from the shock, fear and anger of the burglary. Get your head straight and then start working on some simple but effective recipes. I find things go drastically wrong when I try to over please people. By using simple recipes which can be built upon, you will have more time to perfect the end product . Another tip is never to offer anything which hasn't been tried and tested by you several times over. This way you will be able to produce your cakes and desserts in the knowlege that the recipes work and are stable. You'll look back on this experience as a terrible time in your life. However, because you are who you are, you will have learned from the experience and you'll definitely be stronger as a result.

xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

I've had some hellish baking moments too but not teamed up with a burglary (although I know what it's like to have a break in!). I will think of you and wish you a speedy recovery from this dreadful ordeal. Please come and post at any time if you need support. xx
Oh! don't worry about the set up pictures, you will have many, many more beautiful images to share as soon as you are strong again. xoxo

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Hi Mag,

I totally agree with everything said by Madeitwithlove. The two experiences are both awful in different ways but just like not everyone is a burglar, not every customer will react in that way.
The best thing you can do is put it down to experience and learn from the whole experience, it will give you a story in years to come just as Paul reflects on some bad customer experiences to this day, but he can do it now with a smile 🙂

Brush down, take the time to recover from the burglary, don't let them beat you!

If you are worried about your cakes then your friends and family will surely tell you so don't let one opinion get to you.

Take care and come back stronger, David 🙂

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Thank you both madeitwithlove and David for the encouraging words.

I am back to work and feeling like my old self again. I reflected on last week and concluded that I did a great job under the circumstances. The client sent me a message to say that I was very professional and that she felt at ease with having me do the wedding cake and was looking forward to it. That helped too but I was already on my way to recovery.

Thanks for the love and support of this group. Now onto my next cake project.
Mag.

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