Things you should be looking for when booking a cake maker
At La Belle Cake Company we often are recommended on social media posts when someone asks for details of a wedding or celebration cake maker (and for this we are very grateful); but if we are totally honest we quite often find it scary the sheer number of names that appear on these posts for recommendations. As the industry becomes more and more saturated we thought we would give consumers a little helpful guide of the basic things you should be looking for when booking a cake maker. After all, it is important to remember that you are purchasing a food product.
Obviously price is an important factor for many people and that is completely understandable but is important to note there are things that contribute to the final price that should be taken into account.
- Is the cake maker registered with enviromental health? There is absolutely nothing wrong with running a cake business from home, it’s how many great cake makers start, however the individual should be registered with environmental health and the premises on which they are preparing your cake should be inspected. You can check this information on line via the website – http://ratings.food.gov.uk/default/en-GB
2. Is the cake maker insured? It may not seem too important but there are many reasons why they should be insured. What if they are delivering your cake for you and something happens to the cake (i.e. its dropped). What if a foreign body is found in the cake by one of your guests? Obviously these are events that no one wants to happen but it is important to be prepared. It’s also worth noting that some venues will not allow cake makers to deliver unless they hold valid insurance.
3. Food hygiene certificates – for us this is a given but it is amazing to know how many cake makers start a business without undertaking basic food hygiene training
4. Full knowledge of food allergens – Following the introduction of new laws in 2013 every food producer must be able to provide full allergy information on all food produced and must provide you with documentation detailing the allergens in product. If they don’t they are breaking the law. (another reason why insurance is important)
These are an absolute minimum. They are no less then you would naturally expect when buying any other food product (i.e. a take away) so why should a cake be any different.
Now for the cake itself –
You are usually paying a premium for a bespoke handmade cake so you should expect quality. As a minimum to make a professional cake stand out from a shop bought cake you should be looking for the following –
An iced cake board. Nothing screams shop bought cake than an un iced silver cake board. As well as forming a barrier between the cake and the cake board it dramatically improves the appearance of the cake taking a good cake to a great cake. If it is a wedding cake than the cake board should be iced as standard!
Ribbon around the cake board – This is a personal pet peeve of mine especially when the cake board has been iced. When so much time and effort has gone in to the look of the cake to ribbon the edge of the cake board is the finishing touch.
Height of the cake – For a bespoke cake you should be looking at a minimum cake depth of 3inches.
A nice smooth finish – there is nothing better than a beautiful smooth cake with no lumps, bumps and dents. This is the perfect blank canvas on which to create the clients chosen design.
These, for me, are the basics you should be expecting as standard from a professional cake maker. Otherwise you may as well head straight for your nearest supermarket.
Always remember – you are the client – you have a right to expect quality and ask for more.