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Nervous about Delivering Cake in Heat Tomorrow

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

AHHH!!! I need some advice. I'm scheduled to deliver a three-tier fondant covered (I use ganache under fondant) cake tomorrow at 3:30pm. The wedding is in a barn that does not have air conditioning. I just checked the weather report and it looks like it will be around 94 degrees and 39% humidity when I deliver it. The bride mentioned that there was a plan to place a fan near the cake. The cake cutting isn't until 7:45 pm, problem is that the ceremony is in the same location as the reception. AND there isn't an indoor location to keep the cake so having it presented before the cake cutting isn't possible. 


I'm trying to think of what I could do before I deliver it to make sure it doesn't fall apart. Right now, the cake is stacked on my counter at the shop with the air conditioning on. I'm thinking that I would freeze it for an hour or two, boxed up of course. But I've never had a cake in my freezer. My refrigerator does run very wet, to the point of making fondant sticky. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!

 

Ali 

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post #2 of 18

This might be a little late, but I'm I''m doing cakes at 3 in afternoon soon. chances are it wlll be very hot. I will be boxing up cakes straight from the  frig and placing into coolers with blue ice all around. We are friends with people getting married and don't know if  you are  as well. I would ask them and kind of tell them the cakes will melt especially in a barn. Maybe she would let you keep them in coolers and wait till the last min to set it out. You might have to unstack but there again you probably know more than me. I also requested for cakes to not be stacked. too much pressure and time out of the cooler to do finishing  touches when its that hot. 

I"m slow though LOL

Hope this helps.

post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 

I wish I could set-them out at the last minute but the ceremony starts at 4:30 and guests will probably start arriving at 4 or 4:15 so it wouldn't be delayed much. The cake is doweled pretty well so I don't think I could unstack them without damaging the cake. 

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post #4 of 18

Surely there is a house near by? maybe they  would let you keep it in there until time ?

sometimes they need to give and take because they don't understand what all is envolved and how fragile cakes are in the heat. It's not really in there planning icon_confused.gif

post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 

I'm sure there's a house nearby but I doubt anyone who actually is going to be at the wedding lives that close. The barn is on a historical park. I'm just trying to see if there is something I can do on my end to have the cake come to a proper temperature before it is served. I do have it in my contract that the temperature near the cake should be no higher than 72 degrees and that I can't be responsible for any damage due to heat. But I still don't want the cake to be too soft to cut. 

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post #6 of 18

Nothing at this point will keep a cake from melting if it sits out for 3+ hours in heat and humidity.  The only thing that will save the cake is if you make a "presentation" delivery.  Deliver it just before they want to serve it.  I would use a cart and wheel the cake in about 30 minutes before the scheduled cutting time.  A little fanfare and dramatic presentation might be part of the reception.

I have a fast rule that if it is going to be over 90 degrees, I do not deliver cake until 30 minutes before the ceremony.  This seems like a long time to wait to cut the cake, even if they are having a sit-down reception it shouldn't take that long before they cut the cake.
 

Making life sweet!

Lindas Just Desserts

Inspected and licensed commercial kitchen
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Making life sweet!

Lindas Just Desserts

Inspected and licensed commercial kitchen
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post #7 of 18
I feel for you this past New Years I did a tipsy turvy 4 tier for a friends wedding I'm in Australia and our summers are HOT well of course it hit the hottests day on record for the year! 46 degrees celcius (about 115 F) and the cake was on a table sitting in direct sunlight all day. There was nothing I could do about it and it was an outdoor wedding on a property so nowhere else to put the cake. After a few hours (before the reception had even started) the cake couldn't take it anymore and one side of the cake just slid off. I was horrified! Thank god she was a friend and understood it was out of my control. It literally started to melt!
post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 

I barely slept last night being so nervous about this cake. I contacted the planner last night. They were at the venue yesterday and she said it was sweltering. There are fans available but that wouldn't help the cake in 90 degree weather. Apparently, the venue won't allow cars through the gate passed 3:30 (I'm not entirely sure how the guests get through then) but she is going to try to see if they would let me in at 4. The ceremony starts at 4:30, reception at 6 and cake cutting at 7:45. I'm going to stress to her that I can't in good conscious deliver the cake if it will sit out for 3 hours. I know it isn't ideal to have the cake presented instead of sitting out for everyone to see but I would rather deal with that than have no one eat the cake because its too hot. I'm still going to chill the cake and transport it with dry ice, regardless of when I deliver the cake. I hardly have to deal with heat issues-just one other cake last year was delivered outdoors in high 80 degree heat. My business partner delivered the cake and stressed that it couldn't be left out for very long (it was a birthday party so it could have been cut early). They had it out for two hours and she said it was too soft and no one ate it. Gee I wonder why... 

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post #9 of 18
Oh gosh!! I hope everything goes well for you.
post #10 of 18

You MUST, MUST MUST let the bride know that you are NOT responsible for anything that happens to a cake left in a hot environment after you deliver it.  It was THEIR choice to have the wedding where they did.  Good grief!   Do what you can but you can only do so much.  The good news is that a really cold cake will take at least a little while to thoroughly come to room temp.  You'll probably have an hour or two before problems occur.  Good luck but CYA!!   Can you have someone sign off on the cake when you deliver?
 

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Then plug me back in.  See if that works!

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If I am ever on life support, unplug me...

Then plug me back in.  See if that works!

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post #11 of 18

I don't understand the appeal of having all your guests battle bugs and the heat so you can be married under an open sky.  At least choose a venue with an indoor reception area.

 

Anyway, this problem seems to come up a lot, and if there are any engineers out there, an invention is just waiting to be developed.  You know those large clear cake delivery boxes?  Someone needs to design one that has a gel cooling plate on the bottom, along with reflective sides, that could stand a couple hours in the heat before being opened and served at this type of venue.

 

Liz

Follow me on my Twitter handle: @Sugar_Iowa

Or on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SugarFineBakedGoodsAndConfections

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Follow me on my Twitter handle: @Sugar_Iowa

Or on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SugarFineBakedGoodsAndConfections

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post #12 of 18
You should copyright that liz!!
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by liz at sugar View Post

I don't understand the appeal of having all your guests battle bugs and the heat so you can be married under an open sky.  At least choose a venue with an indoor reception area.

Anyway, this problem seems to come up a lot, and if there are any engineers out there, an invention is just waiting to be developed.  You know those large clear cake delivery boxes?  Someone needs to design one that has a gel cooling plate on the bottom, along with reflective sides, that could stand a couple hours in the heat before being opened and served at this type of venue.

Liz
Hmmm.... I will share what I did, but I want it referred to as "the annabakescakes outdoor reception insulation method" when sharing icon_wink.gif I used a card board box, (18"x18"x24")the same size as the base the cake sat on, and tall enough to not squish the top of the cake and closed one end with box tape, and cut the flaps off the other side, so it was open ended. Then I got some sheets of ice pack bubbles, you get them on amazon for $10 a sheet, and waterproof tape. before freezing the bubbles, i added tape flaps to them and punched some holes in them with my hole punch, making sure not to pierce the bubble! And then I got some of those little brass jobbies that look like a thumbtack, with two legs that you open wide to hold papers together, (they are built into some large envelops) and attached the ice packs all over the OUTSIDE of the box. Freeze for a couple days. It also helps if you don't tape the top together until you take it out, if you don't have the freezer space.

I froze the cake for an hour and half (I was running a half hour late) and set the cake in the cake transport box I have (like the one from the CalJava you tube video ) and took my ice box out of the freezer and wrapped it in 5 layers of heavy duty foil. I did this as neatly as possible so it wouldn't look crazy and rigged up.

After I set up the cake at the venue, I slid my aluminum foil ice box over it. It looked so stupid! But it sat there for 3 hours in 85° F weather and looked great when they pulled it off after the guests arrived but before the bride and groom got there. The cake was still chilly, and they served it an hour later, in perfect condition.

I didn't take pictures because I was winging it, and charged the bride $50 for the box, and the venue threw it away. It was worth $50 in materials, and $30 in labor, lol. It would be something to charge for or get a deposit for and have returned. It worked great!
Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #14 of 18

The Sugar Lab, I hope you will get this with time to possibly help you.  Years ago, I had a delivery van with no ac and in the heat of summer.  On cc someone suggested packing and boxing cakes with dry ice.  I used that method and it was awesome.  I delivered cakes to events and parties where the temp was well over 100 degrees.

 

Here is what I did.  Box your cake.  Use a large moving box in your case that has been cut and can be taped to open from the side.

 

Take another box just slightly larger and taller than the one the cake is in.  In the bottom place enough dry ice (in a plastic bag) to fill the bottom of the box.  Place a board or something over it to keep the cake level.  Close everything up and tape it shut.  The op of that thread said to cover the whole thing in another plastic bag.  You may just have to cut and tape bags together for your cake.

 

The dry ice method works as a mini fridge and believe me your cake will be great.  It will hold for up to 5 hours.  So you can get onto the property at the designated time,  I would not unpack the cake until close to serving time.  Great idea of having a presentation entrance for it.

 

Wishing you the best, keep us posted.

Virginia 323.253.8213
www.urbanainez.com
He is the man of my dreams, my prince; He gives me the desires of my heart, He completes me. His name is Jesus
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Virginia 323.253.8213
www.urbanainez.com
He is the man of my dreams, my prince; He gives me the desires of my heart, He completes me. His name is Jesus
Reply
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Annabakescakes View Post


Hmmm.... I will share what I did, but I want it referred to as "the annabakescakes outdoor reception insulation method" when sharing icon_wink.gif I used a card board box, (18"x18"x24")the same size as the base the cake sat on, and tall enough to not squish the top of the cake and closed one end with box tape, and cut the flaps off the other side, so it was open ended. Then I got some sheets of ice pack bubbles, you get them on amazon for $10 a sheet, and waterproof tape. before freezing the bubbles, i added tape flaps to them and punched some holes in them with my hole punch, making sure not to pierce the bubble! And then I got some of those little brass jobbies that look like a thumbtack, with two legs that you open wide to hold papers together, (they are built into some large envelops) and attached the ice packs all over the OUTSIDE of the box. Freeze for a couple days. It also helps if you don't tape the top together until you take it out, if you don't have the freezer space.

I froze the cake for an hour and half (I was running a half hour late) and set the cake in the cake transport box I have (like the one from the CalJava you tube video ) and took my ice box out of the freezer and wrapped it in 5 layers of heavy duty foil. I did this as neatly as possible so it wouldn't look crazy and rigged up.

After I set up the cake at the venue, I slid my aluminum foil ice box over it. It looked so stupid! But it sat there for 3 hours in 85° F weather and looked great when they pulled it off after the guests arrived but before the bride and groom got there. The cake was still chilly, and they served it an hour later, in perfect condition.

I didn't take pictures because I was winging it, and charged the bride $50 for the box, and the venue threw it away. It was worth $50 in materials, and $30 in labor, lol. It would be something to charge for or get a deposit for and have returned. It worked great!

Anna, this is brilliant. I am filing it away for future reference. I wish I had known about it a couple of weeks ago. I had a wedding planner who insisted on picking up a cake because her client didn't want to pay my delivery fee (looong story). I could have offered her a version your box for 1/3 of what the delivery would have cost.

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