It's that time of year again…the Great British Bake Off is back!
To celebrate the return of soggy bottoms and star bakers we held our very own competition, The Great CHWV Cake Off to use its official name, to determine who amongst us had the baking prowess to create a real showstopper. The theme was, of course, wedding cakes, but other than that the design was completely up to each contestant.
As well as being a lot of fun for all involved, we thought the Cake Off would be a great way to show our readers that they too can create their own wedding cakes, even if they're complete amateurs like some of our contestants. If you're thinking of getting creative in the kitchen for your big day, make sure you read 7 Top Tips for Creating an Unforgettable DIY Wedding Cake before you get started!
So onto the entrants and their stunning sponges then:
1. Sabrina – Head of Content Marketing
Sabrina's classic sponge was filled with delicious vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam, then smothered with white chocolate buttercream and decorated with a beautiful cake topper and little bouquet.
2. Kathryn – Social Media Executive
Kathryn went for a wonderful red velvet sponge cake for an untraditional wedding cake and added generous amounts of buttercream as well as gold sprinkles for a sparkling finish.
3. Kate – Assistant to Head of Sales
Kate's rustic naked cake tasted as good as it looked! Consisting of vanilla sponge, strawberry and raspberry jam and buttercream, this lovely cake was topped off with colourful summer berries and seasonal flowers.
4. Rory – Online Copywriter
This two-tiered treat is made up of vanilla sponge sandwiching vanilla buttercream and raspberry jam. It was then covered in white chocolate ganache and decorated with raspberry macarons and rose petals.
5. Lou – Web Developer/ Technician
Lou went for a decadent chocolate and blackberry sponge cake for her showstopper and decorated it with lashings of chocolate ganache, butterflies and blackberries for a summery look, presented on a clear acrylic square butterfly cake stand.
6. Lois – Accounts Assistant
This delicious carrot cake with devilishly good icing was a lovely alternative to a traditional wedding cake. The handmade bunting and bright flowers made it look great too.
7. Gemma – Creative Workflow Manager
Gemma's incredible creation consisted of raspberry and rose water sponges, smothered in fresh raspberry buttercream and topped with homemade meringues. It tasted divine!
8. Carol – Graphic Designer
Carol also decided to break away from tradition with her chocolate and Guinness wedding cake. The moist sponge was then covered in cream cheese frosting, which tasted amazing and also looked a little bit like the head on a pint of Guinness. Extra points for that!
9. Nik – Head of Creative
Nik went for a seriously summery look for his cake, with blackberry sponge, lemon cream, two meringue layers and a generous helping of summer berries and strawberry coulis. A creation that Mary Berry herself would be proud of!
10. Kat – Graphic Designer
Kat opted for the ultimate chocolatey wedding cake for her showstopper, sandwiching chocolate frosting between layers of rich chocolate sponge and encasing it all in an impressive chocolate fondant collar.
11. Charlotte – Wedding Venue Specialist
Believe it or not, this stunning, three-tiered pudding cake was both gluten and dairy free! This Mediterranean orange cake looked amazing and was topped off with an amazing chocolate and ginger ganache.
12. Jenny – Wedding Venue Specialist
Jenny went for a traditional cake with a modern twist for her bake, stacking chocolate and vanilla sponges before expertly covering with white and metallic icing.
With a dozen amazing DIY wedding cakes submitted for judging it was set to be a tricky task for Managing Director, Stuart, Head of Venue Relations, Lucy, and Finance Director, Steve (aka Paul, Mary and Sue) to pick the star baker. After much deliberating from the panel though, and much cake-eating from the entire CHWV team, the first round of scoring was over. It was then over to the public vote to crown the ultimate winner of the cake off competition.
So after a week of scrutiny from our Facebook following, the final results were in, and the winner of the Great British Bake Off CHWV Cake Off had been decided.
In third place…Sabrina!
In joint second…Nik and Jenny!
And CHWV's star baker…Kate for her amazing naked cake showstopper!
Kate received a £50 Love2Shop voucher for her award-winning cake while the other finalists each received a certificate that they'll treasure forever! Huge congratulations go out to everyone who took part, and a big thank you for making the last couple of weeks the sweetest, most cake-filled that the CHWV offices have ever seen!
Make sure you tune in to watch the Bake Off on Wednesdays and keep picking up those signature wedding cake ideas!