Simon King and Dave Myers delve into the world of celebration cakes and face the challenge of making a five-tier wedding cake for Helen and Johnny in Manchester.
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Are you ready for our toughest challenge yet?
-What, the dark art of cake decoration, you mean?
We'll be criss-crossing the country in search of inspiration.
We find ourselves on a hillside reading Cake Decorating.
It all started when this dropped through the letterbox...
a wedding invitation.
Oh, er, there was something ominous at the bottom...
-and I'm Johnny, and we're getting married in a weeks time,
and we'd really like The Hairy Bikers to bake us a cake, if they possibly could.
Now, we're never ones to turn down a challenge, so here we find ourselves, bereft of inspiration,
with a pile of cake decorating books. It's a funny old world.
Well, it is. Cos the thing is the world of cakes is not as simple as it sounds.
You know, what sort of cake does she want, dude, that's the thing.
-Does she want croque en bouche, normal, does she want chocolate...
-Look at that one!
It's not a cake, it's a hat, and it's black! It's morbid.
Let's fill up our icing bags and hit the frosted trail!
-Hello, Helen, I'm Dave.
-Helen, I'm Si, how are you?
-Nice to see you, Johnny, I'm Si.
-How are you, Si?
'Helen's got an appointment to pick up her wedding dress
'so I'm going along to get a sneak preview'
'While I get down to business with Johnny.'
-Do you know what?
-I love these vans.
All my family think I'm mad spending all my money on them,
-but they're well worth it.
-Now look, Johnny,
Got to come straight with you. We are virgins
when it comes to making wedding cakes. Thing is, we're working hard.
She'll let you know if she doesn't like it, she's fussy about her cakes.
Oh, dear! If Dave doesn't get to the bottom of Helen's cakely desires, we're done for.
You've got a proper wedding dress, but again it's not conventional,
so what sort of cake do you like?
I really fancy Baked Alaska, actually, with some strawberry sauce on it.
I've just got you!
You went, "uh?"
Although you say quite traditional, I get the impression that you've got quite a sense of humour.
Oh, definitely, yes. Definitely got a sense of humour.
We'd like traditional looking cake with characters, things like that.
-So traditional, but with a Hairy Bakers twist.
It was good to meet Helen and Johnny.
Yeah, and we've finally got a vision for the cake.
So we headed back to my house on Roa Island to begin work
on our five tiers of wedding magic!
This is the perfect opportunity to use my brand new cake barrow and tool kit.
Oh, man, I feel more like Bob The Builder than a master baker.
Into this 15 kilogram mix goes very little flour, two kilos.
And this is is ordinary baking flour, it's not strong flour.
Sultanas, raisins, dates, bicarb of soda, salt, and 15 grams of mixed spice.
Now the sticky's...barley malt extra, three of,
and three of Japanese brown rice malt syrup.
Right, mate! Let's get cracking!
-You've been looking forward to this bit.
30 eggs may sound extreme, but we're making a lot of cake.
We're adding a litre of sunflower oil to keep it fresh and moist.
The magic now starts to build...
The zest of three oranges and four lemons,
and half a dozen grated carrots.
Me end's come off me zester!
Next, reconstituted pineapple and some cardamom seeds as well.
# She's getting married in the morning. #
-From this to perfection.
MUSIC: "A Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin
We're only filling the tins half full
because we don't want our cakes to be monsters once the marzipan and icing layers have been added.
Next bit, with a fruit cake of this quality and calibre,
we need to wrap it up, cos it's going to be baked for a long time
maybe about three hours, three to four hours.
So put your brown paper there... this is just going to keep that direct heat off your tin.
And then put a sheet of brown paper over the top.
We're putting them in at 140 degrees.
After the cakes have cooked, they have to be left to mature.
You can leave them for months to develop their flavour
but we've only got two days.
The marzipan will not stick to a bald cake,
so what I need to do is to paint it with hot apricot jam or
warmed marmalade, preferably rindless.
The marzipan makes a perfect base for the decorative icing to come.
So it's worth using a cake smoother to get it really smooth.
Our cakes are beginning to look the business.
Now, joking apart, the proper baker will use a spirit level.
This top has to be perfectly level.
One, two, three...
We're off to Slattery's, in Manchester,
one of the finest cake decorating schools in the North.
Slattery's is a family run business crafting top quality wedding and celebration cakes.
-Wayne and Coleen Rooney had their cake made here.
-Good enough for us!
We're having a sugar craft lesson with Karen Bowden, who's going
to initiate us into her wicked world of wedding cake decoration.
-Got you some sugar paste.
As you can see, it's quite firm and hard, so you've got to work this,
work the sugar paste, nice and smooth,
you'll know when it's finished cos it will feel almost like plasticine.
Working warms it up, making it soft enough to roll.
Looks like an Eskimo's roof!
Right, you can put your brew down.
This is Mexican paste, basically what we use to make sugar flowers.
-You can roll it out a lot thinner than sugar paste
and it dries a lot quicker, perfect, like porcelain when it dries,
-This is what you're going to make your daisies out of...
You need to get that really thin, then we can cut out the daisies.
Can you say that a bit more butch?
IN A DEEP VOICE: Daisies!
You're my girl! You're my girl!
What you're going to do is... on each petal
you're going to just gently roll all the way around, OK?
Now when you've done that, get a knife,
and you're going to make a slit in each petal.
This should keep them quiet for a while.
We're not actually decorating the cakes until the day before the wedding.
This is just another stage in their construction.
Looks like we'll be having lunch without you.
Now we've got nearly everything we need for Helen and Johnny's cake.
But ever since I sat in Johnny's camper van, I've had an idea for the centrepiece.
But we thought it might be a bit much for our newly acquired icing skills.
So we've asked novelty cake specialist, Karen Davis, to help us out
And we've come to the Wirral to collect her masterpiece.
-Hi, Dave. Hi, Si.
-Hi, Karen, how are you?
-How's it going?
-All finished for you.
-Is that OK?
-That is perfect!
Oh, it's so lifelike! Fabulous!
With our camper van cake safely stowed, it's on to our last stop.
Cheadle golf club, venue for Helen and Johnny's wedding reception.
And there's no putting off the moment of truth.
Find the lights...
At the moment the wedding cake is nothing more than five pretty
white fruit cakes and lots of fancy bits of sugar.
But by tomorrow afternoon it's got to be gorgeous.
Five tiers high, and ready to wow Helen and Johnny.
We've never built anything like this before, so to be safe
we've given ourselves a day to do it.
-It's a very stressful occasion, isn't it?
-I didn't think I'd ever be as stressed as I am.
What we hadn't reckoned with was that the snooker lights would be on economy.
-Oh, you're joking, man?
-Got any 20s?
-Haven't got them!
-Another 50 in the meter!
Being blacked out every 20 minutes makes you realise how long these layers are taking.
With the daisies done, it's on to layer two.
I think she's going to love this layer because it's right up her quirky street.
-He-he, that's one for the divorce cake, isn't it?
Ha-ha! Oh, handy!
Whoa! Two down, three still to go.
Dude, this is taking longer than we thought.
Tell you what, I wasn't even as nervous as this at my own wedding.
This is my baby! We got these images
specially printed on a thin strip of icing.
-Let's call it a night, mate.
MUSIC: "Here Come The Bride"
You know what, dude, it's only now sinking in how important what we're doing actually is!
Dowling and balancing aren't something you can do in a hurry.
Dude, we're in a hurry!
These foundations have to be just right, cos this cake weighs a ton!
-How long have we got?
-Not very long now, they're on their way.
Ten minutes? Right, I've got the weight, needs to come further towards you.
Hurry up, the guests are here!
This is way out, here.
-Right, let's hide it, quick!
-I feel sick.
-So do I. I've never been so nervous in my life.
'Ladies and gentlemen, will you please be upstanding for the bride and groom.'
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
If you want the truth, this has been a tough one.
It has. A difficult birth.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
-Step this way.
-Step this way.
You liked a Baked Alaska?
-Close your eyes!
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
-Can't believe it!
-Ten out of ten!
Ten out of ten!
Very rich, tasty, lovely, you did good.
-I think it's absolutely gorgeous.
It's really, really moist and really tasty, really nice, thank you!
Thank you, boys! Thank you!
I feel quite emotional, that was lovely.
As far as baking's concerned, we've done it, that was
the creme de la menthe of baking, the icing on the cake!
-You're not wrong, dude, we've peaked!
-We've done it!
We peaked with that cake, aye!
It's different to what we've been doing, baking, isn't it? Much more alchemy, more organised.
-Well, there's celebration in a cake!
-There's passion in a pie!
There's dough in bread. There's a tart at teatime!
I've always liked that, my favourite!
Subtitling by Red Bee Media Ltd
From birthday cakes to traditional wedding cakes, Simon King and Dave Myers delve into the world of celebration cakes and face their biggest challenge to date - making a five-tier wedding cake.
The Hairies journey to Manchester to meet Helen and Jonnie, the couple who are prepared to let them loose on their wedding cake. The boys decide to bake a traditional fruit cake with a Hairy Bikers twist, using quantities of ingredients so large the cake has to be mixed in a wheelbarrow.
After baking and marzipanning the cakes, the boys attend sugar craft lessons before they attempt to begin decorating and then constructing the five tiers.
It is art meets engineering for the boys, and the bride and groom are followed in the nail-biting lead-up to their wedding.