There is a lot of talk out there from magazines and some party planners that if some of the tiers of your cake are “fake”, the price of the cake will be less expensive. (I would really love to know who initially told publications and planners this “tip”.) Well, I am here to tell you that IT’S NOT TRUE! (Sorry – I didn’t mean to yell…) It’s the artistry/workmanship on the outside of the cake that makes the cake more expensive. Think about it this way, the more you put on a wedding dress, the higher the cost of the dress. Well in baking, it’s the same principal, but a different medium. The more you put on your cake, the higher the cost will be.
However, there are a couple of reasons as to why we would use fake tiers in a cake. More often than not, it’s a structural thing. For the cakes that look like they defy gravity, well they need a little help. You can’t really “bend” a cake without it collapsing, so we do a little assisting.
The only other time we would do a fake tier is for travel purposes. The top tier(s) of the cake are the first to come to room temperature. If the cake is traveling more than 2 hours out of the NYC metro area, then we will follow this practice. It may be a little zealous on our part, but for us at the bakery it’s always about the cake getting there in perfect condition.