Sprinkles or Cream?

2.17.2014

By Sami Pritchard

Of all the questions to consider for your wedding day, the hardest may be: Cake or pie?

Too much choice is not always a good thing. With wedding cakes, it used to be easy. Forget cookies, cupcakes, elaborate fruit tarts, whoopie pies, or gateaux. If it wasn’t a towering pyramid of sponge tiers cloaked in fondant, it wasn’t a real wedding.

Other countries have their own traditions — the French eat profiteroles, the Brits tuck into iced fruitcake — but in all cases the wedding cake was a long-settled question, not open for debate. It was inevitable, perhaps, that this monolithic tradition would succumb to our compulsion to turn everything into a personal statement. We’re living in the age of the selfie, after all. But as long as taste is the winner, who’s complaining?

Still, the options complicate an already stressful day. Who better to shed some light on this vexing question than Brooklyn-based bakers Renato Poliafito and Matt Lewis, whose book, Baked: New Frontiers in Baking (available now), is all about finding new twists on beloved classics.

We also asked two married couples, Simon Doonan and Jonathan Adler, and Ed Droste, of the indie-rock band Grizzly Bear, and Chad McPhail what their fantasy wedding dessert would be — and challenged the Baked boys to make them.

What cake would Poliafito and Lewis choose?
Poliafito: Mine is an off-the-menu cake at Baked called the Black and Gold Cake. It’s a devil’s food cake made with super dark chocolate and dark chocolate whiskey pudding between the layers. We cover it with black and gold sprinkles.
Lewis: Our malted-milk chocolate cake. It would be pretty elegant with the contrast between light and dark when you slice it. It’s not an in-your-face flavor — it’s very subtle.

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