The Family Wedding Cake Recipe

This week is my 26th wedding anniversary and I am sharing the recipe for my wedding cake.  I meant to make this last year for the big 25th, but life, as often happens, had other plans. So, here I am on a not-as-special-but-just-as-wonderful anniversary with a family story and recipe.My family's Wedding Cake recipe: mine, my mom's and all the cakes my grandmother catered in the 1950s and 1960sMy grandmother ran a restaurant in her home during the 1950s.  It was a reservation only, private party type restaurant.  People would come to celebrate happy occasions like birthdays and anniversaries.  Mamie made beautiful cakes when commissioned.  In the 1960s, she closed the restaurant, but continued catering weddings at other sites.

A cake my grandmother made in the 1950s

When my mom got married, my grandmother made the cake:

My parent's wedding cakeWhen I got married, my mom made my cake:

My family's Wedding Cake recipe: mine, my mom's and all the cakes my grandmother catered in the 1950s and 1960sThese cutting the cake photos are funny, because they are totally fake.  We didn’t cut the cake.  At that age, we had no idea how to properly cut a huge layer cake so that everyone got a piece.  We simply stuck our knife in and took out a little chunk.  Then an older lady shooed us away and went to work.  First, however, she removed that special top layer.  That, traditionally, was to go into the freezer and come out at the first wedding anniversary as proof positive that we were going to make a go of this marriage thing.

The top layer of my wedding cake was carefully wrapped in waxed paper and foil so that it wouldn’t be freezer burned.  Then it was labeled and put away.  I left with my husband for our new life in Washington state.   A few months later, my father retired from the military and moved to another town in Arizona.  I flew home to help Mom with the packing and unpacking.  That special cake came out of the freezer and went into their motor home for the move.  Once we all arrived in the new home, the cake went was supposed to go into their new freezer.  My husband and I were going to visit for Christmas and take it home then.  However, I got to thinking that a year old piece of cake wasn’t going to taste very good.  At the time it was only two months old, so it was probably still pretty good.

Can you see where this train of thought led me?

Yes.  I ate the entire top layer of my wedding cake.  All. By. Myself.  And only two months after I said “I do.”

My mother was aghast.  What doom could this portend for my future?  What would my husband say??

Twenty-six years later, he still teases me about it.  To quiet him once and for all, I have finally made him a cake that HE can eat all by himself.  (Though my kids will gladly help him)  My family's Wedding Cake recipe: mine, my mom's and all the cakes my grandmother catered in the 1950s and 1960sI clearly did not inherit the cake decorating genes of my mother and grandmother.  We are all lucky that the cake is circular, tall and not lopsided.  It is an almond flavored pound cake with a beautiful moist crumb.  In order to make those huge cakes, the recipe had to be doubled and trebled.   The following recipe makes a simple two layer cake.  I filled it with store bought strawberry jam and topped it with a buttercream frosting.

The Family Wedding Cake Recipe
  • 1⅔ cups sugar
  • ¾ cup butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ tsp almond extract
  • 2½ cups sifted flour
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  1. Cream the butter and sugar.
  2. Add the eggs and flavorings and mix well.
  3. Alternate adding the dry ingredients with the buttermilk.
  4. Once all of the ingredients are added, beat it for at least 1 more minute.
  5. Bake in two greased and floured 9 inch pans for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
  6. Test for done-ness with a toothpick before removing from the oven.
  7. Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to complete the cooling process.
  8. Frost as desired.


7 thoughts on “The Family Wedding Cake Recipe

  1. I have had the top layer of a year old frozen wedding cake, and i’ll tell you they are nasty.. the lady that made my cake told us not to freeze the top layer just to go ahead and eat it.. as she would make us a brand new one for the year anniversary, and she did. it was so so good.

    1. Now that is the way to go! I was 1000 miles away from my mom, who baked the cake, on my first anniversary and didn’t think at the time that I could manage it myself. Thanks for reinforcing my excuses for eating that cake by myself – it would have been gross if we’d have waited 🙂

  2. Ha! That is so funny. You were definitely right to eat the cake. Since we were married in Maui, we knew ours wouldn’t make it home. It was breakfast, lunch, and dinner for three weeks 😉
    Also, your grandma has mad street cred- she was doing popups in the 50s!

    1. Gah! I cannot imagine eating leftover cake for three weeks, that would have been enough to put me off cake forever! And yes, my grandmother was quite a woman, in the kitchen and out! Thanks for stopping by!

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