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What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen
Thursday
Jul302009

Who Cut the Cheese?

That's right, folks: the day you've been waiting for is finally here. All those hours of planning, long nights of anticipation, and stockpiling of Lactaid pills will finally pay off, because today...is National Cheesecake Day.

Now, I know what you're thinking. "Jem," you're thinking - because you frequently get me mixed up with the 80s cartoon rocker - "Jem, how is it even possible to Wreck a cheese cake?"

Why, like this, my adorably confused reader:

[singing] "This-is-how-we-do-it!"

Aww, I see this was taken on my birthday, Mike & Angie. Well, thanks for the thought and all, but that drippy brown splotch has just reminded me: I...uh...don't eat drippy brown splotches. Sorry.

So that's a traditional cheesecake Wreck, but what if I told you it gets even Wreckier?

BEHOLD, THE WEDDING CHEESE CAKE WRECK!!!

Yes, my dear Wreckies, I'm afraid it's true: that is a "cake" made entirely of cheese. And not a sweet cream cheese, either - oh no. I'm talkin' the stuff that gets described with words like "sharp," "green veining," and "stinky feet." And it's a wedding cake.

I wish I could say this is a one-time fluke, but unfortunately wedding cheese "cakes" are a growing trend. They're not in addition to the traditional cake, either; they're in place of it. Meaning there is no actual wedding cake at these weddings - just cheese. Cheese! As if that's an acceptable substitute!


What happened to the time-tested wedding arrangement? You know, the one where we bring expensive linens, crystal, and espresso-makers in exchange for a free meal, a little boozy dancing, and a slice of gorgeously decorated, oh-so-scrumptious cake?

Frankly, it only adds insult to injury when someone tries to "pretty" these things up, too:

Fake flowers and ribbon pinned (yes, pinned) into cheese wheels does not an elegant "cake" make.

Still, nothing's as bad as combining cake, cheese, and a pork pie all into a single display:

The question is, can you tell which layer is which?

Cass J., Anony M., Stella P., & Second Anony., I Camembert it; all the Gouda puns Havarti been used!


- Related Wreckage: "Cake" Cruelty


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Reader Comments (277)

I rarely read the comments because I get so irritated at how some people think. I'd expect those who read this blog to have a sense of humor and understand that people are not seriously attending weddings solely for the cake. The comments on the baby cakes the other day were so terrible I couldn't even get through them. How can some people think they have the right to come to someone's personal blog and tell them to delete entries or post warnings or feel bad about an unfortunate coincidence? I am officially done reading comments and will stick to enjoying the blog. My sympathies go to John for having to read through all this crap every day. Comments like I've seen on here lately would be enough to make me close comments on all future posts or privatize the blog or throw in the towel altogether.

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoCo

Those wheels of cheese cakes are just plain wrong. I saw one featured on the wedding of the week in my local paper a few weeks back and thought it was wrong then. I didn't realise it was a trend. Lots of wrongness.

(Though it does make reading wedding of the week for piss-taking purposes more enjoyable)

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFrisky Librarian

OMG WHY??????????????

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenn

I'm sure you've heard this comment before, but I just puked in my mouth a little. And I'm pretty sure that's what I'd do if I showed up to a wedding that served cheese instead of cake! GROSS!!!

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMommyAmy

In the last picture, the top layer is the pork pie. First I was just thinking that replacing a cake with pork pie is far worse than replacing it with cheese. Then I realized that if the bride and groom cut into the top of the cake (isn't the top traditionally theirs to take home? do they prefer pork pie to cake?!) it would drip pork-pie-goodness on the real cake, ruining it!

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Definitely detecting some Eurocentrism in these comments. America is the only country in the world that doesn't serve cheese with every meal? Are you kidding? Ever heard of China? India? Africa? South America?

July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wrong on so many levels.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDysFUNctional Mom

Wow... those literal cheese wedding cakes made me quite nauseated... Gross.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Why not just put out a stack of BLT's?

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDecadent Housewife

It's All Gouda!!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJimbear1

@msyendor:
Ah, yesss...gustatory perfection (with a fingers-to lips salute)--
MMMWAAHH!

Come--join R.O.C.K. C.H.E.E.S.E.
Bring the little family...
A good time is to be had by small.
=^--^=

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

At first, I was like "cheesecake for wedding cake isn't a bad idea," I had a cheesecake torte wedding cake, and people raved about it. I got a couple "are you going to serve the wedding cake, too, or are you just wrapping pieces to take home since you served this cake instead," and "wedding cake is supposed to be dry and yucky, this is amazing." But, then I saw the cheese cakes, and, well, no.

(FYI, the cheesecake torte was two layers of cake with a layer of cheesecake in the middle, and filling in between the cheesecake layer and the top and bottom cake layers. So, so good. We had some yellow cake with strawberries between the cake and cheesecake and marble cake with chocolate mousse between the cake and cheesecake. And...now I'm hungry. For cake.)

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

It's not a good sign when your wedding cake is indistinguishable from a wheel of parmesan. o.0

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

When my son was almost three my husband had a birhday. I asked hubby what kind of cake he would like. He answered that what really sounded good was a cheesecake. So I make a cheesecake and we stuck candles in it, sang happy birthday, etc.

Hubby loved it, but Jr. was unimpressed. He had never heard of cheesecake before this, but he was up for it, I mean, he liked cheese, and he loved cake... He was quite perturbed with the pie thing that we offered though, which was neither.

A few months later when it was time for little one's third birthday, I asked him what kind of cake he wanted. He made an awful face and said, "Not that kind Daddy had..."

(This has become one of our standard family stories. In fact last week when we were preparing for Jr.'s 25th birthday, my daughter and I were discussing the cake she planned to make. She was guessing he would want chocolate/chocolate, but of course one of us commented, "He just doesn't want that kind Daddy had!")

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterladykay

Look at that three layered cake..Cute..hehe ;D

Solo
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July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSolo

Isn't anything sacred anymore?

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFanboy Wife

I'm another who finds the horror in some of the comments a little surprising -

If the bride & groom would rather have really good cheese, why not?

Someone mentioned left overs - I don't think there were necessarily be more left over cheese than leftover cake,but if there is, good cheese keeps well,and just gets better with age (and most cheeses taste better at room temp. than chilled, too,so having it sit out before cutting the cheese is not a problem)-

It's not for everyone, but there's nothing gross about it.

I admit that, as a European, theer is nothing odd to me at all about the idea of cheese at the end of the meal - either after or instead of dessert. (although you need good cheese for it to work, and in my experience that is much less readily availble in the US than it is in most of europe)

If you have traditional wedding cake (i.e. rich fruit cake) then you could combine the two - a nice mature white stilton + fruitcake (once you've peled off the marzipan) = heaven!

And Pork Pie - no gravy, no vegetables, no juice. If it is a decent pork pie it won't drip anything on to the cake below - the worst that might happen would be a few flakes of pastry. And the prok pie would also go very well with the cheese...
(pork pie link http://porkpie.placement.co.uk/index.asp" rel="nofollow"> here )

I'm feeling hungry now.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMarjorie

One comment has made me lol "ew the cheese looks like its been sitting there for hours". Wow. From wikipedia: "A newborn cheese is usually salty yet bland in flavor and, for harder varieties, rubbery in texture. These qualities are sometimes enjoyed—cheese curds are eaten on their own—but normally cheeses are left to rest under carefully controlled conditions. This aging period (also called ripening, or, from the French, affinage) can last from a few days to several years."

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterdarkshines

"Oh So Scrumptious" cake at weddings is an American tradition that started with the pilgrims, according to some tradition websites.

Fruitcake at weddings is all I've ever known. It's why I hate cake at weddings.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNightfalltwen

Ok, I am obviously going to the wrong weddings. IF there is cake (and I say if because lately people have been cheaping out and not having cake) it usually ends up being some crummy dried out cake that I swear was sitting in the baker's freezer for the past 2 years and forgot about this order and quick thawed it out, or it was fruitcake. Yes people, they still make fruitcake wedding cakes. Just to make you regret that you didn't get them the cheapo dustbuster from the surplus store...you get fruitcake.....

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Everyone here DOES realize that the cheese in cheesecake is cream cheese, not the kind you slice off and eat in a sandwich (or with some crackers)?

And what culinary school dropout would try to wreck a cheesecake? I understand a regular cake or even a cupcake, but a cheesecake?!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterC.L. Young

Hey, I've been complaining for years that the kiddies don't actually get proper wedding cake anymore - forget "cheese" cakes, anything that's not a rum-soaked fruitcake is not a real wedding cake (the fruit is in there to ensure the fertility of the union, and the rum is there to ensure that Great-Grandma is mellow all evening).

Well, okay, that last part is just made up. My Great-Grandma brought her own rum to the wedding. But the part about the fruitcake is all true.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterOphelia The Pedantic

Not all wedding cakes are dried out messes. Mine was AWESOME! It was moist and the frosting was a very yummy butter cream. Everyone loved it and people were lining up to take a slice home after they had a slice (big cake...didn't mind sharing).

I guess it's where you get the cake and how far in advance it was made. Mine was made fresh that morning so it was all good!

Even the top cake that was frozen and pulled out for our first anniversary was still yummy. It was surprisingly still moist and not all dried out.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDevNAbbyMom

@Kirsty who said "While I love cake as much as the next gal, when a friend got married she had a cake of cheese for the simple reason that her husband is severely diabetic, and thus cannot (sadly) eat cake."

The reception, where the cake is traditionally eaten, is held to "THANK YOUR GUESTS" for being a part of your day. It is customary to bestow them with your best food and/or wine and pastries. To deny all of your guests to have cake because the groom is diabetic is selfish and a total "in your face" denial of concern for the guests. The groom could have simply had one small portion made especially for him.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJudy

Someone asked which layer of the Cake/Cheese/Pork Pie combo the Pickle and Mustard would be used with. Pickle can go with either the cheese or the pork pie. The msutard would almost certainly be for the pork pie.

Pork pies do not contain any juice that would dribble out onto the lower layers, and I assume that the cheese layer is in the middle and would catch any crumbs of pastry that would fall from the upper layer.

Someone else mentioned eating fruit cake with cheese. That's pretty much the only way I can stand eating fruit cake. I'm going on a cake decorating course and they've said we have to bring a fruit cake along to decorate. The whole thing will be fed to my boyfriend. I certainly won't be touching it.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCiara

You know, though, most wedding cakes don't actually taste that good. They look like fancy frosted castles but they taste like Styrofoam, because the baker put all the effort into making it pretty and considerably less into making it delicious.

I say this from lots of experience - I've never had a slice of professional wedding cake that was actually good.

So I'll take the Camembert, thanks.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

congratulations by making beautiful cakes much like to know your blog.
like to introduce you my hope that you enjoy:)

http://latas-formasecortantes.blogspot.com

See, if I WERE so inclined to serve a cheese-based course at my wedding :::small "snertch!" at the thought of ever doing THAT again:::...anyway, my cheese would be a simple wheel of sharp cheddar, accompanied by a very sharp knife. Next to the cheese: a large stack of fresh-baked, very good sourdough bread, a bowl of excellent brown mustard, and some sliced smoked ham. Next to THAT: a big electric griddle. Grilled ham and cheese for everyone...and dammit, CAKE for afters. Screw the dried-out chicken breast with rice pilaf that usually passes for wedding food--in fact, we can take it even farther, and have the soup course be a big bowl of Campbell's Tomato. (Hey, if I was to get married again, my friends and family would NEED some comfort food. Or SOMETHING comforting, anyway.)

wv: lugul. "The wedding guest made a loud hacking noise and said 'Eating all that cheese has given me a giant lugul.'"

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGladys

Jen,you may have found yourself a really BIG challenge for Sunday Sweets, a superior Cheese"cake". Granted if you did find such a thing it might have to be Sunday Savories that week. :)

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Okay, I've already posted that I am totally having a cheese "cake" at my wedding instead of yet another cake that people can make easily at home if they really want it . . . honestly, I can rarely afford good cheese, but cake is always within my price range. But anyway, I was looking over the post, and I can understand that the first couple of piles of cheesy goodness are ugly and worthy of being called wrecks on that basis, but can someone explain to me what is wrecky about that last one? It's beautifully displayed on a lovely little stand, they kept it nice and simple, and, well . . . it's just pretty. Is the so called "wreckiness" of it really based on the fact that it's cheese instead of cake? I just can't understand that, and I keep thinking there's something more that I'm missing.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNick

Sorry, I meant to say cheese and pork pie. But still, can't see the wreckiness of it.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNick

Ohhh, I love cheese! I've seen some really pretty Cheese cakes, as in cakes of cheese.

Yum! Wish I'd thought of it for my wedding.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I don't know ... I think I'd actually rather have a cheese "cake" at my wedding. I love cheese. In fact, Cake Wrecks forgive me, when I get married I might even do it!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commentercadylee

This low carb nonsense has gone far enough!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZoë Moët

the most horrifying thing to me? all the comments that say, "there's no point in a wedding if you don't have cake.. all i go for is the cake," etc.

silly me. i thought weddings were about celebrating a union. apparently, it's only about cake. that's really really sad.

i have been to several weddings with no cake. one for couple who was diabetic and would prefer not to have something at their weddign they couldn't eat, one for people who don't like cake (i personally have never tasted a wedding cake i liked. i DO like cake, but birthday and/or wedding cake always tastes like ass.) one was a medieval themes wedding,a nd pies were more in keeping.

i love cheese, and i'd much rather have cheese than cake. i understand the point of this blog is to point out "cake" wrecks... if they're not cake, it's not a cakewreck then, hm?

"weddings are for cake."

that's really really frickin' sad, people.

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenter~melly

I actually had a cake made of cheese at my wedding, and everyone really enjoyed it. Of course, we had regular cake too, so that probably helped. You can see pictures at http://worthington-photography.com/blog/2009/05/jesse-jonathans-wedding-on-saturday-may-2nd/

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJ

Ew. ew. ew. Half the reason for a wedding is the cake, right?!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjlcutler

Actually that looks like my dream cake. Ummmhmm, I love me some cheese. Yum! I think if I ever get married I'll be going this route.

It certainly tastes better then 99% of all wedding cakes out there. Lasts longer, too, and if you have left overs and is more versatile. You can't make Welsh rarebit or pizza with cake!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterplatedlizard

Because you asked: http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/jI81RaL5NQQ2eHXYs7YkgA?feat=directlink" rel="nofollow"> Ham Cake!

Or, more correctly, Sushi Cake, courtesy of my Japanese language preschool. It's "chirashi sushi" or sushi toppings on rice. In this case chirashi sushi layer cake, sushi rice topped with sliced ham, crab, and egg with a layer of cucumber and veggies in the middle. Mmm mmm!

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSiâni

Oh, and my wedding cake was fantastic! It was this moist wonderful yellow cake with a layer of butter cream and fresh local raspberries. And pureed raspberries in the butter cream. No artificial color or flavors just %100 tart sweet silky joy. If at all possible marry a man who grew up next to a retired pastry chef.

Only five weeks to go till the anniversary cake...

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSiâni

Okay without reading others responses I'm going with cake at the bottom, Cheese in the middle and Pie at the top - Did I get it? Did I Huh Huh.

Now don't get me wrong I like cheese, A LOT, But honestly . . . I wonder if they worked for the Dairy Board. . .

Cheers Jen / Jem (nice cover for the typo slip btw) Come to Toronto on that tour of yours . . . you can even drive to get here.

JBex

July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBeki

What I think is even sadder than people saying they would leave the wedding with no real cake is that someone actually is taking that seriously and getting all upset over the idea that people are placing a larger importance on the cake than celebrating with the bride and groom. It's horrible when someone has their sense of humor removed. Tragic, really.

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I can't agree with this post, Jen, I'm sorry. And that's a first for me.

I don't go to a wedding for cake. I don't think a cake is a reason for a wedding. And I'm amused so many people say those are their reasons. Don't you guys love your friends and family that you're celebrating their union? You gotta have a sweet-toothed reason? Tsk.

But anyway. What's wrong with an alternative in a wedding? Cheese isn't bad. A lot of people like cheese. A lot of people don't like cake. I don't find any issue with making cheese arrangements. Not at all.

I will say the examples you gave aren't exactly lovely. Frankly, they're a little scary. I don't think they should be pairing lovely ribbons with speckled cheese. It looks frightening.

But really? Don't bash the cheese. Bash the decorators.

And before anyone goes flaming me over *my opinion* in an *open commentary* blog, lemme say this. I'm not going to bother checking back to see if anyone's flailed at me over this.

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGypsy

The stack o' cheese cake is BRILLIANT. Here's why. When the "cake" is actually just cheese, they still have to serve dessert. Which is usually better than the subpar cake they hide under the average wedding day monstrosity.

And if your friends getting married have excellent taste (like my friends did) you get amazing, delicious cheese to eat AND a tasty dessert plate with three different, delicious cakes on it. All hail the cheese pile!

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMeghan

Cheese > Cake

I'm kinda a cheese groupie--last time we did a count, we had fifteen types of cheese in our fridge. Therefore, I approve, especially of the clever, prettified "cheese cake".

If people adore cheese but aren't that into cake, why not have a nice-looking cheese wedding cake?

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered Commentergenaeve

Seriously, why do people still pretend that wedding cakes taste good? They don't. I'll take cheese any day over wedding cake.

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

OH MAH GAWD! That's SO wrong. Want a cheese course? FINE. But turn the dessert into cheese? EPIC fail.

My cousin had a cheesecake wedding cake - OMG, it was SO good. If you're ever out between Buffalo, NY, and Allegheny State Park, there's this blissful, delicious bakery called Butterwood Desserts ( http://southbend-24.pgzn.com/~cakeart/home.php ) Now THAT is how you do Cheesecake Wedding Cake. :D

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDea

I wonder if maybe the weddings that had the cheese towers had more elaborate, scrumptious OTHER desserts?? I know that at the wedding hall I worked at for 3 years, we had a few times when a bride wanted a creme brulee or a fruit tart served to the guests, and used either a "prop" cake with only a tiny amount of "real" cake to cut for pics, or wrapped up the "traditional" wedding cake for people to take home (which, fwiw, is a VERY southern tradition - you're supposed to place it under your pillow ad dream of your ow Mr. Right. ;) )

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDea

Wow. Not many of you from Quebec, I see. Pork pie may not be a standard wedding food (it's always been a Christmas morning breakfast for us) but it's definately a well-known and much loved food.

And that cheese-cake-pie tiered thing just determined me that if I ever get married, I will share the joy of pork pie with everybody.

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBradS

Oh Americans make me giggle so much. "Oh yes, this is a well known tradition in Engloscotlandshire". No. No it is not. Someone just decided, of their own free will (remember that concept?) that they'd have a pie/cheese/cake ensemble. Quite smashing it looks too.

Pork pie is absolutely not hot, definitely not sausage-like, and wonderfully delicious.

Oh and our cheese is not like your 'Cheez Whiz' or those insipid burger slices made of plastic. We have a wide range of amazingly unique cheeses that would make any normal person's mouth water with trepidation. Whether in a sandwich, with crackers, on toast or enjoyed in alternating mouthfuls with a lovely fruit cake, it's irreplaceable.

Culture - get you some.

August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterPitYacker from Venus

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