Cool and not so cool birthday cake trends of 2020

This is the style that keeps giving. A fault line cake is typically decorated with buttercream. It has a visible under layer peeking through the midsection in a contrasting colour, pattern or embellishments. We have many versions of it with stripes, sprinkles and even gold leaf!

Fault line cakes are like the more appetising cousin of the Geode-Cake trend of yester-years. I’ve never heard anyone ever say, “ooh I love the feeling of loosing a tooth over a rock-hard lump of crystallised sugar.” So the idea to cut out lovely soft sponge layers of CAKE to replace with sugar rock was always going to go go down like a sack of…well, rocks..

We love our smooth lined buttercream finish on cakes but there are some very interesting textures in buttercream. “Roughed up” buttercream finishes are actually quite a tricky effect to achieve. It’s counter-intuitive to purposefully ‘destroy’ a perfectly smoothed cake. Also, there is a fine line between “roughed up” and just rough. But when done right, such as a ruffle or a scalloped finish, they look really lovely.

I don’t want to think naked cakes are going out of fashion, because they are gorgeous, but they just aren’t as en vogue as they used to be. I won’t have to worry though as the stripped-back barren look will come back again just like flared trousers. Oh wait, are flares back in fashion yet?

A spin-off of the popular fault line cake is the ‘half-wrapped cake’. This style didn’t seem to have a name so I’ve taken the authority to coin the term. They are basically a frosted cake with a contrasting over-layer on the base, giving it a “half-wrapped” look. I think it looks particularly fetching in smaller 4 inch or 6” sized cakes. And you couldn’t pay me enough to do it in a 12” size because that would be minging.

Hello, 1940’s called, they want their cakes filled with fresh whipped cream, topped with fresh fruit and drowned in gloopy shiny glaze back. These cakes are as old-fashioned as they come and whilst they taste lovely they look just about as trendy as granny’s floral drapes. Let’s just call them Granny Gateaux.

Novelty cakes are here to stay. Sad, but true. There is no denying that full-fondant-frontal cakes will always be a mainstay when it comes to the typical novelty cakes. But we are seeing more of buttercream cakes adapted to themes with minimal decorative fondant touches. Our Old MacDonald’s farm cake is a perfect example of a typical novelty cake brought to buttercream-life

I’m not sitting on the fence on this. Cupcakes are trying hard to stay relevant by being absolutely EVERYWHERE.

If 2019 was the year of plant-based, 2020 is set-to be sugar-free. More and more people are turning to low carb ways of eating with diets such as paleo and keto. And keeping carb count low in cakes would mean you can still treat yourself on occasion without blowing up like a blimp. Just because a cake is low in carbs does not have to mean it’s low in taste! There are a good few varieties of natural sweeteners than can be used to replace sugar. And almond flour is a great wheat-free substitute in cakes and bakes.

This actually physically pains me to suggest, but macarons just aren’t as popular anymore. I never thought I’d equate them to cupcakes, especially as they are so much MORE in terms of technique. But seeing them as easily available as cupcakes makes them not as coveted as they used to be. Luckily for us we saw this coming and I turned my palette knife to cake many years ago. And since our macaron topped cakes are still popular, which is literally the best of both worlds, I can sigh a big breath of relief.

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