Published at Sunday, September 29th, 2019 - 11:54:54 AM. Cake. By Forrest Montminy.
Okay, by now, you know, I do research on trivial/little known traditions, so let me tell you why, supposedly we are to keep the top of the cake for a year and then eat it with your spouse on your one year anniversary. You know I had to know. One, because it seems so random. Two, our cake did not make it through the first six months (My husband had never heard of that tradition and thought that I’d forgotten that we had cake in the freezer. Ate, some of it and then called to remind me that we had cake. Do I hear a collective intake of shocked breath?) The tradition comes from the 19th century [There were a lot of things pertaining to cakes happening during that century. I wonder if Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom loved cake. Yum.] Anyway, during the 19th century, it was usual and expected that the bride and groom would invariably have a child 9 months or so after their marriage, so the top layer of the cake was saved to have at the Christening. This was before refrigeration, so where were they keeping it? For nine months and was it still any good? Boggles the mind doesn’t it? Maybe they were filled with liquor to keep or fermented or fermenting fruit?
Fruit cakes, fillings are out, even though the United Kingdom’s Royal wedding went with a traditional fruit cake, which most Americans shun religiously at Christmas, so would NEVER be included or thought perfect for a wedding cake to be shared with your new relatives, friends, or even your spouse. Prior to the tradition in the United Kingdom of sweet or fruity cakes, in Medieval times the cake was usually made of a plain unsweetened bread. Actually probably a truer metaphor for what the bride was getting into than anything since. The bread was usually eaten first by the groom, who then broke it over the bride’s head showing his dominance over her (presumably throughout the rest of their married life.) I can see why that is not practiced anymore.
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