Today we talk about a “tradition” that is very special and one that is practiced at nearly every wedding you will attend, not only in Richmond, Virginia but all over the United States. It is the wedding cake cutting ceremony. It is important for several reasons. It is the centerpiece of the reception, and is only outclassed by the beauty of the bride. Officially, it is the first thing the bride and groom do as husband and wife; it is also the last thing that guests eat, which leaves a lasting impression. Finally, it is the last formal ceremony of the wedding and etiquette states that guests may leave after the cake cutting. Holding the cake cutting until later in the reception will not encourage guests to stay. If you notice guests leaving before the cake cutting, simply cut the cake a little earlier so that all the guests can share in its symbolism and taste.
Many theories exist as to why the bride and groom feed each other a piece of cake.
The meaning of this gesture has its roots in the “good old days”…when men worked and women stayed at home. When the man feeds his wife cake, the cake itself represents sustenance and through this gesture he pledges to provide food, shelter and money for his wife and family. The bride responds at the same time by feeding her husband and pledging to care for the home, cook and bear children. By not touching each other during the feeding, each person pledges to perform their tasks unaided.
The cutting itself involves the bride holding the knife and the groom gently assisting as the first piece is removed. Both the bride and groom take a small piece of cake, and as they face each other feed their partner. Neither partner touches the other during the feeding. It is best to concentrate on where you are putting the cake, not where the piece is coming from…that’s where trust comes in. This is often attributed to be the start of “smooshing”, as you run the risk of missing your partner’s mouth if you are concentrating on their hands.
Now that you have a better understanding of the symbolic importance or the cake cutting ceremony, perhaps you’ll think twice before you “smoosh”!
Graham has has over thirty years cake decorating experience. Cakes by Graham is Richmond’s only award winning custom cakery at specializes in the unique.