Grey Cakes, Not just for weddings in the old south.
Here in Seattle we often describe the October – May period of the year as the Grey Season, or Concrete Sky’s. But today a number of Seattle’s best bakers and caterers brought our regional color out in celebration.
Cakes with monochrome grey frosting are an unusual sight, confectionery tradition calls for cakes to be colorful, and usually bright. Grey frosting however has a traditional foothold in The groom’s cake; arguably the best-known Southern wedding tradition, thanks to the film Steel Magnolias! In the film an aunt provides the traditional cake which is designed as a masculine contrast the Wedding Cake’s white and pastel hues. This gentleman’s cake is traditionally iced in grey, and decorated in dark colors, and usually references the grooms career, education, or in modern uses their favorite sports team. Cinematic humor made her contribution an Armadillo made of Red-Velvet cake with grey icing, prompting many to ask how or why one makes grey icing…
Gray cakes are the foundation delicacy at the “Depressed Cake Shop,” for one day only this delightfully drab confection serves as a benefit for local mental health advocacy programs. Bakers deliver a variety of pastries, pies and cupcakes – dark and stormy on the outside, bright on the inside – a delightful metaphor to the struggle a quarter of all Americans have with mental illness summed up in the tagline “Can grey cakes help cure depression? Let’s find out!”
The concept was created by the aptly named Emma Cakehead in the United Kingdom, her unique approach to raising awareness of mental health issues in what I find to be a creative, and tasty approach to advocacy. Word of mouth, and the power of Oprah’s media voice have extended its reach to thirty pop-up shops around the globe.
You can learn more about The Depressed Cake Shop here.