Smitten by a S’Mores Cake | Merrily Wed Lake Tahoe Weddings

Yummm – everyone loves a warm, just-off-the-fire s’more! And the nostalgic, comfort feeling they instill…  Nothing goes hand-in-hand better than Lake Tahoe, the mountains and s’mores but sometimes incorporating these into your Tahoe wedding might be difficult with open fire rules, the thought of dripping marshmallow on fine silk or maybe it just doesn’t go with your wedding style/look for the big day. The rehearsal dinner can be a good option OR how about a s’mores cake!?!

 

S'Mores Cake, Courtesy of Sweetapolita.com, Merrily Wed, Lake Tahoe Weddings

From the glorious kitchen of Canadian baker and blogger Sweetapolita, this sinful 6-layer rich chocolate malted and toasted marshmallow cake will be a crowd pleaser and have your guests coming back for more. The marshmallow filling is full of marshmallows actually toasted in the oven – these little details are what really makes (and takes!) the cake.

S'Mores Cake, Courtesy of Sweetapolita.com, Merrily Wed, Lake Tahoe Weddings

6 layers of dark, moist chocolate cake sandwiching alternating rich and fluffy frosting: satiny Belgian chocolate malted frosting and creamy toasted-marshmallow vanilla frosting with bits of actual crispy marshmallow in every bite. Strangely, the finished cake is not really super sweet–it’s more rich, light, and creamy sweet…

S'Mores Cake, Courtesy of Sweetapolita.com, Merrily Wed, Lake Tahoe Weddings
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Okay, mouth-watering yet? No more teasing, here is the recipe for an 8″ round 6-layer cake courtesy of Sweetapolita:

Rich Chocolate Cake

This is for three 8″ pans, but the layers will be a bit more shallow if you use the recipe as it is written. If you double the recipe, you will be able to fill the pans 2/3 full, resulting in thicker layers. You will have some remaining batter, with which you can make cupcakes, etc. You can also increase by 50%.

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup Cacao Barry Extra Brute Cocoa Powder (or similar premium brand)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup strong black coffee
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespooon pure vanilla extract

Method:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare 3 x 8″ cake pans with butter and flour or parchment paper. In bowl of electric mixer, sift all dry ingredients. Add all remaning ingredients to bowl with the dry ingredients and with paddle attachment on mixer, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed (you may need the plastic splashguard that comes with mixer) and pour into prepared pans. Batter will be liquidy.

Bake for 20 minutes and rotate pans in oven. Cakes are done when toothpick or skewer comes clean–approximately 35 minutes. Try not to overbake. Cool on wire racks for 20 minutes then gently invert onto racks until completely cool.

Malted Belgian Chocolate Frosting

Ingredients:

1 lb butter (4 sticks or 2 cups) at room temperature
4 cups icing sugar (confectioners’ or powdered)
3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup Ovaltine Classic (brown in colour)
8 oz Pure Bittersweet chocolate, premium brand – chopped and melted
1/2 cup whipping (35% fat) cream

Method:

In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, combine the icing sugar and butter and beat on low speed for about 1 minute. Add vanilla and malt powder, and beat on low until well combined. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth (about 2 minutes). Add whipping cream and beat on med-high speed for another minute. Best used right away.

*Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Chocolate Frosting recipe

Toasted-Marshmallow Frosting

Ingredients:
16 large white marshmallows
1 cup icing sugar (confectioners’ or powdered)
1/2 lb butter (2 sticks, or 1 cup) at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
8 oz of Kraft Jet-Puffed Marshmallow Cream (or Marshmallow Fluff)

Method:

Place marshmallows on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Place on lower rack of oven, and broil marshmallows until nice and brown on top, between 30-60 seconds. Remove pan from oven and gently turn the marshmallows over, and broil until they are golden brown. Be sure to keep an eye on them–they burn very, very quickly. Combine butter and icing sugar in electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, on low until blended (about 1 minute). Add vanilla and mix on high for about 3 minutes. Add marshmallow cream and toasted marshmallows, and mix on lowest setting for about 1 minute.

S'Mores Cake, Courtesy of Sweetapolita.com, Merrily Wed, Lake Tahoe Weddings

This is a fresh, stylish way to introduce s’mores into your wedding reception with possibly a groom’s cake or cupcakes or even the showcase wedding cake!

Tahoe Signature of Style,

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Plan Your Own Wedding | Merrily Wed® Lake Tahoe Wedding Planning

Plan Your Own Wedding, DIY Wedding Planning, Merrily Wed Academy, Wedding Planning CoachOnce the novelty of being engaged subsides (or even if doesn’t!), you can’t ignore the growing reality that you need to begin to plan your wedding. If your life is already scheduled to the max, how do you make the time for this?

How to plan your own wedding, much less where to begin, can seem very daunting. From glossy wedding magazines to e-newsletters, from blog-sites to wedding website collectives, from social media to bridal fairs….

You get the idea, the amount of available information is staggering. Besides not knowing exactly where to start, how do you know which available information is actually useful rather than a gimmick?

Most couples begin planning their wedding with little or no experience, yet have the pressure to get it ‘right’ from the first to last important decisions. Not much else in life comes with these expectations! When planning your own wedding, you cannot afford to waste time, money or your peace of mind.

So, if you are a newly engaged bride and wondering how to plan your own wedding, your options might look something like this:

1) Depend on your best friend, second cousin or a friend of a friend from work who was just married for her experience or advice that she received from the catering manager at the hotel where she was married. Maybe the printed info is still legible since she can’t seem to find the originals on her computer. Let’s hope your plans for the weddings are identical!

2) Quit your job so you will have time to surf through the millions of posts on wedding advice online and determine which posts are the best and most useful (hopefully). Load the advice to your phone, tablet and whatever else you may have so you can have it whenever you need it (if you remember). But which blog advice post do you start with? Then don’t forget the time to interview and hire the vendors for your wedding and, finally, decide upon all the fun details of the wedding! But who has the energy or time now for these?!? Whew!

3) Or you can enroll in the Merrily Wed® Academy and be coached on how to plan your wedding! This one-of-a-kind wedding planning coaching program takes a modern approach to DIY wedding planning consisting of daily lessons, a wedding coach and useful wedding tools and strategies.

Whichever option is ultimately best for you, make sure it is one that sets you up for success from the start, is convenient for your schedule, taps into professional planning experience and can deliver the results you desire!

Happy Wedding Planning!

Tahoe Signature of Style,

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Top 10 Bachelorette Party Destinations |Merrily Wed® Lake Tahoe Weddings

As the summer has sailed, surrender to the oh-so cherished tradition and let the bachelorette parties begin!  Whether your bridal party wants to relax in the sun or dance all night long, we just swooned over these hottest bachelorette party destinations. And we think you will too…

Las Vegas Bachelorette Party Destination, Destination Weddings, Lake Tahoe Weddings,

1. Las Vegas  Not surprised here at all!  This is definitely the number one destination for your ‘maids to soak up some sun from daytime swanky pool parties to fabulous dining and outrageous entertainment.

2. Miami   Think sun-soaked pool parties or white sandy beaches…a perfect place to sip a cocktail or two with your besties.

3. New York City  The Big Apple offers such a variety of sightseeing to incredible cuisine and nightlife.  Your luxurious ladies will definitely love this bach weekend.

4. New Orleans
  Have a bit of a rowdier experience in mind?  Then Bourbon Street is the place to be!  Jazz music, creole cuisine, and truly a party bar scene…this place will not disappoint!

5. Napa Valley
  Okay, so relaxing at world-class spas or drinking wine in style is more your idea of celebrating your upcoming nuptials, then Napa Valley it is.  Gorgeous wine country views coupled with some special girl time…priceless!

6. Austin
  Ahhh, the live music capital of the world, Austin is the perfect destination for the music loving ladies.  Party house boating on Lake Travis is sure to heat up the day!

7. Nashville
  Get your dancin’ boots on and get ready for some of the most iconic bar hopping you will ever experience.  And saddle up for all things country!

Las Vegas Bachelorette Party Destination, Destination Weddings, Lake Tahoe Weddings,

8. Scottsdale
  Beautiful desert weather and transcendent spas provide an ideal setting for a relaxing girls’ getaway.  Lively bars and restaurants in Old Town Scottsdale make place this city on the top ten for sure.

9. Atlantic City   For all our East Coast brides…bask on the beach during the day then try out your lady luck while gambling and dancing at the casino clubs.

10. Chicago 
  This cosmopolitan city has a fantastic restaurant and bar scene.  Lots of alternative activities for your celebration including cooking and art classes, comedy and cabaret shows, burlesque classes and more.

Thanks to Glamour for the inspiration!

Tahoe Signature of Style,

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Martis Camp Mayhem | Merrily Wed® Lake Tahoe Wedding Design

Nah, not really!  A beautiful, sun-kissed and fun-filled wedding at Martis Camp was exactly what transpired last June for Katie and Steve on their wedding day.  They traded vows (and shared a symbolic margarita!) on an overlook above a pine tree filled valley, then danced the night away in front of the red Family Barn.  Their 200 plus guests happily gave their blessings as this playful couple begin their new life together.

Katie & Steve Martis Camp 1

With whites, creams and ivories, the pale and deep mustard yellow made appearances throughout the summer day.  Navy blue Donna Morgan bridesmaid dresses provided the perfect backdrop to the sunny yellow burlap wrapped bouquets.

Katie & Steve Martis Camp 2

With a nod to the Tahoe surroundings, the dining tables sported texturally interesting elements such as birch logettes, twine balls, submerged vines and soft, full florals in wooden boxes.  The stationery suite consisted of kraft paper stamped with a tasteful tree or bear…

Katie & Steve Martis Camp 3

A beautiful three tiered ruffled cake reminiscent of her Judd Waddell gown tempted the guests as they danced nearby in the amphitheatre to the beats of the 11 piece band Hip Service.  The beautiful pale yellow floral linen overlay added the right bit of charm to the area.

Katie & Steve Martis Camp 4

Dusk descended quickly but with just enough time for them to share a laugh and ‘ham it up’ one more time…

Love these guys!

Katie & Steve Martis Camp 5

Thanks to an all star crew such as Damion Hamilton Photography who captured every moment of their big day and the stunning florals created by Bellissima Floral.

Congratulations to Katie and Steve!

Tahoe Signature of Style,

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Crafty Reception Ideas | Merrily Wed® Lake Tahoe Wedding Design

Set your wedding table with your own personalized touch of style from customized hand-written chargers to hand-picked colorful mason jars.  Here at Merrily Wed® we couldn’t resist these 5 options which look like a million bucks but cost almost nothing to make.  Whether choosing three or picking just one idea, they are all an easy way to put your own stylish stamp on your wedding reception!

ruffled blog handwrittenplatesChargers

What a perfect way to share your cherished vows or maybe the words to your favorite wedding song on these sweetly inspired DIY porcelain plates courtesy of Ruffled Blog.  It is a keepsake that will last forever too!

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metallictablenumber ruffled blogTable Numbers

Natural rustic meets the oh-so trendy metallic chalkboard to greet your guests at their tables.  Either adorn a simple weathered wood box or hang from an object of your desire… Also courtesy of Ruffled Blog.

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oncewed rustic cake standWedding Cake Stand/Dessert Buffet Pedestals

A perfect pairing for a Tahoe treat (or two)!  We just loved this woodsy accent to any decadent dessert display.  Once Wed gives the simple step by step instructions on the how-tos!

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100layercake colored mason jarFestive Mason Jars

Put a little pizazz in your wedding decor and elevate the mason jar from cute to irresistible with just a spray of paint by 100LayerCake.  These beauties can be used everywhere!

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Style Me Pretty Ice Cream in a JarJackie Wonders PhotographerIce Cream Favors

To temper the summer heat, show your gratitude for your sweet guests with some ice cream in a jar.  Check out this recipe of thanks from City Cradle Design that had our mouths watering.  With a simple modification you can serve S’Mores in a Jar instead which is always a hit!

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Tahoe Signature of Style,

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