Outdoor home wedding recipes

Published 8:54 am Thursday, May 31, 2018

Bless This Spoon

By Stephanie Williams Dean


There’s nothing I love more than the magic that’s created by an old-fashioned, outdoor home wedding – such sweet simplicity.  This dreamy, intimate event can never be surpassed by the grand weddings of today. The free spirit of the 70s returns – a throwback to those small alfresco affairs held in the backyard of the couple or their parents. Gracious southern entertaining is about elegance – not extravagant but exquisite. The luscious mocha cake gives nod to the groom – and southern tradition – and is served at the reception. So without further ado or adornment, root out that long forgotten and packed away punch bowl – now making a festive comeback.


18 oz. premium milk or bittersweet chocolate

2/3 cup heavy cream

4 Tbsp. kirsch or brandy

1 Tbsp. instant coffee

Pinch of cinnamon

Assorted fruits such as strawberries, bananas, and pineapple chunks.

Place chocolate and cream in top of double boiler. Set over hot water and heat until chocolate melts and blends with cream. Stir in liqueur, coffee, and cinnamon. Place in a fondue dish or small chafing dish. Serve with fruits. Serves 12.


3 sticks softened, unsalted butter

3 cups sugar

1 2-pound box sifted cake flour

2 Tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

3 ½ cups water

6 large egg whites

2 cups sugar

12 oz. bittersweet chocolate bar pieces

In a mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in sifted flour, baking powder, and salt while alternating with water. Beat egg whites until medium peaks form. Gradually add 2 cups sugar and beat 5 minutes or until thick. Fold whites into the batter a little at a time.  Fold in chocolate pieces. Pour into three greased, 6-9-12-inch cake pans. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 50 minutes or until done. The 12-inch layer may take longer. Cool and refrigerate.

Raspberry Filling

2 18 oz. jars raspberry preserves

5 ½ pints fresh raspberries


2 ¾ pounds premium white chocolate (44 oz.)

8 ½ 8 oz. pkg. softened cream cheese

4 ¼ cups softened, unsalted butter

7 tsp vanilla

1 Tbs. almond extract

Pink paste food coloring

Each cake should be placed on a trimmed cake cardboard. Refrigerate. Slice each cake horizontally into 3 layers. Cover each cake with thin layer of preserves and berries on their sides, leaving a ½ inch border around the edge.  Cover with thin layer of frosting. Repeat layering of preserves, berries, and frosting. Assemble cakes leaving cardboard in place for support.  Frost top and sides of each cake. Refrigerate cakes. Assemble and pipe decorative borders around cakes. Decorate with fresh flowers.


2 sticks softened, unsalted butter

1 ¾ cups of sugar

4 eggs, separated

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate

½ cup water

1 tsp vanilla

2 ¼ cup sifted, all-purpose flour

½ tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

1 cup milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Separate eggs. In a mixer, cream butter and sugar and add egg yolks one at a time. Mix well. Melt chocolate and water in a saucepan until smooth. Cool. Add chocolate mixture and vanilla and mix well. Add sifted dry ingredients alternating with milk. Beat egg whites until stiff. Fold egg whites into cake batter and mix until blended. Divide batter evenly into 3 9 inch cake pans. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 25-30 minutes or until done.

Spread the tops of the bottom and middle layers with mocha filling, reserving some for piping.  Frost with chocolate glaze. With a pastry bag, pipe reserved mocha filling around the base of cake and top. Keep refrigerated until 30 minutes before serving.

Mocha Filling

1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream

1/3 cup cocoa

¼ cup confectioners sugar

2 Tbsp. coffee-flavored liqueur

In a mixer, combine all ingredients and beat until stiff peaks form.

Chocolate Glaze

6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips

2 Tbsp. butter

½ cup heavy whipping cream

In a double boiler, melt chocolate with butter. In a mixer, combine cream with chocolate and butter. Beat until smooth. While warm, spread on top of the cake sides. Double recipe for a two-tier cake. Yield: 12.


1 cup softened, salted butter

1 lb. grated, extra sharp cheddar cheese

2 ½ cups sifted, self-rising flour

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

In a mixer, cream butter, and cheese. Add flour, salt, and pepper.  Fill a cookie press and squeeze straws out on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 20 minutes or until done. Yield: 100 straws.


2 gallons premium vanilla ice cream

1 12 oz. cans thawed orange juice concentrate

1 12 oz. can thawed limeade concentrate

1 large cans pineapple juice

1 large can apricot nectar

1 liters lemon-flavored soft drink

1 liter ginger ale

In punch bowl, break ice cream into pieces.  Mix fruit juices together and add to bowl.  Add lemon-flavored soft drink and stir well. Add ginger ale before serving. To keep cold, you can make an ice ring using ½ gallon ice cream with 1 liter lemon soft drink and freeze. Yield: 30


1 cup softened, salted butter

1/3 cup sugar

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 ¼ cup finely chopped pecans

1/3 cup confectioners sugar

In a mixer, cream butter, sugar, and vanilla. Add flour and mix well.  Fold in pecans. By tablespoons, shape into 1 inch balls. Bake in a 325-degree oven for 20 minutes or until bottoms are golden. Cool slightly Fill a zip bag with confectioners sugar. Add half the balls to the bag and gently roll until thorough coat. Add remainder. Keep stored in sugar. Repeat. Yield: 40 cookies


½ cup butter

1 box confectioners sugar

Pinch of salt

Mint or another extract

¼ cup warm water

In a mixer, cream butter and sugar. Add a pinch of salt. Add flavoring and water until the consistency of stiff icing. Add a flower tip to a cake decorating sleeve and fill with mixture. Press into mints. Let them sit to dry. Should be made a day before. Freezes well. Yield: 150 mints. Use shortening instead of butter for white mints.


1 ½ Tbsp. butter

½ tsp. salt

1 cup sugar

½ tsp cinnamon

¼ cup evaporated milk

¼ cup water

2 ½ cups of premium nut meats

½ tsp vanilla extract

Cook first 6 ingredients to soft ball stage. Add nuts and vanilla. Stir to coat each nut until no excess. Pour onto wax paper. Separate nuts with a fork and allow to harden.

Whether you make or buy a wedding cake, make sure premium ingredients are used. Photo is Rex Ireland tasting samples of wedding cakes made at Publix. For recipe requests, please email blessyourspoon@gmail.com.