At the recent Dairy-Deli-Bake expo in Houston, sponsored by the International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association, Rebecca Woodward was named champion of the 15th annual Cake Decorating Challenge. Woodward has been a decorator for Harp’s Food Stores, Lincoln, Ark., for more than four years. Tina Lofthus from Town & Country Markets, Poulsbo, Wash., placed second and Sara Vanderheyden, Hy-Vee Food Stores, Nevada, Iowa, finished third.
The competition was held during all three days of the show with each day marking a different challenge. On the first day, the competitors decorated enough cakes to fill one three-tier, 8-ft. bakery case. The cakes ranged from a variety of dessert cakes to decorated cupcakes and cakes to cupcake pull-apart cakes.
On the second day, each competitor decorated a three-tier wedding cake. The cakes varied in theme, but each featured a separation element between at least two of the layers, a growing trend in wedding cakes and a departure from the stacked cakes that have proven popular in recent years.
On the third and final day of the competition, the competitors decorated one cake for each of three categories: decorator’s choice, special occasion and theme/event. All three decorators chose to decorate their theme/event cake to honor the expo’s Houston location.
The 16th annual Cake Decorating Challenge will be held June 5-7, 2011, in Anaheim, Calif.