Burlesque Baking isn’t the most obvious incarnation of the art form, but that’s all set to change thanks to Charlotte White. She has just released a cookbook inspired by the very best burlesque dancers including Immodesty Blaize, Cherry Shakewell and Tempest Rose among others… It puts a whole other spin on ‘Cheesecake‘.
Burlesque Baking with Charlotte White
How did ‘Burlesque baking’ come together for you? For me, burlesque represents glamour turned up to 11 and I am always striving to create truly glamorous bakes. I like to decorate cakes that are ever so slightly over the top and the sparkle and shimmer of burlesque was a natural source of inspiration for me.
How did you get to this burlesque bakery point in your career? I’ve always baked and started up Restoration Cake in 2009. At the time, I was an Exec PA. Cake decorating started off as a hobby and then I started being asked to make wedding cakes for friends and it quickly became an addiction.
I realised that I had found a vocation which would allow me to work with couples getting married. To get all excited about their big day with them and then make them a fabulous cake to celebrate with. It’s the best job in the world!
Then I was asked if I would like to teach others how to decorate their own cakes and I started writing how-to articles for magazines and blogs. Last year, I was approached by my publisher Ryland Peters & Small and now it seems I am an author!
How much research did you do? I did quite a lot of research for Burlesque Baking. There were some names that I knew I wanted to include, both well-known names and friends of mine!
I researched their different costumes and routines to find the best ones to translate into icing. I was lucky enough to meet some new performers, who ended up in the book, by attending the London Burlesque Festival.
What’s been the reaction to your burlesque bakery? From the community and the world alike? I have had some lovely feedback on the book. Firstly, from the performers who are featured in the book… They were sent advanced copies and I had some fab tweets and messages from the ladies…
And from the public, who have been kind enough to tweet and send me messages on Facebook. The book has some great reviews coming through on Amazon and got an amazing write-up on The Telegraph website, which made my day!
What makes the perfect ‘burlesque’ cake? And what elements of a performance inspire your work? The perfect burlesque cake is never knowingly under-dressed. It is not afraid of colour or ashamed to be adorned with pearls and glitter.
I take the best part of my inspiration from costume and fashion. The beautiful dressing of a delicious cake is not unlike the dressing of a performer.
British Bake Off. Please discuss. I was invited to speak on GBBO as an expert! I am a history buff and have an interest in the homefront during World War II.
I find that period of history fascinating and completely inclusive as so many of our families have grandparents or great-grandparents who experienced these times. I was asked to speak about the provision of bread during the war. It was a huge privilege to appear on my favourite baking show!
What would Burlexe look and taste like as a cake? It would have to be big and bold… I’d want to bring in an element of that hot pink that you love so much!
I don’t think a Burlexe cake could be too much of a good things. So, I’m thinking black lace over hot pink, adorned with bling and topped with black sugar roses and a few feathers for good measure. One thing’s for sure… It will be delicious!
(Main images of Charlotte by Chris White and Lisa Jane Brown)