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I have never seen a wedding held here in Ghana where there wasn’t a cake. There are so many beliefs surrounding wedding cakes in Ghana that there has to be one at your wedding.

Typically, at a Ghanaian wedding reception, an elderly woman assists the couple when cutting the cake, after giving a small speech on the significance of the cake and its make-up. After it has been cut, the bride and groom feed each other with it and according to the Ghanaian culture, this signifies a commitment to provide for one another and is also a display of love and affection. The top tier of the cake is also saved in the freezer for about a year and used to celebrate the first year anniversary.

In as much as this is the culture we know and are brought up in, there are certain facts about wedding cakes we know you don’t know and we want to share with you.

1.Cakes were a symbol of fertility

Originally they were made with only wheat (a symbol of fertility and prosperity) and thrown at the bride. Eventually, they became edible, although they were broken over the bride’s head as a symbol of breaking the bride’s virginity and the groom’s dominance over her. (Source:

2.The cutting of the cake with your partner started in the 19th Century

We’ve all seen the newlyweds adopt that cute and sometimes cringy pose as they hold the cake knife together and slowly cut the cake. It all started in the 19th century to represent the first task the pair does together as a married couple. (Source:

3. Wedding cakes were not always white

Queen Victoria was one of the first to have pure white icing on her wedding cake. Processed white sugar was such an expensive ingredient that it was a bit of a status symbol to have your cake made from it. And when cake-loving Queen Vic married Albert, their cake was a huge showstopper covered in white icing unlike the world had ever seen. The rich were quick to copy at their own weddings. (

4.Single bridesmaids put a slice of cake beneath their pillows

Single bridesmaids would take a piece of wedding cake home. It was said that if they placed it under their pillow, they’d dream of their future husband. (Source:

5.The first tiered cake

In 1703 a man named Thomas Rich, a baker’s apprentice, fell in love with his employer’s daughter and asked her to marry him. He wanted to make an extravagant cake, so he drew on St Bride’s Church in London for inspiration. (Source:

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