I'm making the Martha Stewart recipe in Baking with Julia for a friend's wedding. The recipe says that the cake can be refrigerated up to one day after it is decorated. The buttercream is a standard recipe that has a butter/sugar ratio of 2.25 by weight. The cake is described as dense, almost a poundcake: 9.5 oz almond paste, 9 oz butter, 7.1 oz sugar, 10.5 oz eggs, 4.5 oz cake flour.
Before decorating the cake layers can be refrigerated two days, or frozen for one month. The same for the buttercream. The meringue can be make a few days in advance.
What kind of timeframe do you recommend for advance preparation of the components? I don't want things to get too hectic last minute, but I also want a good result.
I have to drive about 1 hour, and the reception will be indoors in a room with air conditioning. How long before serving should I take the cake out of the refrigerator and how long will it keep?