The Girl Who Chased the Moon Recipes
Julia's Traditional Southern Cakes

Hummingbird Cake

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups granulated sugar
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 eggs, beaten
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 can (8oz) crushed pineapple, well drained
1 cup chopped pecans
2 cups chopped firm ripe banana

Sift flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and cinnamon together. Add eggs and oil to the dry ingredients. Stir with a wooden spoon until ingredients are moistened. Stir in vanilla, pineapple and pecans. Stir in the bananas last. Spoon the batter into three greased and floured 9-inch round cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in 350 degree oven, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting with cream cheese frosting.

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

1 pound cream cheese, softened
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a standing mixer, mix the cream cheese, sugar, and butter on low speed until ingredients combine. Increase the speed to high, and mix until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low. Add the vanilla, raise the speed to high and mix.

 

Southern Peach Pound Cake

1 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups fresh peaches, pitted and chopped

Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Reserve 1/4 cup of flour for later, and sift together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually stir into the creamed mixture. Use the reserved flour to coat the chopped peaches, then fold the floured peaches into the batter. Spread evenly into a 10 inch tube pan that has been buttered and coated with white sugar. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes in 325 degree oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Allow cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Traditional Southern Red Velvet Cake

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 ½ cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 Tablespoons red food coloring (1 ounce)
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
chopped pecans for garnish

Lightly oil and flour three 9-inch round cake pans. Sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In another bowl, whisk together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla. Using a standing mixer, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until batter is smooth. Divide the cake batter evenly among the prepared cake pans. Bake in 350 degree oven, rotating the pans halfway through the cooking, until the cake pulls away from the side of the pans, and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cakes comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Remove the cakes from pans and onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely. Frost with cream cheese frosting and sprinkle with pecans.

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

1 pound cream cheese, softened
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a standing mixer, mix the cream cheese, sugar, and butter on low speed until ingredients combine. Increase the speed to high, and mix until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low. Add the vanilla, raise the speed to high and mix.

 

Lane Cake

For cake:
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
8 egg whites

For filling:
1/2 cup butter
1 1/4 cups white sugar
8 egg yolks
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon brandy flavoring
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup candied cherries, chopped
1/2 cup flaked coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease and flour four 8 inch round cake pans. Cream 1 cup of the butter or margarine, 2 cups of the white sugar, and vanilla together until light and fluffy. Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to the butter mixture in three parts alternately with the milk in two parts, beginning and ending with flour. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter. Spread the batter evenly into the four prepared pans. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool. Once cool spread Lane Cake Filling between layers and frost with Butter Frosting.

To Make Lane Cake Filling: Put 1/2 cup of the butter or margarine and 1-1/4 cups of the white sugar into the top of a double boiler away from the heat. Beat together. Add egg yolks and beat well. Stir in water and brandy flavoring. Place over boiling water. Cook and stir until thickened. Add pecans, raisins, cherries and coconut. Stir filling until all ingredients are well combined. Remove from heat. Allow filling to cool before spreading between cooled cake layers.

BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a large bowl, cream the butter until smooth. Add the powdered sugar, salt, milk, and vanilla and mix until smooth and creamy.

 

DRIED APPLE STACK CAKE

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, well beaten
1/3 cup molasses
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
Cooked dried apples

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream shortening and sugar; add beaten egg, molasses, buttermilk, and mix well. Sift flour, soda, salt, and ginger into a big mixing bowl. Make hole in center of dry ingredients and pour in creamed mix, stirring until well blended. Add vanilla, stir well, and roll out dough as you would for a piecrust. Cut to fit 9-inch pan or cast-iron skillet (this amount of dough will make 7 layers). Bake layers for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly browned. When cool, stack layers with spiced, sweetened old-fashioned dried apples. (See recipe below.) Spread between layers and smooth around sides and top. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired, or beat egg whites into a meringue and spread on outside of cake. You may brown the meringue if desired. Prepare cake at least a day before serving it and put in refrigerator (it will keep several days, if necessary, in a cool place). To serve, slice into very thin layers.

Cooked Dried Apples*

Put 1 pound apples in heavy pan and cover with cold water. You may need to add water several times to keep apples from sticking to pan. Cook until soft enough to mash. While still hot, mash apples and add 1 cup brown sugar, 1 cup white sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon cloves, and 1 teaspoon allspice.

*If dried apples are not available, cook several pounds cooking apples with a little water. Add spices and sugars as listed above, and cook until mixture is very thick.

(From Appalachian Heritage Literary Quarterly)