Southern Comfort comes in many forms. To me, it’s a measured two-finger shot of that sweet golden brown liquid in a glass that, when sipped, will warm the palate on a cold winter’s night. Or, my Aunt Betty meeting me at her back door with a big hug and “Hi Darlin’, come on in…what can I get you” greeting. She was true down-home comfort and graciousness. Or, the smell of my Aunt Edna’s apron when I wrapped my arms around her belly for a hug – she was my cushion of comfort.
My anitque decanter for my Southern Comfort
I know I said in a previous cake blog that I was giving up cakes for a while, but…I really can’t. I love to bake and I enjoy baking with booze. The warmth of a kitchen and the sweet smell rising from the oven is a comforting feeling. When I bake, it is always a tug at my heart because it connects me with my Mom and Aunt Edna-two very important women in my life.
Mom-far left, Aunt Edna-far right with apron
To share, to offer or to give a cake is a simple gesture. It takes no time- really. It makes your house smell nice and warms you kitchen. It will make the person receiving the cake very happy. It is a way to show you care when the words do not come so easy. At least once in this New Year make a cake for someone. It might be to welcome a new neighbor or, help a family in crisis. Share a cake with someone you care about, just because you can. It does not have to be fancy. It can be really simple. It’s the thought that counts.
This cake is one I made for a colleague’s birthday. I found the recipe in a box on a shelf. I am not sure where it came from. The recipe was typed and the paper it was on was yellowed and brittle. It is called “Queen Elizabeth’s Cake.” I thought it was appropriate to bake this cake for my friend because she had been to London recently. While there she purchased a very pretty pink tea-towel for me as a token of that trip. It had a decorative crown on it with the words “Royal Occasion.” Here is the recipe, as was typed on the paper-you will see my comments and notes in parenthesis as you read the recipe.
Queen Elizabeth’s Cake
This is supposed to be the only cake that the Queen makes herself. She goes into her own kitchen to stir this up. (Seriously? I can’t imagine the Queen doing that…can you?)
Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 1 cup chopped dates and 1 tsp soda.
Let stand while the following is mixed in the usual manner.
1 cup sugar and ¼ cup butter, creamed
1 beaten egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 ½ cup sifted flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
½ cup nuts ( I did not use nuts)
Above mixture should be added to the date mixture and baked 35 minutes in a moderate oven in a 9” x 12” pan. (A moderate oven to me is 350°- I used two round 8” cake pans to make a layer cake because I wanted to try the icing. Don’t be afraid to try different size cake pans.)
5 tbsp. brown sugar
5 tbsp. cream
2 tbsp. butter
Boil 8 minutes (stirring constantly) and spread on cake and sprinkle with nuts or coconut.
(Note: I happened to be drinking some Southern Comfort as I was baking…so I added a splash to the icing as I stirred it. I might have splashed some in the cake mix too. I drizzled the icing on my first layer and threw on some shredded coconut. I drizzled more icing on the top layer and topped the cake with toasted shredded coconut.
NOTE: This recipe is not to be passed on, but must be sold for charitable purposes for 50 cents. (This note was really on the recipe. I’m breaking the rules here – I’m passing this on and I will put more than 50 cents towards my favorite charity.)