A grand recipe for a 'great' cake - and a little history lesson

info@islandpacket.comOctober 24, 2011 

  • Pepperidge Farm frozen Texas Toast

    Stouffer's Chicken A La King, frozen


    Prepare Texas toast and Chicken a La King according to directions directions on the boxes.

    Place toast on plates and serve with the creamed chicken. You can use chicken or shrimp salad, too. This is a quick snack or supper, and it is good. Serve with watermelon pickles or hot pepper jelly.

I am preparing the ingredients for my entry in the baking contest at the S.C. State Fair.

My sister, Catherine, is working on her cake, which is a lemon layer confection. My cake is called a Martha Washington "great cake." The original version called for 40 eggs, 4 pounds of butter, 4 pounds of sugar, 5 pounds of dried fruit, 1 cup of French brandy, 1 cup of Madeira and 5 pounds of flour. The result was gigantic, hence the nickname "great cake."

Miss Martha's cake originally was served on the Twelfth Night Festival, marking the Epiphany. My entry will be a much smaller and scaled-down version without the cup of brandy, although it might help to lighten the judges' moods.

George Washington has always been a hero of mine. I remember when I was in the third grade and how fascinated I was when I learned about his ability to stand such cold weather during all of his battles. Think of how cold his feet, and those of his men, must have been. I can only hope he had some of that brandy-laced cake to nibble on.

So here I am in October 2011 on the verge of delivering, I hope, a bit of history to our capital. Here's to George and Martha and what I trust will be a really "great" cake.

  • Murray Sease has a charming exhibit, titled "Fresh Paint," which will hang through Nov. 5 at the Society of Bluffton Artists' Gallery at the corner of Calhoun and Church streets.

  • Murray has a thriving graphics business and is the mother of a teenager but has somehow found the time to be even more creative. Her paintings are charming, and I'm sure they would look wonderful hanging in your house or office. Stop by to see them before they are all snapped up. Details: 843-757-6586

  • We have a new pottery studio -- Fishbone Gallery on Calhoun Street. Maria Slough has just relocated to Bluffton after spending the past 25 years in Beaufort. Maria designs and creates functional and decorative pieces in her studio, then applies appropriate glazes. Fishbone Gallery also showcases the works of other area artists in a charming shop. Details: 843-757-5020

  • Rotary Club of Okatie will present its annual Polo event Sunday at Rose Hill. The gates open at noon for tailgating picnics and visiting with friends. The game starts promptly at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the gate. Proceeds benefit area charities.

  • These outings are loads of fun and a wonderful way to meet newcomers.

    See you there!

    Babbie Guscio is the social columnist for The Bluffton Packet. She can be reached at The Store on Calhoun Street.

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