A new cookbook, At My Grandmother’s Knee, which I had the pleasure of reviewing, celebrates food, family, and warm memories. It’s filled with 166 treasured recipes shared by Southern women who inherited them from their grandmothers, along with special memories about the grandmothers who made these delicious comfort foods. Author Faye Porter describes the book as part cookbook and part history book. “It captures the love and guidance that so many of us soaked up from watching and listening to and asking questions of our Southern grandmothers as we helped them prepare a meal or bake for some special occasion,” says Porter. “Recipes allow us to pass on the love and legacy of a grandma so she can be remembered, revered, and celebrated for generations to come.”
The nostalgic-looking book includes full-color photos of many of the recipes. There’s a wonderful variety of Southern classics to choose from–Biscuits ‘n’ Chocolate Gravy, Nanny’s Hash Brown Casserole, Southern-Style Chili, Sweet Slaw, Spicy Sweet Potaotes, Dixie Meat Loaf, Creamed Chicken on Cornbread, Peach Cream Pie, Lemon Tea Cakes, Grandmother Kelly’s Chocolate Pie…and so many other great-sounding recipes! I decided to try Lizzie’s Sour Cream Pound Cake because I love pound cake and had not made one yet with sour cream…it sounded so rich and good!
Well, it was very rich and very good–dense and moist like a classic pound cake should be. I guess we should expect no less from a grandma-tested recipe! 🙂 Here’s Lizzie’s recipe, along with a special memory from the cookbook:
LIZZIE’S SOUR CREAM POUND CAKE (From At My Grandmother’s Knee)
Arlene Raines (Goodlettsville, Tennessee) shares that her grandma, Mary Elizabeth Redding Hughes, was affectionately known as Lizzie. “Lizzie and her husband owned and worked a 300-acre farm in Naylor, Georgia,” Arlene says. “She was the quintessential countrywoman who raised her children, worked the fields, cooked for the farmhands, sewed her children’s clothing, and kept the house. My grandmother was a wonderful cook and one of my favorite things was this pound cake. The entire farmhouse would smell wonderful while it was baking, and the cake only became more delicious each day that it sat under a glass cover on the kitchen table. Grandma Lizzie died in 1986 at the age of ninety-seven, but she is remembered in a specialway each year at our family reunion because her pound cake is always on the menu.”
- 2 sticks butter, softened
- 3 cups sugar
- 6 large eggs, at room temperature
- 3 cups all-pirpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 8-ounce container sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar. Add 1 egg at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the flour mixture to the batter and beat thoroughly. Add the sour cream, vanilla, and lemon extract and beat thoroughly. The secret is to beat lots and lots of air into the batter. Pour the batter into a greased and floured 10-inch tube pan.
Bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (NOTE: my cake was done sooner-in 1 hour and 20 minutes, so you may want to check yours sooner, too). Cool before slicing.
This tastes great served with fresh fruit, like some nice juicy strawberries!
Now I’m ready to try the Spicy Sweet Potatoes…you can never have too much comfort food, right? 🙂