Sunday, May 03, 2009

Jelly Cake

No picture does this one justice. I originally got the recipe out of the Chicago Tribune Wednesday Food Section, from Kathy Starr's The Soul of Southern Cooking. It is reprinted with a picture in Southern Cakes, by Nancie McDermott, one of my favorite modern cookbooks.

There is a picture in there of a three layer jelly cake with raspberry or strawberry jelly oozing down the sides. Frankly, mine never looks like that. It sticks to the pan like no other cake I've made. I use Pam, butter, and flour and have tried all types of pans, too. No matter, though, my parents, sons, husband and I can eat this one with forks out of the 9X13 glass pan - without topping - it's that good.

I have used jelly on it, or powdered sugar or even chocolate frosting for some of my Mother's birthdays. It's her favorite of the cakes I've introduced her to. It is more than delicious. She's been telling me which recipes to include in her tribute week now, and we both knew this one would be on here.

Mississippi Delta Jelly Cake
1 tsp. salt
3 1/2 cups sifted flour, preferably cake flour (Yes, sifted cake flour. Trust me, it works.)
Dash of baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks) plus 1 tsp. butter, softened
2 2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup milk
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar

Preheat the oven to 325F.

Combine the sale with 2 2/3 cups flour in a bowl and mix with fork. Combine the baking soda, baking powder and remaining flour in a small bowl.

Cream the butter, sugar, and oil with a mixer until creamy. Add eggs, beating for 2 minutes. Stir in the flour-salt mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the milk. Gently fold in the flour-baking soda mixture.

Bake for 25 - 30 minutes. Cool in the pans. Combine the confectioners' sugar and jelly with a fork. Spread on the top of the cake layers, if you do it that way. Do not ice the sides.



Dexter said...

I have tried to make this cake twice now and both times the cake has cratered and did not bake in the allotted time. I used sifted cake flour first and all-purpose flour the second time. I even bought new pans for the second attempt. Any ideas what went wrong? Oven has been calibrated.

Amy said...

I'm so sorry this happened. I've never tried anything but the sifted cake flour. Maybe a bit more baking powder and soda? Do you live in the Chicago area? I know sometimes altitudes can hurt cakes.

Sarah Debraski did a post for me this week where she used half the recipe in a smaller pan. That may be something else to try, and baking for a few more minutes.

Ann said...

America's Test Kitchen had something about cakes cooking too fast on the outside and cratering, but I can't remember what they said, so maybe Google. Off the top of my head, try those cake bands that people put on the outside of cake pans so the cakes bake level. You could increase the baking soda to a teaspoon, or half a teaspoon. Try adding a tablespoon of vinegar to the milk, and let it sit a few minutes. It will sour the milk, and make more gas from the leveners.
I'll bookmark this page, and if I see tge show again, I'll write their answer. It's bugging me now.

Ann said...

I remember what they said on America's Test Kitchen. Use a dull pan, not a shiny one. The shiny ones don't heat up in the middle fast enough. I usually use Wilton 9" round cake pans, the deeper ones, I think they are 2". Also, 325 is a little low. Most recipes call for 350. Try that and see if it helps.