Category Archives: Flours

Citrus Berry Naked Cake

Citrus Berry Naked Cake

I am not from the South, so I never knew there were varying degrees of nakeness! A few years after moving to my adopted home state of Tennessee, a kind and sweet as back porch iced tea, Southern, young-at-heart friend explained that there most certainly are.  

“Now dear, there’s “naked” and then there’s “nekked,” she explained with an oh so lovely drawl that toggled on that line between sincerity and syrupy sweet Southern sarcasm. There was no mistaking here, she was down right serious. She continued, “naked is when you don’t have clothes on, and nekked, well…nekked, is when you don’t have clothes on and you’re doin’ something you’re not supposed to be doin’!” I am not exactly sure when the snorting laughter ensued, but at one point I had tears in my eyes from laughing so hard and distinctly remember thinking that her explanation made perfect sense.  That is the moment my friends, I knew I was a Southerner at heart.Citrus Barry Naked Cake (4)

The moment I began thinking of making this recipe for you all, I thought of this story and knew this cake had to be the perfect combination of “naked” and “nekked.” Classic enough to be presentable, but with just a bit of sass to make you wonder! A cake where you can see all of the beautiful baked cake layers, stacked high with perfect pillowing frosting peeking through and crowned with an indecent amount of seasonal fruit.

Sweetie Pies

Sweetie Pies

Okay, remember that one time at 1 am when you were scouring Pinterest to find the perfect Valentine treat for your sweet and thought to yourself, that would be adorable! Well, not so adorable in the light of day after wasting a perfectly good pie crust and praying to the kitchen Gods that mason jars are indeed oven safe despite of any actual written confirmation of that on the packaging. While thankfully the jars didn’t explode into a million shards of glass under the scrutiny of a 400°F oven, the pie in a mason jar idea did not fair so well in the taste and execution department. Adorable? Yes. Tasty? Not so much.

I have been baking all of my life and rarely find myself in the midst of epic failures and this was certainly one of them, and I am so grateful for it. Quite often our inspirations germinate from mishaps. They are opportunities to learn and recreate. This Pinterest fail, along with a mild obsession of all things mason jars, bring us here today, to these adorable Sweetie Pies layered with perfect pie crust and a beautifully balanced sweet-tart berry filling! I made them for all of my loves at home and I hope you will make them for yours.

My Perfect Pie Crust

My Perfect Pie Crust

Flour. Butter. Sugar. Salt. Water. These are the basic ingredients that you need to make a perfect pie crust. While the ingredients may appear simple in nature, the magic happens in the ratio of the ingredients and the techniques used.

Pie was never my thing. I have been more a tart fiend, than a pie fanatic. But that has changed in recent years, especially since our family moved to Nashville, ya’ll! I have loved discovering just how pie is interwoven into the southern culture, much like those lovely lattice topped pies you see adorning a southern table. Never one to shy away from a baking adventure, I grabbed my apron and pastry cutter and set out to create my perfect crust. I think I have it here friends, and it works out beautifully in these Sweetie Pies and Cookie Pie Cuties.

Vanilla Wafers

Vanilla Wafers

We all at some point have had the ubiquitous vanilla wafer, more than likely it was probably half disintegrated in some version of a banana pudding.  I have always found the name ill fitting.  To my mind they should have been called Nonillas as they never truly taste like real vanilla; and that belly that protrudes up is certainly not reminiscent of the lightness associated with a wafer.  It was time for a makeover! 

Genoise

Genoise

In 1892 Grover Cleveland is elected President of United States, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle publishes The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Thomas Edison receives a patent for a two-way telegraph and most pertinent to this particular post, it is also when the genoise cake was reportedly born. That is over a hundred years of bakers throwing their hands up in surrender and waving their white kitchen towel in a show of defeat and utter frustration. That, my friends, ends today. You will learn how to make the perfect genoise which will then be used in a stunning Fraiser cake.