I was amazed recently when I found the 1934 Home Economics Cooking School program from Lexington, Ky. I have no idea where I got this one, but it was certainly interesting. The menu for this class included macaroni rings, Yale beets (I didn’t realize that Harvard Beets had a competitor), Economy Cocoa Cake, Roquefort Bites, Baked Beef Liver Loaf, Lovely Rice Dessert, French Fried Onions, A cup of Good Tea, and Brown Sugar and Raisin Refrigerator Biscuits.
The recipe for Roquefort Bites was quite amusing. It simply states, “Mash Roquefort or cream cheese, moistening with cream. Spread on potato chips and use as appetizers.”
Another recipe that I found on my culinary treasure hunt was for an old-fashioned layer cake. Many years ago at a food demonstration in Anniston, I met a gentleman who asked if I had a recipe for orange cake that used a lot of orange juice. I told him that I would check my files and if I found one, I would send it to him. It has taken me until recently to find a recipe that might be what he was wanting.
Of course, before I shared the recipe for California Orange Layer Cake, I wanted to try it. When reading over the recipe, I noticed that it needed a few minor corrections.
I wasn’t so sure about the made-from-scratch layers, because some made from older recipes are not always tender and moist. I was thrilled with the texture, although the layers did not rise as high as those made from a mix. Overall, this is a delicious cake.
CALIFORNIA ORANGE LAYER CAKE
2/3 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 cups sifted cake flour (sift before measuring)
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup water
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease and lightly flour 2 9-inch cake pans or 3 8-inch cake pans. Cream together the shortening and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Combine orange juice and water and add to creamed mixture alternately with the flour mixture. Beat only until well blended. Spoon into pans and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into center of layers. Remove from pans to rack for cooling.
6 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 egg yolk (save the white for the frosting)
1 cup orange juice
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/4 teaspoon grated orange peel
Combine sugar and cornstarch in top of double boiler. Stir to mix. Add egg yolk but don’t stir in yet. Gradually add the orange juice, stirring the yolk into the sugar mixture. Place over boiling water and cook for about 10 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently. Remove from water and stir in butter and grated orange peel. When completely cooled, spread between layers.
7/8 cup sugar (1 cup minus 2 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon grated orange peel
Dash of salt
1 egg white
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
Combine sugar, corn syrup, orange peel, salt, egg white and orange juice in top of double boiler. Mix well. Cook over rapidly boiling water and beat continually with rotary beater 6 to 7 minutes until soft peaks form. Remove from heat and add lemon juice. Continue beating until of spreading consistency. Spread over top and sides of cake.