Friday, November 23, 2007

Ladies...Start Your Ovens!!!

So Thanksgiving is over and the Christmas insanity begins. We actually ended up going to the Officer's Club at Ft. Lee instead of the mess hall for Thanksgiving Dinner. It was unbelievably good. I was so happy to not be cooking or doing dishes that I didn't even mind waiting in the buffet line. The kids behaved themselves, which seems to be new development for them, and we made it home in time to get the kids in bed early and watch some "mindless television" as Dr. Daddy loves to call it.
For three generations, the ladies in my family have had a holiday tradition of baking Sherry Cakes for friends, neighbors, teachers, and work colleagues. I remember one year my mother made 59 of these delicious, delectible cakes. The recipe is one that came from my father's mother and it is divine. It's very simple and comes out of the oven so moist it melts in your mouth. My grandmother started the tradition and would bake the cakes for weeks before Christmas, freeze them, and then deliver them the week of Christmas. She and my mother always wrapped them in aluminum foil and put a bow on top. I have continued the tradition but found a way to jazz up the packaging a bit. I always order beautiful monogrammed cake boxes from Williams-Sonoma to place the cakes in for delivery. This year, however, Williams-Sonoma has totally screwed me over (I'm sure it wasn't personal but I'm certainly taking it personally!) by not selling the large cake boxes in packages of 4. You have to by a combination of several different sizes and shapes. I called the company and they assure me they've had multiple complaints to no avail. Get with the program, people! Don't you know I have gifting to do?
Luckily, I've found a new supplier. And, they're cheaper! Baking Boxes has the boxes in stock and the red boxes are on sale for $12.99 for 4. Originally, I was going to do chocolate brown boxes with a cute coordinating sticker but when I realized the red was on sale I had to change my tune.

So, I've ordered my red cake boxes and this adorable Boatman Gellar sticker with red font. To make the deal even sweeter, the company I ordered the stickers from has amazing prices. 48 stickers for $38 including shipping. This is almost half the price of anywhere else I looked. Click on the bold "Boatman Gellar" above to go directly to the page on their site that I used to order mine.

I'm psyched about the Zebra print because first of all, I love animal prints and secondly, it perfectly coordinates with the Christmas cards I'm using.

I decided to go with this picture taken by the fabulous Stefanie Weber.

Now all I have to do is decorate! This is no small task in our house. I have trees in each of the kids' rooms as well as in the formal living room and sun room. All full sized trees. And, now that I know for certain that my family is coming for Christmas I need to finish decorating our guest room!!!

Finally, THE RECIPE. I promise, you're going to LOVE IT.

Mom's Sherry Cake

1 box yellow cake mix (I told you this was going to be easy!)
1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup pale dry sherry
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. nutmeg
4 eggs
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I use a food processor to pulverize mine into a kind of paste. I don't like the texture of nuts in my food but I love the flavor so this is a good compromise)

Mix all together - about five minutes. Bake in a bundt pan at 350 degrees for about an hour or until a toothpick in the middle comes out clean. YOU HAVE TO USE A BUNDT PAN!!! No exceptions. :) Not that I'm a control freak or anything...

This cakes freezes beautifully and tastes great re-warmed with a side of vanilla ice cream.

Happy Baking!


Steph said...

Thanks for sharing the recipe! I may have to copy you and do a few for neighbors too!

sle said...

Would that be a 350 degree oven?

The Doctor's Wife said...

Yes! 350 degrees. Not sure how I managed to leave that important tid bit out!

kari said...

The cake sounds yummy, I'll definately have to try it. Thanks for the recipe.

The Mrs. said...

Love the zebra cards!!!!

Happy Homemaker said...

Thanks for the recipe! I love using boxed cake mix! Love everything you picked out, mee-owww!

lizziefitz said...

Hi, would you mind sharing your source for the o' so fabulous christmas cards? Thanks:)

kristy said...

what a fun and totally festive christmas card. i love it! and the photo you've selected is perfect!

lizziefitz said...

Would it be possible to find out the source of your o so chic zebra Christmas cards?

The Doctor's Wife said...

The cards are by and adorable company named Sharp & Sally.

lizziefitz said...

Thanks so much. It was friday of sippy cups at our house! Zebra cards so excited and...Sherry cake DELICIOUS! All you bloggers out there, make!