I noticed in Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Plunges into the Presidency (I was giving my son a bath, which entails waiting while he tries to empty the tub with his splashing!) that one of George Washington’s favorite desserts was his wife’s whiskey cake. This interested me because I recently made a whiskey cake that my own husband just adored. So I set out to find Martha’s recipe. I found this recipe for a “great cake” from Mount Vernon:
Take 40 eggs and divide the whites from the yolks & beat them to a froth then work 4 pounds of butter to a cream & put the whites of eggs to it a Spoon full at a time till it is well work'd then put 4 pounds of sugar finely powderd [sic] to it in the same manner then put in the Youlks [sic] of eggs & 5 pounds of flower [sic] & 5 pounds of fruit. 2 hours will bake it add to it half an ounce of mace & nutmeg half a pint of wine & some frensh [sic] brandy."
I think I’ll stick with my recipe!
I’m going to include another Martha recipe, this one from The First Ladies Cookbook.
1 qt milk, scalded
½ cup cold milk
½ cup sugar
¼ tsp vanilla or almond extract
Scald 1 quart milk; add ½ cup sugar, and a pinch of salt. Beat 6 whole eggs and add cold milk to them. Stir, and gradually add to the hot milk mixture. Cook in top double boiler until custard coast the spoon. When cold, add the flavoring.
Now there are some recipes to try for Christmas!