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Spanish Sherry Cake

-----Original Message----- 
From: suzan
Sent: Saturday, June 27, 2015 12:07 PM
Subject: Spanish Sherry Cake

Hello! Thx for helping us find lost recipes that remind us of good times!

In the 1980s, I made a wonderfully rich, decadent Spanish Sherry Cake. The 
recipe was from a magazine (BH&G, Hanover House?) that also published 
cookbooks. The recipe called for a cubed pound cake that was first soaked in 
a Madeira and/or Marsala. Next, a filling consisting of mostly egg yolks, 
minced pecans, and sugar was cooked on the stove to a desired consistency. 
As the soaked cake cubes were layered in a bundt pan, the pecan mixture was 
drizzled on and around the cubes. Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream was 
served with the cake to cut (?) the sweetness. This recipe is straight 
forward and results in a beautiful, memorable dessert.

I hope you can find the recipe! I've searched for years!



Hello Suzan,

I can find only one mention of a "Spanish Sherry Cake" recipe. It sounds a lot like your description, but it's not exactly from a magazine. It was published in a newspaper, "The Southend Reporter from Chicago, Illinois" on January 13, 1977. The problem is that the recipe is on a newspaper archive site that is subscription only, and which charges a fee for subscribing. I am not a member. If you aren't a member they give a brief synopsis of the text, but it has scrambled text and is not usable. It's just enough so that you can tell that it's the recipe. If you want to get the correct text of the recipe, you have to subscribe.
The site is:

January 13, 1977
Southend Reporter from Chicago, Illinois · Page 25

"This Spanish Sherry cake will look and taste inviting enough for your best dinner party. 1% cups sugar % cup water % cup Duff Gordon Santa Maria Cream Sherry 1!£ quarts pound cake cubes (one 12 oz cake) % cup pecan halves 4 egg yolks 1 teaspoon almond extract (optional) !4 teaspoon salt . Combine sugar and water in saucepan. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes. Cool. Combine half the syrup with Sherry and cake cubes, tossing lightly just to mix. Grind pecans in electric blender or nut grinder. Add pecans, egg yolks, almond extract and salt to remaining half of syrup. Heat, stirring often over medium heat just until begins to bubble, about 5 minutes To assemble cake, layer M c '·- cube mixture in bottom of buttered '1-quart fancy mo. ip with % pecan mixture. Repeat layering twice, fc =u 350 degrees for I hour or until top is golden and t y. Cool % hour then loosen sides with knife and invert i \e onto plate. Cover with cake dome or transparent wra; Sea ton for several hours or overnight (cake develops fi.vur as it ages; it may even be held for two or three dajs before serving). Serve with puffs of whipped cream, decorating top with additional pecans and some chocolate curls if desired. "


> -----Original Message----- 
> From: suzan
> Sent: Sunday, June 28, 2015 3:29 PM
> To: Phaedrus
> Subject: Re: Spanish Sherry Cake
> Wow! This looks like the recipe! I remember it had headers and footers on two facing pages. 
Hmmmm... I am not a subscriber, but will check with our local library. (We live in a rural 
area and they subscribe to all types of "different" databases.) The info you provided is a 
tremendous jump start --  will let you know the outcome. Thx!

On Sun, Jun 28, 2015 at 1:30 PM, Phaedrus wrote:

Hi Gwen,

Can you get this recipe? It appears to have been in the January 13, 1977 edition of the Chicago, Illinois “Southend Reporter” newspaper. Below is the scrambled version that non-subscribers get from


Hi Phaed,

Lovely to hear from you! I hope all is well. I did not find that recipe in that newspaper, 
but I did in another from the same year. See the attached pdf file. Additionally, I found 
the following news article, which as you can see is only slightly, slightly different. 

Desserts: the professionals tell all - He's ocean-going chef
San Diego Union-Tribune, The (CA) (Published as Evening Tribune (San Diego, CA)) - November 7, 1984
Byline: Linda Susan Dudley
Edition: 1,2,3
Section: FOOD
Page: FOOD-1

In San Diego Food circles mention chef Ben Patterson and then say the word "desserts." Almost always, someone will answer, 
"sherry cake," a tempting mosaic of golden and brown. Patterson devised the rich, dense concoction while he was the chef 
at the Perfect Pan in Mission Hills in 1977 and 1978. It was then, during the cook shop's infancy, when Patterson prepared 
the food for intimate luncheons for 12 -- so popular were they that there was often a three-month waiting list. The sherry 
cake, Patterson said in an interview, was his most requested recipe. It is published here for what is believed to be the 
first time. Patterson believes a dessert is an integral part of a meal and suggests the sherry cake as an excellent addition 
to a festive holiday feast. "I also serve dessert at a dinner party. I don't feel the host has a responsibility to count 
the guests' calories, yet I'm not offended if a guest chooses not to eat it, and I also don't mind serving seconds," 
Patterson said. Dessert is just one of the categories where Patterson, 52, is allowed to shine in his current position, 
one he calls "my dream job." He is the chef on a 65-foot Stephens yacht that is home-ported here when it isn't sailing 
off to the Mexican Riviera or up to British Columbia for about six months of the year. Lest one picture Patterson trying 
to make do in a cramped shipboard cooking area, he says the galley has "better equipment than my home kitchen." And 
Patterson uses it all. Even if he is just cooking for the woman who is the ship's owner and the crew, he prepares a 
gourmet dinner every night. For example, while off the Canadian coast he might have a freshly caught salmon, which he 
would wrap in dill crepes and then in brioche to form a loaf. It was only a decade ago that Patterson changed his life 
dramatically with a mid-life career change from theater arts management (he was in on the ground floor at both UCSD and 
UC Berkeley) to cooking professionally. "I had always been a dedicated amateur chef; always cooking and entertaining," 
said Patterson, a whisper of his South Carolina upbringing still in his deep voice. It was a change for the better, 
straightening out some problems and boosting his health. And it brought him to his dream job. "I love my boss, and I 
love my work; I get to prepare all the dishes which would be too expensive for me to make at home," Patterson said. 
But if you can catch him ashore in his Mission Hills cottage, he'll probably have a sherry cake in the freezer to fill 
the many requests for his popular sweet. Patterson stressed that all of the alcohol in the sherry cooks out of the cake, 
leaving only the vivid flavor.

Sherry Cake 

1 1/2 pounds leftover pound cake (or 2 10 3/4 -ounce frozen pound cakes or large homemade loaf pound cake)
3 cups granulated sugar 
1 1/2 cups water 
1 1/2 cups cream sherry 
1 1/2 cups shelled pecans 
8 egg yolks 
1 tablespoon almond extract 
1/2 teaspoon salt 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut pound cake into one-inch cubes and place in a large bowl. Combine sugar and water in 
a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered 10 minutes. Cool to room temperature. 
Combine one cup of syrup with sherry and sprinkle on cake cubes. Grind pecans until powdery in a food processor or blender. 
Add to remaining syrup along with egg yolks, almond extract and salt. Mix well and stir over medium heat until mixture 
bubbles. Spray a 1 1/2 -quart ring baking mold (a Kugelhopf is a decorative choice) with no-stick cooking spray. Layer 
one-third of pecan mixture, then a third of the cake mixture. Repeat twice. Bake one hour at 350 degrees or until top 
is golden brown and crusty. Cool 30 to 40 minutes. Loosen sides with knife and invert cake onto serving plate. Cover with 
plastic wrap and allow to season overnight at room temperature. Serve in small wedges. Freezes well or can be stored at 
room temperature for up to a week. Serve with scoop of French vanilla ice cream. Makes 12 to 18 pieces.


Good Housekeeping Pork Chops with Pears, Horseradish, and Mustard

From: Carol 
Sent: Tuesday, June 30, 2015 8:34 PM
Subject: Recipe From Good Housekeeping Magazine

Dear Uncle Phaedrus,
I am trying to locate a recipe I lost years ago. It was from a Good Housekeeping Magazine circa 1983? 
It was a sauce for pork chops on the grill. It contained a small can of pears in heavy syrup, horseradish 
sauce, mustard and that is all I remember. All the ingredients were blended together and then basted on 
the pork chops as they grilled. It was rather thick. Like applesauce. I do not remember any of the portions, 
I have tried the internet years ago and have never had any luck.

Hi Carol,

Sorry, I had no success finding this recipe. I’ll post this on the site for reader input.


From: "Lisa" 
Subject: 7-31-15 Edition Pear Sauce
Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015 9:35 AM

Good Morning,

I don't know if this came from Good Housekeeping or not, but it sounds like
what she was looking for.


Pear Grilling Sauce
1 can (16 ounce size) pear halves, drained
3 tablespoons pear syrup
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon horseradish
salt, to taste
black pepper, to taste

In blender container, puree all ingredients.

Brush onto meat on grill during last 5 minutes of cooking time.

Use as a last-minute glaze for pork chops.

ZCMI Red Hot Dog Relish

From: Cathy
Sent: Monday, June 29, 2015 11:35 AM
Subject: ZCMI hot dog relish

Hello Phaedrus,

Way back in the 70's and 80's, the old ZCMI department store in Salt Lake City Utah had a little lunch counter 
down in the basement which served hot dogs with a wonderful red relish on them.  I would just love to find a 
recipe for that relish - any ideas?


Hungry in Texas,

Hi Cathy,

I had no success with a ZCMI recipe. The only mention of it that I could find was that it was a tomato relish.

There’s a non-ZCMI ripe tomato hot dog relish recipe below.


Ripe  Tomato  Relish  (Hot  Dog)

4 qts. ripe tomatoes, chopped coarsely
3 onions, chopped fine
1 c. celery, cut up
2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. salt
1 3/4 tsp. cinnamon
2 green peppers, chopped fine
1 pt. vinegar
1/2 c. white sugar
2 tbsp. mustard seed

Mix all together.  Put in pan and cook on low heat until thick.  Then put in pint jars and seal.  Makes about 7 pints.

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