It’s almost time for the Blue Ribbon Country Fair at the Heritage Center in Townsend. The popular annual event will take place Sept. 27 and 28. Today, I’m encouraging you to enter the baked goods contest.

If you have your grandmother’s or your mother’s recipes, choose one to enter and to honor her. Or, use your own recipes. If you notice, most of our heirloom recipes are simple to prepare and use only basic ingredients.

Our ancestors did not have a lot of time to spend on several steps to prepare a dessert for supper and usually only a basic stocked pantry. If you’ve got flour, butter, eggs, sugar and sweet or buttermilk, you have all you need.

Entry forms, categories and contest rules are available at several locations around town including Miss Olivia’s Table. For more information, call the Heritage Center.

Pound cake was just that in the early years, a pound of each main ingredient. Today’s recipe is still simple and delicious.

Our ancestors wasted nothing, hence banana bread made from over ripe bananas. Self rising flour was developed in the mid 1800s to make hard tac better.

How many of us remember coming home from school to the smell of warm gingerbread? A splash of lemon sauce made it good enough for company dessert.

Buttermilk Pound Cake

3 cups sugar

1 cup butter, at room temperature

6 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Grease and flour a Bundt pan.

Cream butter and sugar until light.

Add eggs, one at a time. Beat until incorporated after each.

Add vanilla. Whisk together flour, soda and salt.

Add flour mixture and buttermilk, alternately, beginning and ending with flour mixture.

Transfer to the prepared pan.

Bake 45-50 minutes.

Check with a cake tester after 45 minutes.

Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool.

Banana Bread

1/2 stick butter, at room temperature

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 1/2 cups self rising flour

3 bananas, mashed

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x5x2 inch bread pan.

Cream butter and sugar until light.

Add eggs, one at a time. Beat until incorporated after each.

Add vanilla, then flour; beat until smooth.

Add bananas. Beat until well mixed.

Transfer to the prepared pan.

Bake 45-55 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack.

Gingerbread

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup boiling water

1/2 cup solid shortening

1/3 cup sugar

1 cup molasses

1 egg, slightly beaten

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour 9x5x2 inch baking pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

In a medium bowl, mix hot water and shortening until melted.

Stir in sugar and molasses.

Cool slightly. Stir in beaten egg.

Combine wet and dry mixtures, stirring only until blended.

Pour into the prepared pan.

Bake 50 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack.

Lemon Sauce

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

1 tablespoon corn starch

1 cup boiling water

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Combine sugars, cornstarch and water in a small saucepan.

Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and clear.

Stir in butter and lemon juice. Remove from heat.

Cool slightly before pouring over each serving.

Add a dollop of whipped cream if desired.

Miss Olivia Sipe is the owner of Miss Olivia’s Table in Maryville.

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