Blending the Old with Something New

Cover photo of 'Our State' featuring the Maple Syrup and Country Ham Cake

Since the grand opening of my new business, The Cookery, Iʼve had my eye on interesting food ideas, foodie events, and culinary magazines pretty much all of the time. I canʼt help it — my husband and I own a culinary incubator, which is not only a commercial kitchen for rent by the hour, but a member-based organization that helps food entrepreneurs get their businesses running and growing. Working in a kitchen with a crazy mix of bakers, caterers, food trucks and specialty food makers is bound to bring culinary inspiration (or the urge to learn more) into anyoneʼs brain.

By That You Mean may have itʼs roots in NYC, but I thought Iʼd bring my North Carolinian roots into this post — and I might as well, since I think it is the best of these here 50 states we have. While youʼre probably assuming that I will soon be referring to fluffy biscuits and gravy, slow-cooked collards or fried chicken, youʼre wrong — it’s cake Iʼm after.

“Carolina Cakes,” an article in the latest Our State magazine, melded Cackalackyʼs culinary traditions with baking wizardry. Our State asked Wendy Perry, recipe engineer and food stylist, “What are five NC food traditions that you can whip up into a cake?”

Hereʼs the list:

  • The Krispy Kreme Cake
  • The Maple Syrup & Country Ham Cake
  • The Pimento Cheese Cake
  • The Nabs Cake
  • The Pespi ‘N’ Peanuts Cake

CLICK HERE to check out a video of the photo shoot prep for these frosted towers and baby rounds with gooey centers. While some of these combinations seem a little on the far side, isnʼt this a prime example of what most “new” recipes currently represent? Weʼre searching for fresh ideas and innovative design, but instinctively want the traditional and nostalgia.

Restaurants are popping up everywhere featuring classic ideas with a modern twist, allowing us to be comforted by the familiar, yet be impressed and inspired.

So I gave you NCʼs “traditional” cake list, so whatʼs NYCʼs? Iʼm thinking there has to be a bagel and cream cheese cake in there somewhere. And would a cheesecake cake be too obvious? Or what about a Coney Island corn dog cake? Send us your comments, or throw out a recipe. Maybe this is a challenge perfect for Eats Meats West to tackle in its kitchen.

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