We are in the home stretch of Derby season — and if you’re like me, that means one thing: it’s time to finalize your Derby Party menus!
Growing up in Southern Kentucky, one part of the menu was always a highlight: dessert. Several of the ones on my table growing up on the farm were recipes from my Mama (my great-grandmother), her family, and my grandparents. To continue to pay homage to the Commonwealth and to my Kentucky heritage — which is why I do what I do — I wanted to make a recipe incorporating Ale-8-One, a favorite of mine.
The Ale-8-One soft drink has been bottled since 1926 and is the only soft drink invented in Kentucky still in existence; that, to me, is something to celebrate.
In examining the flavor profile, ginger is the note that is the most prominent. Thus, I decided to infuse it into a delicious lemon cake with buttercream icing. Ginger and lemon are a natural pairing; that said, the addition of the Ale-8-One greatly increased the moistness and texture of the cake.
I don’t think I’ll be making my lemon cake without it anymore!
From my kitchen to your’s, enjoy this recipe, y’all — it is, quite literally, a slice of Kentucky. In my book, that means that it is a slice of heaven. Cheers to Ale-8-One, cheers to dessert, and cheers to Derby season! It’s a beautiful time to be a Kentuckian.
Lemon Ale-8-One Kentucky Derby Cake
2 c. all-purpose flour
1.5 c. sugar
1/2 bottle Ale-8-One (6 oz.)
1 c. fresh lemon juice
3/4 c. sour cream
2/3 c. vegetable oil
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 c. butter
7 c. powdered sugar
1 c. shortening
3 tsp. lemon zest
3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 1/4 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 package of blueberries
1 package of raspberries
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Combine dry ingredients together in a bowl.
- In the same bowl, add lemon juice, eggs, and oil.
- Add Ale-8-One and vanilla extract, mix until well-combined.
- Add sour cream until incorporated.
- Separate batter into two cake pans.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes; check cake with a toothpick until done. When done, the toothpick will come out clean.
- Allow cake to fully cool before icing.
- Beat butter and shortening together until smooth.
- Add 4 c. of the powdered sugar (in batches).
- Combine lemon juice, vanilla, and the lemon zest until well-mixed.
- Add the remaining 3 c. of powder sugar (in batches).
- After fully cooled, take one of the cakes and lay it flat on a cake stand.
- Put desired amount of icing on top of the cake.
- Layer the second cake on top of the icing, adding more icing to the top of the second layer.
- I prefer to leave the sides without any icing; that said, you can cover the cake in icing, if wanted.
- Spread raspberries and blueberries on top of the cake; cut and enjoy!
I promise y’all — this will be the hit of your Derby Party! When your guests ask you about it, you’ll be able to say – with pride – that it is using Ale-8-One, a Kentucky legacy.
I always pick up my Ale-8-One at Kroger; be sure to look out for the limited-edition Derby packaging!
As always: Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!
Y’all come back now, ya hear?
FTC: This is a commissioned post; however, as always, all opinions are my own.