Caramel cake wins approval of swimmers|FOOD CHECKOUT

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 10, 2008

From The Kitchen of The Cypress House, July 26, 1978:

 It’s here. The caramel-filled chocolate cake we promised and it was truly worth waiting for.

The cake recipe comes from Dixie Butler of Columbus, Miss., whose husband, Carl, coaches the state champion Columbus Swim Team. Dixie served her famous chocolate treat when we spent the Fourth of July weekend with them for a swim meet. It’s rich, extra good and a cake young and old will enjoy. Very different from the ordinary also.

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The Butlers live in one of Columbus’ many beautiful antebellum homes. Their four-story Greek Revival House is Temple Heights, built in 1837. The home is on the Columbus Pilgrimage and just this summer has been put on the National Register of Historic Places.

Here then is Dixie’s recipe. Be careful not to overcook the cake and don’t cook your caramels—just melt them.


Caramel-in-Between Fudge Cake

1 package pudding-recipe layer cake mix


28 light caramels

1 (15-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

1 tablespoon butter or margarine


1/2 cup butter or margarine

2 squares unsweetened chocolate, melted

3 tablespoons cream or milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups sifted powder sugar


Prepare cake mix as directed on box.

Generously grease and lightly flour bottom and sides of 13 by 9-inch baking pan. (Telfon is best.)

Prepare the filling. In top of a double boiler combine caramels, condensed milk and butter. Heat over hot water, stirring constantly, until caramels are melted.

Spread one half of cake batter in prepared pan. Spread filling evenly over batter and cover with the remaining batter. Bake at 350* for about 35 to 40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.

Prepare frosting. In small mixer bowl, combine butter, chocolate, cream and vanilla. Blend well; gradually add powdered sugar; beat two to three minutes until light and fluffy.

Frost cooled cake and if desired top with one-third cup toasted sliced almonds.


P.S. The story goes that a ghost lives in the fourth-floor closet of Temple Heights. I think this cake could coax him out and down to the beamed basement kitchen.

In early December of 1977, food editor Laurin Stamm began a weekly recipe column titled “From the Kitchen of The Cypress House.” The column ran continuously through November of 2000, featuring one or two recipes each week, and totaling more than 1,150 recipes over the 23 years.

Checkout, a current weekly column that features various food stories, events and recipes, looks back at some of the most popular recipes from The Kitchen of the Cypress House, and perhaps a newly discovered one every now and then.