Summer Classics
Hot-Weather Hits

By Dianne Herring • Photography by Brian W. McDonald

It’s summer in the South, and that means one thing when it comes to food—good, classic cooking served in a casual atmosphere. Here, we offer recipes perfect for picnics by the water and down-home family get-togethers. Wherever this season takes you, take one of these dishes and you are sure to make a splash....  [subscribe to read full article and see more photos]


Exclusive Web Recipe

'Bama Sheet Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
3 tablespoons cocoa, Hershey’s recommended
1 cup water
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
Shaved white chocolate, to garnish
Dollop of whipped topping, to garnish
Fresh mint, to garnish

Combine flour and sugar; set aside. Combine butter, cocoa and water in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil.  Add chocolate mixture to the flour mixture, stirring well. Combine buttermilk, baking soda, eggs and vanilla; add to flour mixture, stirring well. Spoon batter into a greased and floured 13x18 jellyroll pan. Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes. Let cool. Ice with frosting. Garnish with shaved white chocolate, whipped topping and mint leaves.

For frosting:

1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup cocoa, Hershey’s recommended
1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons milk
1 (1-pound) box powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans

Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add cocoa and milk. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Add powdered sugar, vanilla and pecans, stirring until thoroughly combined.