Mary Ann's Blog

Mom’s Heavenly Whiskey Cake

Three days before Christmas was my mother’s starting point for making whiskey cake, a signature item on the holiday table. It was no small feat to make one if you tried to do it all at once but making it in stages was very doable.  There was so much going on with this cake from making the basic sponge cake, to slicing it and spritzing the slices with whiskey, to making the cream filling and finally whipping up clouds of fluffy meringue to envelop the whole cake and pop it under the broiler just before serving!

Why did she need three days? One to make the cake, one to make the filling and chill it and one to assemble it. Not a bad plan.

When it emerged from the oven with its clouds of meringue now a golden brown color, applause went out with great whistling and kudos to the chef.

It was cut into squares and the first forkful told you that you may well be in heaven for it was light and full of ethereal flavors that just seemed to marry well and lift you off your feet.

This was a big cake, formed on a baking sheet and the perfect size to serve a crowd.  You could easily manage two pieces; it was that light.  

Whiskey cake will always be part of my holiday traditions, if for nothing else to cherish those memories of Christmas past. Get the recipe here.


  1. Carolyn's avatar


    Mary Ann I've been watching you for years, probably from beginning. First with mom, then with my husband. We make a whiskey cake too! Another recipe my great grandmother brought from Italy! Everyone loves it! Ours is not as elaborate as yours, but delicious also! Looking forward to new season, and have several of your cookbooks. The stories you include in the books, and on your show, bring back such wonderful memories from my childhood, and for my mother. Thank you!

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