Growing up in my house, we had a Christmas cake every year. They were actually fruitcakes, and my mother was fond of two cakes she ordered through the mail: Collin Street Bakery Regular Deluxe® Fruitcake (made in Corsicana, Texas, since 1896) and Claxton Fruitcake (made in Claxton, Georgia, since 1910). She adored the dense fruity cakes; I liked them, too. My sisters were divided on the issue.
When I was a teenager, we started making our own holiday cakes, a Friendship Cake made with a starter and a large amount of fruit. We baked dozens of Friendship Cake loaves for friends and relatives at Christmas. The starter is long gone, thank goodness, and I don’t remember the last time I baked a cake – fruit or any type.
That could change this Christmas! Harkening back to holiday traditions formed in families for years and drawing inspiration from Southern Living magazine, we are pleased to showcase for Evansville Living readers the beautiful Christmas cake on the cover by Lexi Bailey, of Lexi Bailey Baking in Newburgh, Indiana. Lexi created this stunning and delicious Christmas spice cake adorned in elegant and tasty white icing.
We drew our inspiration from 25 years of Southern Living’s white Christmas cake covers, featured in the December 2020 issue. I was thinking about how Evansville Living might create our own white Christmas cake as soon as I pulled the beautiful issue from the mailbox.
I reached out to Southern Living Senior Food Editor Lisa Cericola to share our plans for our interpretation of the white Christmas cake and to ask about the enduring popularity of their annual white cake cover.
“Year after year, we are amazed by how many readers look forward to and make our annual white cake,” she says. “For so many people in and out of the South, it is a tradition that’s as essential as trimming the Christmas tree.”
As a city magazine, we can’t feature a white Christmas cake on the cover of the November/December issue for 25 years, but we thought it was the perfect cover photography (by Zach Straw) and story for this year – sweet, simple, sophisticated, and sincere – and not a fruitcake. Please enjoy meeting Lexi Bailey, the entrepreneur baker who accepted our request to bake a white Christmas cake especially for Evansville Living (page 15). On page 52, Lexi shares her recipe and cake baking tips.
I am going to break my no-cake-baking streak and try my hand at Lexi’s spice cake this holiday season.
If you are inspired to get out the cake pans, we would like to hear from you. Share your white Christmas cake photos on social media and tag us: #EvansvilleLivingWhiteCake
May your holidays be bright! Please be happy and well. As always, I look forward to hearing from you.
Kristen K. Tucker
Publisher & Editor