Jan Norris: Food and Florida

Food, Restaurants, Recipes and Pre-Disney Florida

Jan Norris: Food and Florida header image 1

Your Chance to Taste Florida — and Jan’s Special Cake

May 18th, 2009 · 3 Comments

I’m fairly well known for my baking — my former colleagues at The Post, my neighbors and assorted friends and family would likely come to my defense if there were a Baking Nuremburg.

I am never satisfied with results, however — and usually spurn compliments in exchange for real criticism. I always think I can improve on the final product.

Simply the best orange cake

One cake, however, never gets better because I never rework it – it’s perfect the way it is. It’s my fresh Florida orange cake, the one my mother made at every holiday. It’s pure, and basic: a simple soft yellow cake, just sturdy enough to hold up to the topping/glaze: sugared zest and fresh orange juice with pulp. Sounds very simple, but the process and fresh ingredients plus elbow grease results in a candy or intense marmalade flavor that never has failed to wildly stun its audience.

I bake it regularly at holidays and birthdays for a county official.  I’ve fed a group of Slow-Food enthusiasts who proclaimed it “amazing.” A well known restaurateur tried to get me to bake it for him for real money. No can do — it’s a one-of-a-kind and too labor intensive, in its own way.

Now it’s up for charity

So this cake has an impressive background. It’s the Florida orange cake I will be making for the  Palm Beach County Mental Health Association’s charity baking contest tomorrow night at Nick and Johnny’s (see below for details). 

There are 13 of us “celebrities” baking to raise money for the MHA. I’m up against FLP communicators, and bank CEO’s, politicians, restaurateurs, fashion celebs and others. Worried?

What the heck will a bank CEO know about baking?

Then there’s Leslie

lesliestreeterMy biggest rival, however, is Leslie Gray Streeter — feature writer for The Palm Beach Post — my old stomping grounds.

She’s my best crabby buddy. That is, as a “Bal’morean” from Baltimore — true crab country — a diner who knows crabs. We’re going with her to a crab-pickin’ to learn how it’s done in June — check back  here in a couple weeks for that story.

Back to Tuesday’s contest: She’s making a wimpy apple cobbler. Read her blog about it here.

Note to Leslie: I can beat that with my eyes closed. My oranges are going to so blow your apples and Crisco out of the contest. I’ve throwning down my baking mitt. Cobbler’s the best you’ve got?? Mercy! I’m already taking home the gold.

Vote early, vote often — it’s tasty!

So here’s the deal: The public gets to vote — and I aim to win by stacking the deck and getting all of you out to taste and vote — for my drop-dead delicious Florida orange cake!

 There are dozens of you out there who’ve tasted my baking – and know what you’ll be getting. For $5, you get to taste everyone’s stuff and vote. Don’t be lured by chocolate and sugary sensations with no bones or history. Fluffy icky icings have nothing on my jewel-like orange glazed cake that delivers a burst of flavor in every luscious forkful.

If you like it so well enough, you can also bid on the big uncut one — perfect for your next party, since it freezes like a dream. I’d love to see it raise $100 — it’s worth it! So rich it would feed 24 without a blink of an eye.

So, the minute you’re out of work, or off the sofa, get over to Nick and Johnny’s in Palm Beach from 4-6 p.m. Vote for my Florida orange cake and help me beat a non-Floridian.

Gators? Dolphans? Vote for me!

Everyone who has orange in their college colors, or who is from Florida (Baltimore?? Balderdash!) or who likes cake, or who eats dessert come on over! Vote for ME!

It’s all for charity: You’ll be helping the Mental Health Association that does very important work in our community.

Remember: Jan Norris — Fresh Florida Orange Cake — it’s a winner!

  • What: PBC Mental Health Association’s Celebrity Baking Contest
  • Where: Nick and Johnny’s, 207 Royal Poinciana Way (the old Chuck and Harold’s), Palm Beach
  • Time: 4-6 p.m.
  • Cost: $5 for voting sample
  • What else: Buy the whole desserts in an auction after the fact.

Tags: The Eat Beat: Restaurant News

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 That Girl bakes for charity! How chic! | pbpulse.com // May 18, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    […] Your Chance to Taste Florida — and Jan’s Special Cake | Jan Norris: Writer, Editor, Flor… says: May 18, 2009 at 11:16 am […]

  • 2 jimmyb // May 18, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    Well I’m a big fan of the orange flavor and this one has a very natural orange essence. I enjoy Gran Marnier because of the natural orange oil flavor and this is right up there with that flavor burst!

  • 3 ksteinhoff // May 18, 2009 at 7:50 pm

    What would a bank CEO know about baking?

    Trust me, a good accountant can cook the books better than any food editor.

    Don’t underestimate your competition.

Leave a Comment