Food for Thought: Fathers Day Special

Food for Thought

By Jean Hecker

A Columnist for the Newspaper

A dessert you may pair with ice cream, store-bought or homemade.
Last month when I was on vacation, I started to clean out my hall closet, which was just chock-full of all kinds of stuff. There were old bottles of perfume, shampoo, empty cans of hairspray, old medicine bottles, and way at the bottom was a box of my dad’s mementos. I found an old letter of recommendation from his boss at the Leggett’s Canning Company, once the mainstay of the Landisville area, praising him for a job well-done. Also at the bottom was an old, yellowed newspaper clipping  from the Vineland Times Journal dated 1944 and it was a column written by Del Brandt about my dad, speaking of him as an up-and-coming leader in his field. It mentioned that he was a graduate of the New York Electrical School and that he started at the Leggett Canning Company when he was 14, working with his dad Frank who was brought in from Hoboken NJ to manage the plant. There was dad, a young man in an informal shot working at his bench, and it was great to see his smile again!
My dad just loved summer and loved to cook. His specialties were stuffed peppers, stuffed cabbage, hamburgers, and especially ice cream.. We had an old fashioned hand-crank ice cream maker and his favorite ice cream was peach. Linda and I took turns with the crank, but it was Dad who was strong enough to finish the batch.
Here is a little recipe of a peach cake that is easy to put together and even easier to eat with a big scoop of homemade ice cream! I know that my dad would have just loved this desert on a hot summer night.
If you are ambitious, take a look at Amazon online and check out the ice-cream makers. There is one for every budget and there’s nothing like homemade. But, if you want the quick fix, make sure you head on over to Verona Custard stand on Delsea Drive in Vineland. They make homemade ice cream and it is just luscious!
Buttermilk Peach Pudding Cake
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
3 1/2 peaches, peeled and coarsely chopped (about 1 1/2 lb.)
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
2 ripe peaches, peeled and sliced (about 1 lb.)
Ice cream

  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Sift together first seven ingredients; sift again.

  2. Process chopped peaches in a food processor or blender until smooth. (Yield should be 2 cups puree.) Stir in buttermilk.

  3. Beat butter and sugar at high speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Add peach mixture, and beat until well blended.

  4. Layer sliced peaches in a greased 13x9-inch pan.

  5. Fold flour mixture into butter mixture. Pour batter over sliced peaches in pan. Place pan in a large roasting pan, and add boiling water to roasting pan to a depth of one inch.

  6. Bake at 350º for 50 minutes or until set. (Pudding will still be moist.) Serve warm with ice cream.

Jean Hecker is a full-time travel agent at Magic Carpet Travels and a part-time foodie. She has a BA in Home Economics Education from Rowan University and enjoys exploring all facets of the food and restaurant industry.