Southern Living Takes It to the Tailgate

A few weeks ago when Husband and I visited Middleton Place, we also had the opportunity to attend The Southern Living Taste of Charleston event to top off our weekend. Southern Living was nice enough to invite us, and when I saw that they were doing a special demonstration for the new Official SEC Tailgating Cookbook, I knew we had to attend.

Football is like a religion of sorts here in the South and, regardless of my personal interest in the sport, tailgating is an art form that most Southern Belles need to learn early. From decking out your tailgating space to preparing food that will still look tasty 3 hours after you arrive is really something. Luckily, this book is full of really great recipes… as if we ever expect anything less from Southern Living, right? A few that we got to try at the event: Buttermilk Chess Tarts, Deviled Eggs (a particular hit with Husband), and these amazing little Mini Bourbon-and-Cola Bundt Cakes…

The unexpected treat of the day? Meeting Southern Living Test Kitchen director Rebecca Gordon, an Alabama girl who was cute as a peach! In fact, she even has a tailgating blog, Tidefan Fare, where she shares stories, recipes, as well as a few Q&As with SEC heroes. (For Tennessee fans like us, here are a couple Tennessee parents you may be interested in: this Q&A with Barbara Dooley or this one with Archie Manning.)

I couldn’t post about the book without giving you a little sample of the goodness, so I asked if I could share a recipe. This one was an obvious choice; what belle doesn’t need a little more bourbon in her dessert library? Enjoy!

Mini Bourbon-and-Cola Bundt Cakes

Makes 3 dozen


  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cola soft drink
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Bourbon-and-Cola Glaze (Recipe below…)
– – – – – – – – –
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar; beat until blended. Add eggs and vanilla; beat at low speed until blended.
  2. 2. Stir together cola, buttermilk, and bourbon in a small bowl. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients in another bowl. Add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with cola mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition, stopping to scrape bowl as needed. Pour batter into 3 lightly greased 12-cup Bundt brownie pans, filling each three-fourths full.
  3. 3. Bake at 350° for 12 to 15 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks, and cool 30 minutes. Drizzle warm Bourbon-and-Cola Glaze over cakes.
  4. Go Big: Batter can be poured into 1 greased and floured 15-cup Bundt pan. Bake at 350° for 45 to 50 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

Bourbon-and-Cola Glaze

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 tablespoons cola soft drink
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 2 cups plus 2 Tbsp. powdered sugar
– – – – – – – – –
Cook first 3 ingredients in a 2- qt. saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until butter melts. Remove from heat; stir in bourbon. Beat in powdered sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
© Southern Living 2012 The Official SEC Tailgating Cookbook

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