Sweet summer recipes


Below are a handful of sweet summer recipes shared with The Tribune by home cooks across Cullman County. To submit a recipe, email maggie@cullmantribune.com.

Fresh Apple Cake (from Dodge City Town Clerk Vicki Ogletree)


  • 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pan and wire rack
  • 4 1/2 cups sifted cake flour, plus more for pan
  • 2 tbsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 medium tart apples, peeled and shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raisons
  • 4 large eggs


  1. Mix together dry ingredients.
  2. Add eggs, milk and butter.
  3. Mix well.
  4. Fold in apples, raisins and walnuts.
  5. Bake in 3 8-inch pans in a 350-degree oven for 30-35 minutes.
  6. When cool, dust with powdered sugar.


Memaw’s Fig Preserves – Where Italy meets Alabama (from Friends of the Public Libraries of Cullman County Secretary Renée Welsh)

From Welsh: My husband’s roots are in northern Italy. He loved his Nonni and became her sous chef learning the recipes that filled the hearts, souls and stomachs of his family. When he is in our kitchen preparing some Trentino delicacy he will remind those ogling his creation, “Cooking isn’t a set of steps. You don’t measure; it’s intuition.” Don’t ask, “How much lemon juice do I add?” His response will always be, “As much as you need (and rolling his eyes and whispering under his breath in Italian, Encore poco gufo,” which translates to, “How many times do I have to tell you, my little owl.”

Prep Time: 20-30 minutes

Cook Time: 90-120 minutes

Servings: 10 jars


  • 1 gallon figs
  • Sugar (equal amounts of sugar/figs)
  • Water (enough to cover the figs in the pot)
  • Lemon slices (enough to have one slice per jar


  1. Try to select figs of equal ripeness – wash them prior to preparing.
  2. Cut stems a wee bit around – do not expose the inside of the figs.
  3. Place sugar and lemon slices over figs. Cover. Put aside until morning. 
  4. Add water, covering the figs.
  5. Cook slowly, boiling gently; bubbles will indicate a good syrup. If water boils off, you can add just a bit to cover. Cook time ~ 2 hours.
  6. Taste test – yum!
  7. Place rings/lids on jars – don’t seal. Place jars in hot water bath and cook until sealed.


Blueberry Muffins (with an incredible crunchy topping) (from Cullman County Public Library System Director Sharon Townson)

Servings: 12 muffins

Muffin Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen

Crumble topping Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Line muffin tin with liners.
  3. Muffins:  Mix flour and sugar. Combine vegetable oil, egg and milk. Mix with flour mixture. Gently fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups right to the top and sprinkle with crumble topping mixture.
  4. Crumble topping: Mix together sugar, flour, butter, nutmeg and cinnamon. Mix with fork and sprinkle over muffins. 
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until done.


Grilled Peaches with Honey and Yogurt (from North Alabama Agriplex Director Rachel Dawsey)

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes


  • 1/4 cup fat free vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/8 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 large ripe peaches (cut in half with pit removed)
  • 2 tbsp. honey (from Dawsey: I prefer local and raw)


  1. Combine yogurt and cinnamon.
  2. Grill the peaches, covered on low or indirect heat until soft, about 2-4 minutes on each side.
  3. Drizzle with honey and serve each with 1 tbsp. of yogurt.



Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake (from Debbie Bearden)


  • 10 tbsp. butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg, plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 2/3 cup self-rising flour
  • 1 cup chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a small round pizza pan.
  3. Cream butter, brown sugar and white sugar.
  4. Blend in egg and egg yolk.
  5. Add self-rising flour and mix until combined.
  6. Use a wooden spoon to mix in all but 2 tbsp. chocolate chips.
  7. Spread cookie dough into pan, spreading evenly.
  8. Press remaining chocolate chips into top.
  9. Bake 15-20 minutes until top is golden brown.
  10. Frost or pipe frosting along edges if desired!


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