When I was growing up, my mother had a well-used recipe box. Do you remember those? The little boxes overflowing with hand-written recipes on index cards and pages torn from magazines folded into quarters. The best of those were the family recipes that were handed down from my Grandma Grace and great-aunts: family cookie recipes, fluffy biscuits, and pecan sticky buns. Then there was one of my favorites discovered in my early 20s — the magic recipe for a buttermilk cake that belonged to my mother’s great-aunt Patience, affectionately known as “Auntie Pitts.”
I remember making it the first time without very high expectations, because who knew how it would turn out? Well, it was wonderful — an ultimate single-layer yellow cake with all the right moisture and subtle tanginess that you get from buttermilk.