JONESBORO — The secret to LaTonya Braswell’s key lime cake is hidden in the glaze.
Braswell, a Riverdale stay-at-home mother who bakes as a hobby, said she has to add a key lime glaze to the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven.
The glaze then sinks into the cake, soaking into it and becoming intermingled with the other ingredients.
“That’s the key to making it moist and giving it that zesty lime taste,” she said.
Braswell’s Key Lime Cake took first-place honors Thursday at a Family Baking Contest at the Clayton County Headquarters Library.
And it isn’t even what she considers to be her strong suit.
“It’s my husband’s favorite cake, but my specialty is a strawberry cake — or the strawberry dream cake, as my friends call it, because it’s so fluffy,” said Braswell, who posts recipes on her blog, clevadiva.blogspot.com/.
Despite her feelings about her strawberry cake, she decided she would have a better shot in the baking contest if she tried something a little more off-track.
“I thought for sure there were going to be tons of red velvet cakes and maybe strawberry cakes because that’s still kinda in season,” she said. “I said, ‘Let me try something a little different that may or may not be there.’ So, I went with key lime.”
Entries in the contest were judged on creativity, texture, taste and appearance. Braswell’s cake had an even-layered coat of white icing covered with lime slices and green icing flowers and ribbons.
Contest judges Vincent Wolfe, a children’s book author, and Ruth Drouin, a professional cake decorator, said they especially liked the design of Braswell’s cake as well as the way it tasted.
“It had good flavor and it was very moist,” said Drouin.
Wolfe added, “The appearance was aesthetically pleasing. It grabbed your attention as soon as you walked into the room and I liked that it actually had some lime slices on top.”
There was a tie between a blueberry pie made by Drouin and a key lime cake made by Irvin Gregory for second place. Felicia Jackson’s red velvet cupcakes won third place.