Trinity bake sale to honor memory of Sharron Robinson Fuller

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By Ann Cipperly

When Trinity United Methodist Church holds its Mission Barbecue Chicken and Bake Sale Saturday, April 6, many in the church will be honoring the memory of Sharron Robinson Fuller by baking her special cakes. The event will be held from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the church fellowship hall. The “Prayers and Squares” Quilting Ministry will also host a craft fair with handmade quilts and other items.

Sharron had served as chairman of the bake sale for many years and was instrumental in its success. The much loved church member passed away last fall from a tragic car accident. Her presence will be greatly missed this year. Ladies of the church decided to honor her memory by baking her wonderful cake recipes.

“Once Sharron became chairman of the bake sale it really took off,” says Steve Bass, the Minister of Youth. “She was so loved that when she asked people to do something, they wanted to do it. The bake sale grew.

“Last year Sharron baked 32 cakes for the bake sale,” he adds. “She sent me photos throughout the week with flour all over her kitchen. The past few years, we have made about 4,000 on the bake sale for missions.

“She was well known in the community,” adds Steve. “We hope people who normally bought barbecue tickets and cakes from her will be here to honor what she loved the most, which was our youth and the Mexico mission trip.

“Sharron went every year and was a key leader. She went the past seven years. From the first time she went, she never missed another one. She loved to go to serve, and she loved serving with our youth here.”

“Sharron loved Jesus Christ deeply and displayed a true servant’s heart by her many contributions daily to her church family at Trinity,” says Melinda Jackson, the Senior Adult Minister. “Each year she worked diligently to make the barbecue event a huge success. Not only did she bake numerous cakes, Sharron also organized all the details of the bake sale.

“Sharron will be greatly missed at this year’s barbecue,” adds Melinda, “but it will be a great day to celebrate the life and legacy of our precious friend and sister in the Lord.”

The Second Avenue bridge was the first project Sharron headed when she was working for the Department of Transportation. Since she was so loved by the community, the bridge was named for her.

The “Prayers and Squares” Quilting Ministry at Trinity will be hosting a craft fair at the barbecue and bake sale event. Handmade baby quilts, lap quilts, blankets, burp cloths and pillow cases, as well as items for the kitchen, including potholders, aprons, grocery bags and bowls and vases will be for sale.

“Many of these items are great for Mother’s Day gifts,” says Anne Davis, chairman of the quilting ministry at Trinity.

A drawing will be held for a beautiful quilt. Tickets are $5 for the chance to win the quilt.

While Sharron and other ladies at Trinity generously shared recipes over the years, the chicken recipe is a tightly guarded secret. The recipe was found on the back of a portrait in an old county church in Chambers County.

Jim Jackson is the head grill cook for the chicken. Last Sunday a group of men from Trinity constructed a 50-foot cement block pit in the parking lot across from the church.

The chicken will marinate in a vinegar base sauce. On Friday afternoon, the Trinity men will fire up the grill and start cooking 2,000 chicken halves. It will take all night to cook all of the chicken. As the chicken grills, it will be brushed every ten minutes with the sauce when the racks are turned.

When the vinegar-based sauce is brushed on the chicken, it creates a great deal of smoke, which gives the chicken its flavor. Each chicken half is slowly grilled for three and a half hours. Then, the chicken is placed in coolers to steam to keep it tender and moist.

Generally 40 to 50 men assist with grilling during the night. The chicken is generally finished cooking at 6 a.m.

The specialty barbecue chicken is served with coleslaw, chips and bread for dine-in or take-out. Sweet tea will be provided to those dining in the fellowship hall. Anyone desiring dessert will have a variety of choices at the bake sale.

Take a break from the kitchen this Saturday, and bring the family for delicious barbecue chicken and homemade desserts, while helping a variety of mission programs. Take home a special cake baked using Sharron’s treasured recipe in remembrance of a very special lady.

Barbecue tickets are $10 in advance and $12 on Saturday. Tickets will be available at the church office until noon on Friday. Trinity United Methodist Church is located at 800 Second Avenue. For additional information call 334.745.2632.

Following are Sharron’s treasured dessert recipes. While Sharron enjoyed baking for the Trinity bake sale, she also loved preparing these recipes for her husband, John, and their two children, Kathryn and Houston.

Mandarin Orange and Pineapple Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1 (18.25 oz.) pkg. yellow cake mix
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1½ cups confectioners’ sugar
20 oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
Two 8 oz. cans mandarin oranges, drained
3.5 oz. pkg. instant vanilla pudding mix
8 oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed
Mix and bake cake mix following package instructions for two 8 or 9 inch round layers. Cool layers. Split each layer in half to make four layers.
In a large bowl, whip cream cheese until soft; gradually add confectioner’s sugar. Stir in pineapple with juice and drained mandarin oranges, reserving about five oranges for garnish. Mix in dry pudding mix. Fold in whipped topping.
Place one layer on serving plate cut side up; spread with frosting. Place other layer cut side down; top with frosting. Repeat until all layers are used. Spread frosting on top and sides of cake; garnish with orange wedges. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Old Fashioned Coca Cola Cake – for the Chocoholic
Sharron Robinson Fuller
Cake:
1 box Duncan Hines White Cake Mix
4 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 stick butter, melted
1 cup Coca Cola
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
Place cake mix, cocoa powder, melted butter, cola, buttermilk, eggs and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Increase speed to medium and beat 2 more minutes or until well blended. Fold in marshmallows with a spatula.
Pour into a lightly greased 9 x 13 cake pan. Bake at 350 for approximately 40 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly pressed with your finger. Remove from oven and let cake cool on wire rack in the pan for 15 minutes. Make frosting while cake is cooling.
Coca Cola Frosting
1 stick butter
4 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup Coca Cola
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in cocoa powder and cola. Let mixture come just to a boil, stirring constantly, and remove it from the heat. Stir in the confectioners’ sugar until frosting is thickened and smooth. Fold in the pecans.
Pour frosting over the cake and cool for 20 minutes before serving.
Note: This cake can be stored at room temperature for up to a week or wrap it in foil and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw cake overnight on the counter before serving.

3 Day No Peak Coconut Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
Cake:
1 Duncan Hines Butter Cake Mix
Bake according to package directions in two 9-inch cake pans. Cool on wire rack and split both layers in half.
Frosting/Filling:
16 oz. sour cream
12 oz. frozen coconut, thawed
2 cups sugar
1 small carton Cool Whip
Extra coconut to sprinkle over top
Filling: Mix together sour cream, coconut and sugar. Reserve 1 cup for frosting. Spread mixture between layers.
Frosting: Fold reserved 1 cup filling with Cool Whip. Frost top and sides. Sprinkle top of frosted cake with coconut. Place cake in a Tupperware type cake plate and refrigerate for at least 3 days keeping the lid closed – no peeking – serve and enjoy!
NOTE: Letting it stand for 3 days makes this cake super moist. You don’t really have to wait the 3 days to enjoy it.

Italian Cream Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
2 cups white sugar
5 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup flaked coconut
1 tsp. baking powder
2 cups all-purpose flour
Frosting
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 Tbsp. light cream
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup flaked coconut
Preheat oven to 350 degree. Grease three 9 inches round cake pans. In a small bowl, dissolve baking soda in buttermilk; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together 1/2 cup butter, shortening and white sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs, buttermilk mixture, 1 tsp. vanilla, 1 cup coconut, baking powder and flour. Stir until just combined. Pour batter into the prepared pans.
Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool.
To make frosting: In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, 1/2 cup butter, 1 tsp. vanilla and confectioners’ sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Mix in a small amount of cream to attain the desired consistency. Stir in chopped nuts and remaining flaked coconut. Spread between layers and on top and sides of cooled cake.

Strawberry Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
Cake:
18.25 oz. box white cake mix
3 oz. box strawberry flavored instant gelatin
10 oz. pkg. frozen strawberries in syrup, thawed
4 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup water
Preheat oven to 325. Lightly grease 9 x 13 cake pan.
In a large bowl, combine cake mix and gelatin. Add strawberries, eggs, oil and water; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer.
Pour into prepared pan, and bake for about 40 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Let cool in pan before icing. Spread Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting on top. Garnish with sliced fresh strawberries, if desired.
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup frozen strawberries, thawed (try not to get any juice)
16 oz. box confectioners’ sugar
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and strawberries at medium speed with an electric mixer. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar, beating until smooth.
Note: You can substitute fresh strawberries if you like. In the cake I substitute about 1 cup of fresh chopped strawberries and substitute 1/2 cup fresh chopped strawberries in the icing.

Mimi Robinson’s Key Lime Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1 pkg. Duncan Hines Lemon Cake Mix
1 1/3 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
3 oz. pkg. lime flavored Jell-O
3/4 cup orange juice
Combine cake mix, Jell-O, oil, eggs and orange juice in mixer.
Pour into 2 or 3 round greased cake pans and bake according to instructions on the cake mix box.
Allow to cool, then frost with Key Lime Frosting.
Note: Can make cupcakes or mini cupcakes (baked according to cake mix package) and frost using decorating bag and tip.
Key Lime Frosting
1/2 cup butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners’ sugar (1 box)
3 Tbsp. lime Juice (I use bottled like lemon juice)
3 Tbsp. lime Jell-O (about ½ of 3 oz. box)
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and cream cheese until fluffy and light. Add lime juice and sugar. Mix and smooth on cake.
Note: If frosting is too runny, add additional powdered sugar and/or refrigerate until ready to ice the cake/cupcakes.

My Favorite Coffee Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1 box butter cake mix
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup oil
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup pecans, chopped
Mix together cake mix, sugar, water, oil, eggs and sour cream until well-blended. Pour half of the batter into a greased, floured Bundt pan.
Mix together brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts. Sprinkle this mixture over the top of the batter in the pan. Add remaining batter. Bake for 45 minutes at 325 degrees.
Glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
Mix and pour over warm cake.
Great for breakfast or anytime of the day.

Ilah Dean’s Pound Cake
Sharron Robinson Fuller
2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 cup Crisco shortening
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
3 cups Swan Down cake flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/4 cups sweet milk
Cream together butter, Crisco and sugar. Add eggs one at a time. Beat well. Add baking powder and mix. Add flour slowly to mixture. Mix well; add milk and mix.
Pour into greased and floured tube pan. Bake at 300 degrees for 1 1/2 hours or inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Houston’s Favorite Peanut Butter Pie
Sharron Robinson Fuller
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla
8 oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed
9-inch prepared graham cracker crust
Beat together cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar. Mix in peanut butter and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Fold in whipped topping.
Spoon into graham cracker pie shell; cover, and refrigerate until firm.
Note:  You can use a store bought piecrust or make your own following the graham cracker crumb box recipe. I prefer the homemade crust.  Enjoy!

Banana Pudding with Chessmen Cookies
Sharron Robinson Fuller
12 oz. container frozen whipped topping thawed, or equal amount sweetened whip
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 cups milk
5 oz. box instant French vanilla pudding
6-8   bananas, sliced
2 bags Pepperidge Farm Chessmen cookies
Line bottom of a 13 x 9 x 2-inch dish with 1 bag of cookies and layer bananas on top.
In a bowl, combine milk and pudding mix and blend well using a handheld electric mixer.  Using another bowl, combine cream cheese and condensed milk together and mix until smooth. 
Fold whipped topping into cream cheese mixture.  Add cream cheese mixture to pudding mixture and stir until well blended.
Pour mixture over cookies and bananas and cover with remaining cookies.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Black and White Pan Cookies
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1 box Duncan Hines Butter Cake Mix
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
2 large eggs
2/3 cup oil
1/2 cup water
6 oz. white chocolate chips
6 oz. milk chocolate chips
3/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)
Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir with a spoon until well blended. Press mixture into a 9×13 lightly greased jelly-roll pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes (lightly browned). Take out of the oven; let cool in pan. Cut into bars and serve. Kids and adults love these, and they are so easy!

Ooey Gooey Butter Bars
Sharron Robinson Fuller
Bottom Layer:
18 1/4 oz. pkg. yellow cake mix
1 egg
8 Tbsp. butter, melted
Combine the cake mix, egg and butter; mix well with an electric mixer. Pat mixture into bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan. Prepare filling.
Filling:
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
8 Tbsp. butter, melted
16 oz. box powdered sugar
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add eggs, vanilla and butter; beat together. Next, add powdered sugar and mix well.
Spread over cake batter and bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes. Make sure not to overbake as the center should be a little gooey. Let cool and cut into bars.

Monster Cookies (Gluten Free)
Sharron Robinson Fuller
1/4 cup raisins, optional
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup multi-colored chocolate candies
1 stick butter, softened
12 oz. jar creamy peanut butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp. baking soda
4 1/2 cups quick-cooking oatmeal (not instant)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats.
In a very large mixing bowl, combine eggs and sugars. Mix well. Add salt, vanilla, peanut butter and butter. Mix well. Stir in chocolate candies, chocolate chips, raisins, if using, baking soda and oatmeal.
Drop by tablespoons 2 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 8-10 minutes. Do not over bake. Let stand for about 3 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool. When cool, store in large resealable plastic bags.

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