The Mailbox: Seeking a lemon cake; cooking short ribs

I was wondering if anyone had Drake’s Bakery recipe for a lemon two- or three-layer cake with a pudding-type frosting. The bakery was located on the corner of El Camino and Fulton in Sacramento. My grandmother bought this cake for me for my birthday and then my parents did. I would be so grateful to have this memory again. Thank you.

Barbara Solorzano, Claremont

How to contact the Mailbox

If you have recipes in reply to Mailbox reader requests, or questions or comments, write to: Mailbox, c/o Taste, The Sacramento Bee, P.O. Box 15779, Sacramento, CA 95852. You also can email or fax (916)  321-1109. Please include your full name, your city and phone number.

Pepper short ribs

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 3 hours, 45 minutes

Serves 4

George Halaway of Sacramento was looking for some good short rib recipes and good lamb shank recipes.

Today’s recipe comes from Loni Reynolds of Fair Oaks. She’s made this dish for many years and she and her family love it. She has even made it in a slow cooker with great results. She found the recipe in a 1973 issue of Good Housekeeping magazine.

2 tablespoons salad oil

2 large green bell peppers cut into ½-inch strips

3 pounds short ribs, bone-in

1 medium onion, sliced

1/2 cup dry sherry

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup water

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon water

In a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, cook peppers until tender-crisp, stirring constantly. Remove with slotted spoon. Refrigerate.

In remaining oil, brown short ribs. Add onion and cook until tender, stirring occasionally. Add sherry, 1/4 cup soy sauce and water. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 3 hours, or until fork-tender. Add water if necessary. Stir occasionally. Remove ribs and keep warm.

Sauce: Pour pan liquid into a 2- to 3-cup fat separator. Discard excess fat. To remaining liquid add water or broth to make 1 ½ cups. Return to Dutch oven. In a cup, blend cornstarch and sugar; add 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1 tablespoon water, blend until smooth. Gradually stir this into hot liquid and cook over medium heat until thickened. Return meat to pan, add peppers, heat through. Serve over hot rice.