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The Valerie Dessert Project Returns To Resurrect A Dessert From Years Past. And The Winner Is…

A Strawberry Layer Cake
A Strawberry Layer Cake

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Earlier this year, AirTalk interviewed local confectionary legend Valerie Gordon of Valerie Confections in Silver Lake about her latest endeavor: The Valerie Dessert Project.

A collaboration between Gordon and LAist, the goal was to identify and recreate a renowned dessert from years past that was no longer made by the folks who did it first. After months of collecting and considering submissions and scouring the confectionary history of Southern California for the best and most beloved desserts ever created in the Southland, Gordon and LAist food editor settled on one: Clifton’s strawberry layer cake!

Though Clifton’s Cafeteria (now known as Clifton’s Republic) is still open at its location on Broadway in Downtown L.A., the famous strawberry layer cake is no longer made at the restaurant. And while a quick search of the web will turn up any number of recipes claiming to produce Clifton’s famous cake, it will no doubt require deft confectionary hands like those of Valerie Gordon to most accurately recreate the beloved dessert. Today on AirTalk, Valerie and Elina join Larry Mantle to talk about why they chose the dessert they did, what some of the other finalists were, and how Valerie plans to go about recreating the cake.


Elina Shatkin, food editor at LAist; she tweets @elinashatkin

Valerie Gordon, food historian, chocolatier and owner of Valerie Confections, an artisan confectionery in Silver Lake; she tweets @ValerieConfctns