I baked an old favorite on Saturday. My Mum always made this cake when I was a kid. We grew up on it. Come to think of it, she made all kinds of cakes – all the time. That might not sound particularly amazing until I tell you that she had six kids, including a set of twins. You should have seen her camped out at the stove, making grilled cheese sandwiches or pancakes for all of us “starving Romans” (as she called us). Each day, we used to come home from school to have our lunch, and I swear there were times when she was at the stove continuously cooking and handing out plates of food from the time we arrived until we returned to school for the afternoon session!
But, as I was saying, on Saturday I made a double batch of this recipe that was such a staple in Mum’s kitchen. Known as “Depression Cake”, it became popular during the 1930’s when eggs, butter and milk were expensive and often difficult to obtain. This cake had none of those ingredients. It’s made with raisins and spice and is not only delicious, but you’ll adore the fringe benefit of aroma-therapy while it’s cooking – the entire house will be full of wonderful fragrance!
Here’s the recipe. No frosting is needed and it’s just the thing to have with your tea or coffee!
RAISIN SPICE CAKE ( or “Depression Cake”)
Boil together for 5 minutes:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter (Lard in the old days.)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1 cup raisins
When cool, add 2 cups of flour sifted with 1 tsp. baking soda and 1/2 tsp. salt.
Mix thoroughly and spread into an 8″ round baking pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.