There is no rule out there that says every fall recipe MUST be pumpkin. Or even apple. And this delicious spice cake will prove it.
This particular recipe is one that's been passed down through several generations on my mother's side, and today, I'm bringing it to the internet! Not only is it something of a family heirloom, but it has a bit of history behind it as well.
According to my grandmother, this cake used to be called "Preacher Cake." Members of the community would take turns feeding the preacher, and preachers ate a lot. This was an economical dessert to make because it had no eggs, and "back then," eggs were very expensive.
Of course, a quick Google search of "Preacher Cake" will return all kinds of recipes, many of which call for eggs. So, who is to say what the real story behind it is? I'm not going to argue with Grandma though. That just seems like a bad idea.
As my nuclear family is not at all religious, we called it spice cake, and it was considered a special treat.
For this post, I made the recipe exactly as is, as it was passed down to me from my mother. It's quite unlike me to not make any alterations at all, but I felt it was best to make it at least once without any changes.
Of course, now that I have, I foresee many variations of this cake in the future!
Yield: 1 9x9 inch cake or 15 cupcakes
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp ground gloves
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp ginger
- 1 cup sour milk**
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 cup flour
- ½ cup raisins
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
**to make sour milk, add 1 tablespoon of vinegar in a 1 cup measure, and fill to top with milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Grease and flour 9x9 inch pan OR line muffin pan with baking cups. (I got 15 cupcakes from this recipe)
- In a small bowl, mix baking soda with sour milk mixture.
- In a medium bowl or mixer, cream together butter, sugar, and spices.
- To the butter mixture, slowly add the milk mixture and flour, alternating between each, until the batter is smooth and creamy.
- Stir in raisins and walnuts.
- Bake for about 1 hour (20-30 minutes for cupcakes) or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
This cake was surprisingly quick to throw together, and delicious when served with fresh whipped cream. Now that I've mastered the original, I think the next time I make this, I'll up the ground ginger a bit, and instead of raisins, add chopped candied ginger, with maybe some pecans instead of the walnuts.