War Cake ...a.k.a. Poor Man's Cake

Friday, December 7, 20125comments

War Cake ...a.k.a. Poor Man's Cake
War Cake ...a.k.a. Poor Man's Cake

I had been getting requests for War Cake on our Facebook Page for the last couple of weeks and although at first I replied that I had never heard of it, in fact, our family has been making it for decades. Said to be a recipe adapted to the limited available ingredients such as eggs and dairy products due to rationing during World War II, we know this cake in our family as Poor Man's Cake and my Mom's recipe for it is absolutely delicious. By either name this is one delicious, moist raisin spice cake and although it is made without eggs or milk, you would never know it. It stays moist for days in a covered container but you may want to try it warm out of the oven with some rum sauce for a terrific dessert especially now as the Holiday season approaches.

War Cake ...a.k.a. Poor Man's Cake
War Cake ...a.k.a. Poor Man's Cake
In a small saucepan combine

2 cups raisins
3 cups water

Bring to a rolling boil and continue to boil for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in:

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter

Stir until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. This step can be done a day in advance if you prefer. Let this mixture cool for at least a couple of hours until it reaches room temperature.

Sift together:

3 cups flour
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

Pour the raisin mixture onto the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon until well blended but do not over mix the batter. Pour the batter into a well greased and floured bundt pan or tube pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes before turning the cake out onto a wire rack to cool completely. store in an airtight container or cake tin.

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December 8, 2012 at 11:31 AM

Oh, my! This must be my grandma's
"spice cake" they'd make and put in cold storage. By the time the recipe had trickled down to our generation, we called it a doorstop as somehow the leavening must have been left out. Fond memories of it (when moist) with a vanilla buttercream which did, indeed, last for several days covered at room temp. Ty

December 9, 2012 at 11:59 AM

I have this baking even as I type. Smells so good, sweet and spicy. I made it vegan by using oil in place of butter. And, I used apple cider instead of water, to add another layer of flavor and use up some cider I had in the fridge. I did reduce the sugar to 1 cup because of the sugar in the cider. Can't wait for it to be done!

December 9, 2012 at 1:31 PM

Does it freeze well?

December 9, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Absolutely Brett!

November 22, 2013 at 4:58 PM

My mom made this for years, and now I do. It is wonderful, and over the years, I have added mixed fruits and even nuts as well as raisins. It makes a wonderful dark fruit cake.

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