This snack cake is easy to make, and if you have the time, it would be wonderful to use homemade applesauce. If not, no worries: A good quality store-bought sauce will work just fine. Like most cakes of this type, it tastes even better when allowed to sit a day or two, and it will keep well and stay moist for up to a week when wrapped properly. Bake up this goody one fall afternoon and enjoy as your house fills with the heavenly autumn scent of this simple yet classic spice cake.
This recipe is by Carol Hannan of Kingsville, Maryland, and was originally published in The Baltimore Sun.
- 2 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 1/4 Teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 Teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 Teaspoon cloves
- 1/2 Teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 Teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 Cup shortening
- 1 (15-ounce) can unsweetened applesauce
- 3 eggs
- 1 Cup seedless raisins, chopped
- 1 Cup walnuts, finely chopped (optional)
Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease well and flour a 13-by-9-inch baking pan.
Step 2: Into the large mixing bowl of an electric mixer, sift together 2 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour, 1 3/4 cups sugar, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon cloves, 1/2 teaspoon allspice and 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg.
Step 3: Add 1/2 cup shortening and 1 (15-ounce) can unsweetened applesauce; beat 1 minute at low speed, just to combine.
Step 4: At medium speed, beat 2 minutes, constantly cleaning side of bowl with rubber scraper and guiding batter into beaters. Add 3 eggs and beat 2 minutes more.
Step 5: Combine 1 cup chopped seedless raisins and 1 cup finely chopped walnuts (if using) and gently fold into the batter.
Step 6: Turn batter into prepared pan. Bake for 45 minutes, or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean.
Step 7: Let cake cool completely in pan on wire rack. Frost as desired.