spice cake with brown sugar frosting

20122 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup butter, soft
1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups buttermilk

Sift flour, baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg together. Cream butter; add sugars, eggs, and vanilla. Beat at high speed for 5 min, or until light and fluffy. Scrape bowl often. Add sifted dry ingredients, alternating with buttermilk, mixing at lowest speed just until smooth.

Pour batter into two greased and floured 8" round layer cake pans. . Bake at 350F 30 minutes, or until a wooden pick or cake tester inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on rack for 5 min. Remove from pans and cool on racks.

brown sugar frosting

2 egg whites
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/3 cup cold water
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients in top of double boiler. Beat 1 minute at high speed of electric mixer. Place over rapidly boiling water and cook, beating constantly, 7 minutes or until peaks form. Remove from heat and continue beating until spreading consistency is reached. Frost tops and sides of cooled spice cake.

I made this for Mark's 2012 birthday, the one with the 55 blazing tea lights.

good neighbour cake

1 c oatmeal
2 c brown sugar
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 c boiling water
2 eggs
1 c AP flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 c raisins or dates
1/2 c chopped walnuts

Mix together the oatmeal, sugar, oil and water. Let stand 20 min. Lightly beat the eggs and mix into the oatmeal mixture after it cools.

Mix dry ingredients together, then add to the oatmeal mixture. Finally, add raisins or dates and the nuts. Pour into a well greased angel food pan (or a 9x12" pan or 2 loaf pans) and bake at 350 for 45 minutes (try 40 minutes for the other pans).

This is one of my mother's latter day recipes, not one from my childhood. I disappointed her in so many ways, one of which was my staunch dislike of dates. Fingernails, I called them. When she was a young struggling runaway in Calgary, she subsisted on coffeeshop matrimonial cake and felt a lifelong gratitude toward Nature's candy..

wacky chocolate cake

1 1/2 c bleached all-purpose flour
1/4 c unsweetened, nonalkalized cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 c granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp white or cider vinegar
6 tbsp vegetable oil
1 c water

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375F. Lightly grease an 8-inch square pan.

Sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt, then add the sugar. In a measuring cup, measure out oil, then add the vinegar and vanilla; stir to combine. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, pour in oil mixture, then the 1 c water. Stir together with a fork until the flour is incorporated. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the top is springy and a tester inserted in the center comes out dry. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack, then cut and serve it from the pan.


poppy seed bundt cake

2 2/3 c sifted AP flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 c unsalted butter
5 eggs, separated
1 c buttermilk
1/3 c poppy seeds
1 tbsp grated lemon rind
1 3/4 c sugar

Grease and flour a 12-cup 10" Bundt pan.

Sift together flour, baking powder, soda and salt. Beat together butter and 1 1/2 c of the sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolks one at a time. Add sifted ingredients alternately with buttermilk, starting and ending with dries and beating well after each addition. Beat until smooth. Beat in poppy seeds and lemon rind. Set aside.

Beat whites until foamy, then gradually beat in remaining 1/4 c sugar until meringue form soft peaks. Fold into batter until no white remains. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 325F for 55 min or until top springs back when touched lightly with a fingertip. Let stand 5 min, then loosen cake around tube and sides with thin spatula. Invert onto wire rack. Cool completely. Just before serving, dust with XXX sugar if desired.

lemon poppy seed cake (Empress Hotel)

1 1/4 c AP flour  300 mL
1/4 c poppy seeds  50 mL
4 tsp finely grated lemon zest  20 mL
1 tsp baking powder  5 mL
1/4 tsp salt  1 mL
3 eggs
1/4 c lemon juice  50 mL
2 tbsp sour cream  25 mL
1/2 c unsalted butter, soft  125 mL
3/4 c granulated sugar  175 mL
1/4 c XXX sugar  50 mL

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, poppy seeds, zest, baking powder and salt until well combined. Set aside.

In a small bowl, stir together lemon juice and sour cream. Set aside.

In a large bowl, using electric mixer, cream butter, granulated and XXX sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 min. With mixer running, add eggs once at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition.

Add flour mixture and lemon mixture alternately to egg mixture in 2 additions each, mixing batter until smooth.

Scrape into greased 9" (1.5 L) round cake pan and bake at 350F for 30-35 min or until tester comes out clean and cake is golden.

Let cool in pan, then sprinkle with additional icing sugar to serve.

This is an excellent little cake to take somewhere - it looks very nice decorated with sliced kiwi fruit. The recipe is originally from the Empress Hotel.

apple custard torte

1 3/4 c sifted AP flour
1 1/2 c sugar
1 c butter, melted and slightly cooled
2 tsp baking powder
4 eggs, lightly beaten
3 medium tart apples, pared, cored and sliced 3/4" thick (about 1 lb)
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Grease 9" springform pan.

Beat flour, 1 c of the sugar, 1/2 c of the butter, baking powder and 2 of the eggs in a medium bowl to make a smooth dough. Refrigerate until chilled. 

Press over bottom and up sides of the pan, 2" high. Stand apple slices in the surface of the dough, rounded sides up. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Place pan on baking sheet.

Bake at 350F for 50 min or until dough is lightly golden. Leave oven on. Stir together 2 eggs, 1/2 c sugar and 1/2 c melted butter. Carefully pour over the torte. Do not allow egg mixture to run over sides of dough. Bake for an additional 20 min or until custard sets. Cool on rack. Remove rim. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes 8 servings at 505 calories per serving.

This is a simple, rich dessert that looks very attractive.


1 c butter
Granulated sugar
1 egg, beaten
6 almonds, ground
1 3/4 c sifted AP flour
1/2 tsp salt
4-5 apples
3/4 c water
Whipped cream

Cream butter and 1/3 c sugar well. Add the egg and almond. Sift in the flour and salt, then mix smoothly. Spread 2/3's of the dough in a deep 9" springform pan and bake at 400F for 20 min. Let cool in pan.

Pare, core and slice apples in small sections. Boil 1/2 c sugar and the water together until syrup spins a thread from the edge of a spoon. Place a few apple sections at a time in the syrup and cook until soft, but not broken. Let apples cool. Let syrup cook a little longer to thicken it. 

Arrange apples in neat rows on the torte and pour syrup over them. Force the remaining dough through a pastry tube, decorating the top with a border and criss-crossing strips over the apples. Return torte to the oven and bake until the garnishing dough is done and beginning to turn golden brown. 

Remove outer rim and let the torte chill on the base of the pan. Serve with whipped cream. 6-8 servings.

newfoundland gingerbread

1/4 c butter or margarine
1/4 c shortening
1/2 c sugar
1 egg
1 c molasses
2 1/2 c AP flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1 /2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 c hot milk

Cream butter, shortening and sugar. Beat in egg until fluffy; add molasses. Sift together flour, soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt. Stir dry ingredients into creamed mixture until well mixed. Stir hot milk in gently. Pour into greased 9x9" pan. Bake at 325F for 35 min or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Serve with whipped cream.

rich gingerbread

1/2 c unsalted butter (no substitute)
1/2 c sugar
1 beaten egg
2 1/2 c AP flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1 /2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp grated orange rind
1/2 c molasses
1/2 c honey
1 c hot water

Melt butter and allow to cool. Beat sugar and egg until frothy. Beat in butter. Sift together the flour, soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Add orange rind. Combine molasses, honey and hot water together and add alternately with dry ingredients to butter mixture. Pour batter into greased 9x9" pan. Bake at 350F for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into centre comes out clean.

I combined this recipe with the Newfoundland gingerbread by using unsalted butter, orange rind, milk and, I think, the honey with molasses. It was very good, so I'm going to rewrite it below and make it forever for Mark's birthday! Clearly an hour of cooking is wrong.

mark's birthday ginger cake

1/2 c unsalted butter
1/2 c sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 1/2 c AP flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger (or 1 tsp ground and 1 tbsp freshly grated)
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp grated orange rind
1/2 c molasses
1/2 c honey
1 c hot milk

Okay, let's cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy to begin with, then beat in the egg. Finally, add molasses, honey and orange rind. Sift together the flour, soda, spices and salt. Add flour mixture alternately with hot milk, beating on low speed after each addition until smooth. Pour batter into greased and floured 9x9" or try 2 round cake pans. Bake at 350F for at least 35 min (probably shorter for the layer pans). Serve with whatever you like with your gingerbread.

You can serve this with a strawberry sauce - it's very pretty. Pure a 1/2 pint of strawberries and press through a sieve. Mash 1/2 pint of strawberries with some lemon juice and sugar. Add the pure.

ginger cake

1/2 c molasses
1/2 c shortening
1/2 c sugar
2 c AP flour
1 rounded tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cloves, cinnamon and ginger

Pour 1 c boiling water over molasses, sugar and shortening. Sift together the dries and add to the sugar mixture. Pour into 8x8" pan. Bake at 350F for 35-40 min.

apple bundt cake

3 medium sized tart apples
6 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 3/4 c sifted cake flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 eggs
2 c sugar
1 c vegetable oil
1/3 c orange juice

Peel, quarter and core apples, then slice very thinly into bowl. Sprinkle with the 6 tbsp sugar and the cinnamon. Toss lightly.

Sift flour, baking powder and salt onto wax paper. Beat eggs in large bowl with electric mixer on high speed until foamy. Add sugar slowly while continuing to beat until mixture is thick and fluffy. Add the oil in a thin steady stream while beating until the mixture is well blended. Add the dry ingredients one third at a time, alternating with the orange juice, beating with wooden spoon until batter is smooth.

Spoon one third of the batter into a greased 10" Bundt or angel cake tube pan. Drain apple of any accumulated liquid. Arrange half the slices evenly over batter. Top with another third of the batter, then the remaining apples and remaining batter. Bake at 350F for 90 min or until top springs back.

Cool thoroughly in the pan or wire rack before removing to serve.

lemon yogurt cake

3/4 c butter
1 1/2 c sugar
5 eggs 
1 tbsp finely shredded lemon peel
1/4 c lemon juice
3 c AP flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 c plain yogurt
1/2 c sugar
1/2 c honey
1/2 c water
2 tbsp lemon juice

In large bowl cream together the butter and the 1 1/2 c sugar about 6-8 min or until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Blend in peel and the 1/4 c lemon juice. Stir together flour, baking powder, soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with yogurt, beating well after each addition. Turn into a greased and floured 10" fluted tube pan. Bake at 350F for 55-60 min or until cake tests done. Cool in pan 10 min. Turn out onto wire rack over waxed paper.

In small saucepan combine the remaining sugar, the honey, water and the 2 tbsp lemon juice. Heat, stirring constantly, just until sugar dissolves. Pierce the warm cake with a long tined fork. Slowly spoon lemon mixture over the cake until all is absorbed. Cool completely.

brown sugar pound cake

2 1/2 c sifted cake flour
1 1/2 c unsalted butter, softened
2 1/4 c firmly packed dark brown sugar
6 eggs
5 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
XXX sugar

Butter and lightly flour a 10x4" angel cake tube pan. Sift flour onto wax paper. Beat butter in large bowl with electric mixer until creamy and fluffy. Add brown sugar, a few tbspfuls at a time, beating 1-2 min after each addition. Beat in eggs, one at a time, and continue to beat until mixture is very light and fluffy, about 5 min. Beat in vanilla and lemon juice. Turn mixer to low speed and gradually blend in flour. Spoon into prepared pan. Bake at 325 F for 1 hour 20 min (80 min). Cool in pan on wire rack for 20 min. Remove from pan and cool completely. Lightly dust with XXX sugar before serving.

carrot cake

1 1/3 c sugar
1 1/3 c water
1 c raisins OR candied fruit
1 tbsp butter
2 large finely grated carrots
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp nutmeg

Simmer all the above ingredients for 5 min, then cover and let rest 12 hr. Then add:

1 c chopped walnuts
2 1/2 c sifted AP flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder

Bake in 2 oiled loaf pans or 1 tube pan at 275 F for 2 hr. Cool.

raisin spice loaf cake

1 c brown sugar, packed
1 c seeded raisins
1 1/4 c water
1/2 c shortening
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice

Boil the above ingredients for 5 min. Chill.

2 c sifted AP flour
i tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Sift dry ingredients and stir into first mixture. Pour into greased wax paper lined 9x5x3" loaf pan. Bake at 350 F for 55-60 min. Turn out onto rack, remove paper and cool. Serve plain or frost with almond butter frosting.

blueberry yogurt cake (betty nixon from pouch cove)

1 1/2 c AP flour
1/2 c sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 butter
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3 c blueberries (fresh or frozen)

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, butter, egg and vanilla. Mix well and press into a 9" springform pan. Top with blueberries.

2 c sour cream or yogurt
1/2 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Combine ingredients, mix until smooth and pour over berries. Bake at 350 F for 60-70 min or until golden. Serve warm or cold.

almond angel food cake with mango pure (retreat)

6 egg whites
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c + 1 tbsp superfine sugar
1/2 c sifted cake flour
1/2 c (2.5 oz) finely ground almonds
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/3 c water
2 tbsp granulated sugar
3 ripe mangos
  1. In large bowl beat egg whites until frothy. Add cream of tartar and salt; continue beating until soft peaks form. Continue beating while gradually adding superfine sugar. Beat until stiff.
  2. Sift 2 tablespoons of the flour over the egg whites. Gently fold into mixture. Repeat with the remaining flour, 2 tablespoons at a time. Fold in nuts, then vanilla and almond extracts.
  3. Transfer mixture to a 9" tube pan. Bake at  325F for 45 min, or until the cake pulls away from the sides of the pan. Invert pan onto rack and cool thoroughly before removing cake.
  4. In small saucepan, combine water and granulated sugar. Heat until dissolved. Increase heat and boil until just beginning to colour, about 6 min. Do not stir the syrup.
  5. Remove the mango pulp from skin and discard pit. Transfer pulp to food processor and process until smooth. Add sugar syrup and process to mix. Serve with cake.

chocolate raspberry mousse cake


3 eggs, separated
1/3 c sugar  75 mL
1/2 c AP flour  125 mL
2 tbsp cocoa  25 mL
  1. Beat yolks with 1/4 c of the sugar until very pale. Beat whites until soft peaks form, then gradually beat in remaining sugar until stiff. Fold whites into yolk mixture. Sift flour and cocoa on top and gently fold in. 
  2. Pour into buttered 8" (2 L) springform pan. Bake at 350 F for 30-35 min. Run knife around edge of cake and let cool on wire rack.

raspberry syrup

1/4 c sugar  50 mL
1/4 c water  50 mL
2 tbsp raspberry liqueur OR Amaretto OR orange flavoured liqueur  25 mL
  1. In small saucepan, combine sugar and water; cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves, about 1 min. Stir in liqueur and cool.

raspberry mousse

1/4 c water  50 mL
2 pkg frozen raspberries, thawed (600 g altogether)
3/4 c sugar  175 mL
1 1/2 envelopes gelatin
2 tbsp lemon juice  25 mL
2 tbsp raspberry liqueur  25 mL
2 c whipping cream  500 mL
  1. In small saucepan, sprinkle gelatin over water and let stand for 5 min to soften. Pass berries through a food mill to pure and remove seeds (or process in a food processor, then sieve to remove seeds). You should have about 2 c (500 mL).
  2. Transfer pure to separate saucepan. Add sugar and lemon juice; cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar has dissolved, about 5 min. Stir in liqueur; transfer to a large bowl. 
  3. Heat gelatin until dissolved over low heat; stir into raspberry mixture.
  4. Chill, stirring occasionally, over a larger bowl of ice and water, for about 20 min or until mixture is the consistency of raw egg white. 
  5. Beat whipping cream until soft peaks form; fold into cooled raspberry mixture.

to assemble

  1. Remove ring from springform. Cut cake into 3-4 layers; reserve 2 layers and freeze remaining layer for another use. 
  2. Sprinkle cut side of each layer with raspberry syrup. 
  3. Place one layer, syrup side up, in a 9" springform pan. Reserving 1/2 c of the mousse for garnish, pour in half the mousse. Top with second layer of cake, then pour in enough of the mousse to come almost to the top of the pan. Smooth surface. Refrigerate until firm, 1-2 hr.

chocolate glaze

4 oz semisweet chocolate  125 g
1/4 c whipping cream  50 mL
  1. Melt chocolate with cream, stirring until smooth. Let cool to room temperature. While still spreadable, pour over mousse cake and spread evenly. 
  2. Spoon remaining mousse into a pastry bag fitted with a small plain tip. Pipe in 3 concentric circles over top of cake. Pull toothpick through circles to form a spiderweb design. Chill until ready to serve.

lazy daisy cake

2 1/2 c sifted AP flour
4 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 c sugar
3/4 c firmly packed brown sugar, sieved
3/4 c shortening
1 1/4 c milk
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla


1/4 c butter, melted
1/2 c firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 c shredded coconut
3 tbsp whipping cream

Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar together. Add the brown sugar, shortening and 1 c of the milk. Beat for 300 strokes by hand or 2 minutes on low speed with a mixer. Add the final 1/4 c of milk, the eggs and vanilla, then beat for another 300 strokes or 2 minutes.

Pour into well-greased and floured 9x13x2" pan. Bake at 350F for 40-45 minutes or until just done.

Combine the topping ingredients and spread on warm cake. Place under the broiler to brown slightly.

This was a big favourite around our house when I was little. It's from Ann Pillsbury's Baking Book, 1950.

spice cake with banana frosting

2 c sifted AP flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 c sugar
1/3 c firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 c shortening
3/4 c milk + 2 tbsp milk
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla


1/4 c butter
1/4 tsp salt
3 c sifted XXX sugar
1/3 c mashed banana (1 medium) mixed with 1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla (opt)

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, spices and sugar. Add the brown sugar, shortening and 3/4 c milk. Beat for 300 strokes by hand or 2 minutes at low speed with an electric mixer. Then add the 2 tbsp milk, eggs and vanilla; beat for another 300 strokes or 2 minutes at medium speed. Pour into 2 well-greased and floured 8" layer pans. Bake at 350F for 30-35 minutes. Cool, then frost with banana frosting.

Make frosting by creaming the butter and salt, then blending in the XXX sugar alternately with the mashed banana. Add vanilla if desired.

I always requested this for my birthday when I was small and I still like it!