Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Applesauce Raisin Cake

I love applesauce cake but hadn't had it in years. When I was growing up, we had a wonderful couple who lived with us. They became really part of our family. The wife, Sally, took care of me and my brother and sister and cooked, cleaned, ironed and did just about any other domestic chore she needed or wanted to do. Sally was always very patient with me, teaching me to make simple things, like puddings and tea cakes. She brought an applesauce cake recipe with her, that she loved to make, and I loved to eat! I have long lost her recipe, which makes me sad, but this applesauce cake brings back all those fond memories of her and her husband Lee and the fun times we had. Her husband, Lee, took care of the outside responsibilities and drove us where we needed to go. It was wonderful having them in our lives.
This recipe is from the cookbook I found at a local flea market, having already made this, which is fabulous!
I gathered the ingredients for this recipe and began making the cake, when I suddenly realized that there was no egg mentioned in the recipe. I read, and reread, then looked over the directions and still no mention of eggs. Remembering back to this cookie, I decided to add the egg and hope for the best!
Well, the cake came out great. It's moist and full of flavor of the spices and the raisins are a perfect addition. The original recipe also calls for black walnuts, but not having them on hand, I could have used just regular walnuts but I opted not to use any nuts. But if you like nuts in your cake, go ahead and include them. I also swapped out a small amount of the granulated sugar for light brown sugar.
I halved the cake and baked it in a loaf pan. Since I added the egg at the end, rather than when I should have, it may have been a factor in the rise, or lack of it! But , oh the flavor!

Applesauce Raisin Cake ( adapted from "America's Best Recipes State Fair Blue Ribbon Winners"

15 oz. seedless raisins
8 oz. black walnuts, finely chopped ( I omitted this)
2 cups sugar ( I used 1/2 cup less and added 1/2 cup of light brown sugar)
Pinch salt
1 tbsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
2 eggs
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room. temp.
2 1/2 cups AP flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 cups applesauce, chunky or smooth

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour a tube pan or bundt pan.
1. Cover raisins with 1 inch of water and simmer until soft. Drain and cool.
2. Coat chopped nuts with flour (if using and set aside.)
3. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar on medium speed.
4. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
5. Heat the applesauce til very warm ,then stir in the baking soda to this applesauce mixture.
6. Add this mixture to the creamed butter/sugar mixture.
7. Stir in the flour and salt and combine til well mixed.
8. Add raisins and nuts ( if using).
9. Pour into prepared pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes or til toothpick inserted comes out clean.
10. Remove from oven and let it set 10 minutes covered with a tea towel.
11. Turn out onto a plate and allow to cool completely before slicing.
*This kind of cake gets even better the next day*

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