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Vintage Recipes and Recollections



A couple of notes about the recipe: 1) Mom would often substitute margarine or even vegetable oil for the traditional solid shortening with good result. 2) When adding the egg whites, beat them lightly with a fork before adding.

This cake holds a special place in my heart. It popped into my head when I was chatting with our neighbour recently.  She was at our door borrowing some cinnamon for cupcakes her daughter was taking to a school bake sale.  In my day this cake was a mainstay for school bake sales an it didn’t take me long to find the well-used recipe in the file.

This cake, credited to G. Blair with whom I’m unfamiliar, is incredibly moist,  with a really lovely chocolate flavour – probably due to the addition of the cold coffee. Mom always iced it with a simple vanilla frosting that may have had a hint of peppermint rather than vanilla.

I can’t honestly remember what our elementary school bake sales were raising money for, but we had them fairly regularly.  Each grade, from one to six, would have a table of baked goods for sale – and it seems to me that we mostly sold things to each other and maybe the volunteer Moms that were helping out.  But we all had to take turns behind the table selling our wares – and, as this all took place a million years ago, we had to be able to count change.  Math not being my strong suit, meant there were many an evening before the bake sale spent at the kitchen table practicing change making. Despite the practice, I’m fairly certain many “customers” left our table with a delicious piece of chocolate cake, and more money than they started with!

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