This recipe comes from an tattered paperback copy of the Betty Crocker’s Cookbook I received ~20 years ago when I moved out on my own. The recipe language is rather sparse and yet I turn to this book time and again for some very delicious things. This cake is certainly among them.
Applesauce Spice Cake
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 2 hours
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. table salt
- 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon (I used Ceylon Cinnamon from Penzeys)
- 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
- 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1 1/2 cups unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cups currants
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/3 cup dried tart cherries
- Place rack in the medium position of your oven. Preheat to 350°F. Spray a 13″x9″ baking pan with non-stick spray and line with a sheet of parchment paper to form a sling along the long sides.
- Whisk together the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
- Combine sugar, shortening and applesauce in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on low for 30 seconds until it forms a paste. Add the water and eggs; beat on low for another 30 seconds to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients, beat on low until just combined and then raise speed to medium high for 2 minutes.
- Add the dried fruit and beat on medium for ~30 seconds until well combined.
- Scrap the batter into the prepared pan and distribute evenly. A couple of short drops of the filled pan onto the counter will help even out the batter and remove any air pockets that may exist (at least that’s what my mother told me).
- Bake for 60 minutes, rotating the pan for halfway through baking. Check doneness with a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake. It should come out clean with no damp batter sticking to it.
- Allow cake to cool, in the pan, for 15 minutes, on a cooling rack. Slide a knife along the non-parchment sides of the pan to loosen the cake and then remove the cake using the sling. Carefully remove the parchment from the bottom of the cake and allow to cool completely.
- Dust with powdered sugar, drizzle with glaze or frost with something flavorful and tasty. Or just eat it as is ’cause it’s pretty darn tasty by itself.
You could use 1 type of dried fruit, such as 1 cup of currants or dried cranberries rather than a mix.
The original recipe also called for 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts. I left those out since this was for a potluck event and you never know who will have an allergy.