Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Today's questionable recipe: Putting meat into your cake

Today's recipe would have been perfect for last year's Halloween Countdown.1 It combines two things you don't often see combined — cake and meat. (Maybe it should be served with a side of scary gelatin.)

The recipe is for sausage cake2, and it comes from a 1970s staplebound booklet by Nordic-Ware titled "Unusual Old World and American Recipes."

Basically, you just mix the raw pork right into the cake batter.

"You definitely can’t lick the bowl," says Rachel Tayse, who wrote about a slight variation of this recipe on her Hounds In The Kitchen blog.

Tayse also writes: "The resulting cake is surprisingly tasty to the medieval palate. If you use a mildly flavored sausage, the pork lends very little flavor. Nuts and fruit stud the cake. The texture is rich and dense like any spice cake."

So, here's the verbatim recipe from the Nordic-Ware booklet. You might also want to compare and contrast it with the one Tayse posted (some of the fruits & spices are different).

Sausage cake
  • 1 lb. pork sausage
  • 1½ cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup cold strong coffee
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
In mixing bowl, combine meat and sugars and stir until mixture is well blended. Add eggs and beat well. Onto piece of waxed paper, sift flour, ginger, baking powder and pumpkin pie spice. Stir baking soda into coffee. Add flour mixture and coffee alternately to meat mixture, beating well after each addition. Pour boiling water over raisins and let and 5 minutes; drain well and dry raisins in cloth. Fold raisins and walnuts into cake batter. Turn batter into well-greased and floured mini-BUNDT Pan. Bake 1½ hours at 350° or until done. Cool 15 min. in pan before turning out.

1. Two weeks before Halloween, I'm still undecided about how to mark the holiday here on the blog. I'm leaning toward a short series about some of my favorite spooky tales and films that fly under the radar of mainstream culture.
2. Coincidentally, Sarah, Joan and I just read "Sausages," a Transylvanian folk tale retold by Ruth Manning-Sanders, earlier this week. The moral of that story, I think, was "always be polite to Satan's grandmother."