We were looking for an old Brownie Schrumpf recipe. Houlton native Martha Dow, now residing in Midlothian, Md., where she keeps track of us online, wrote recently to ask for a recipe that’s 35 years old.
“I had it for my birthday cake growing up. My mother had cut it out of the Bangor Daily News from Brownie Schrumpf’s column,” she wrote. “The recipe was called Eggless, Butterless, Milkless Cake. A friend has a young son with severe egg allergies and can’t have dairy either and I thought of this recipe. Can you help me find it?”
Martha looked on the Web and got 60 results, but what she really wanted was the recipe she remembered from her childhood. I looked in the cookbook “Memories from Brownie’s Kitchen,” but it is not there. I crossed my fingers and asked here if one of you inveterate recipe clippers might have this in the pile of recipes you have saved over the years.
By golly, Anita Angotti of Caribou came through with it. She sent along a note saying, “The search for this recipe took me down recipe memory lane — a wonderful journey.”
So here it is — economical, quick, tasty, as well as good for people with dairy allergies. The nuts are optional. Brownie’s recipe says, “Slices of this cake … were always welcomed in our ‘dinner pail.’ Baked in a bread tin, the cake sliced easily. You may like to bake it in a square pan with less thickness and cut in squares.”
I baked mine in a 9-by-9-inch pan. By the way, I was trying two different recipes side by side at the same time (probably a bad idea), and accidentally dropped in an additional quarter-teaspoon of cloves — but it was fine. In fact, it was probably a good thing.
Eggless, Butterless, Milkless Cake
Yields one 9×9-inch cake.
1 cup brown sugar packed
1 cup water
1 cup seedless raisins
1/3 cup cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup nutmeats (optional)
In a saucepan combine the sugar, water, raisins, cooking oil and spices and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Cool. Mix and sift together the flour, baking powder, soda and salt, and stir into the cooled mixture. Add the nutmeats if you use them. Bake in a greased pan at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Dust with confectioner’s sugar if you wish.
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