Hard Money Cake Recipe from 1877

I’d never heard of money cakes until finding this recipe in an 1877 cookbook. Photos of money cakes on the Internet show rolled up singles fashioned in the shape of a cake and given at weddings and graduations.

This cake is made of two batters—one represents gold, the other represents silver.

Since the original recipe called for 8 eggs, I calculated the portions for using 2 eggs. This smaller portion still made an 8 x 8 cake.

To make the sour milk required for this recipe, pour a cup of milk into a glass and stir in 1 teaspoon of vinegar. Set aside until needed.

Gold batter:

Cream ¼ cup butter with 1/2 cup sugar. Add yolk of 2 eggs, ½ teaspoon of lemon extract, and ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract.

In a separate bowl, combine 1 cup flour and ¼ teaspoon baking soda, and 1 teaspoon cornstarch powder. (The recipe doesn’t call for salt but add ½ teaspoon of salt if using all-purpose flour.)

Stir flour mixture into wet ingredients, alternating with 1/4 cup sour milk. This makes thick batter. If you prefer, add more milk, teaspoon by teaspoon, until it is the desired consistency.

Set batter aside while making the silver portion.

Silver batter:

Cream ¼ cup butter with 1/2 cup sugar. Whisk 2 egg whites until frothy and add to the mixture. Add ½ teaspoon of almond extract or peach extract. (I used almond extract.)

In a separate bowl, combine 1 cup flour and ¼ teaspoon baking soda, and 1 teaspoon cornstarch powder. (The recipe doesn’t call for salt but add ½ teaspoon of salt if using all-purpose flour.)

Stir flour mixture into wet ingredients, alternating with 1/4 cup sour milk. This batter is white (not silver!) and thinner than the gold batter because of the frothy egg whites.

Spray an 8 x 8 baking pan with cooking spray. Spoon in the batter, alternating gold and silver.

Bake at 350 until done, about 25 to 30 minutes.

This cake needs no icing. If you choose, drizzle on a glaze (powdered sugar mixed with a little water.)

Yummy!

Hard money cakes are more of a coffee cake consistency. With one bite having an almond flavor and the next tasting of lemon, it is a delicious cake. The colors of the baked cake weren’t gold and silver, but food coloring in the batters can enhance this.

This can be a fun cake for celebrations of graduations or job promotions.

This recipe is from Miss Emma Fisher, 1877 cook.

I’d love to hear if you try it.

-Sandra Merville Hart

Sources

Compiled from Original Recipes. Buckeye Cookery and Practical Housekeeping, Applewood Books, 1877.

 

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6 thoughts on “Hard Money Cake Recipe from 1877

  1. Hi–I’m the friend Jeanne shared with. I had never heard of money cake either. I write about my ancestors and the foods they probably cooked in various times of history and various cultures at Ancestors in Aprons. Always happy to find another source for old recipes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Vera! Sounds like we are kindred spirits. 🙂 I like to discover old recipes and the like and share them here. I’ll have to visit your blog, too! I’m happy to hear that you’ve been writing about similar things. Welcome!

      Liked by 1 person

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