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‘Poor Man’s Cake’ yummy if missing water is added in

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Dear Jeanne: I know you mainly change recipes to cut down on the fat, but I have a different problem with a recipe that I cut out of the paper. When I tried to make it, it turned into little rocks. My mother used to have a recipe of the same name, and I would love to be able to make it. Can you help? Thanks for your time. — Sandy Weddle, Visalia, Ca.

Dear Sandy: I found another recipe for Poor Man's Cake; it evidently dates back to World War I. The problem seems to be a missing cup of water. This is a lovely, moist spice cake. I was able to cut down the fat quite a bit in the revised recipe and still have it taste yummy. I hope this brings back fond memories for you.


1 cup sugar

2 cups raisins

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

3/4 cup shortening

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup chopped nuts

2 cups flour

Mix well the sugar, raisins, cinnamon, nutmeg and shortening, and boil together for 3 minutes. Cool, pour into a large bowl and add the baking powder, baking soda, vanilla and chopped nuts. Add the flour last. Mix well. Pour into a greased and floured 13 -by-9-by-2-inch pan and bake at 325 F for 25-30 minutes. Scrumptious served warm. Makes 15 servings.


1 cup water

2 cups raisins

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup butter

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/3 cup chopped nuts

1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch pan with nonstick spray.

2. In a small saucepan, place the water, raisins, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg. Boil for 3 minutes. Cool.

3. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and nuts.

4. Add the teaspoon of vanilla to the raisin mixture and mix. Add the raisin mixture to the flour mixture and combine until all the flour is moistened.

5. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven. The cake will be a golden-brown and will spring back when touched lightly with a finger. Makes 15 servings.

Each serving contains: Original Recipe: 321 calories; 16 gm fat; 0 mg cholesterol; 120 mg sodium; 44 gm carbohydrates; 4 gm protein; 2 gm fiber. Revised Recipe: 202 calories; 3 gm fat; 11 mg cholesterol; 164 mg sodium; 36 gm carbohydrates; 3 gm protein; 2 gm fiber.

Beans are now getting their rightful recognition as one of the most healthful and nutritious foods available. My booklet "Beans and Legumes for Every Occasion" is full of cooking tips and tasty recipes. To order, send $3 (check or money order) and a stam ped (55 cents), self-addressed, No. 10 envelope to Beans, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. Jeanne Jones is a consultant on menu planning, recipes and new-product development for major hotels and spas. She is also the author of 32 cookbooks, most recently "Jeanne Jones' Homestyle Cooking Made Healthy" (Rondale Press, $27.95). Send your recipe for revision to: Cook It Light, (Deseret News), P.O. Box 1212, La Jolla, CA 92038. Please include a stamped (55 cents), self-addressed envelope. © King Features Syndicate Inc.