This was one of my Grandma's favorite holiday cakes. It brings a look of surprise to peoples eyes when you just mention the name. Candied fruit may be substituted for Raisins and Walnuts

Cleo
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Ingredients

18
Original recipe yields 18 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Lightly grease and flour one 9 x 13 inch baking pan.

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  • Combine water, sugar, shortening, salt, cocoa, raisins, and spices in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, and continue to boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and nuts.

  • Combine flour and baking soda. Stir into boiled mixture, and thoroughly mix. Pour into prepared pan, and spread evenly.

  • Bake for 50 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool.

Nutrition Facts

424.3 calories; 5.5 g protein; 58.5 g carbohydrates; 0 mg cholesterol; 271.9 mg sodium. Full Nutrition

Reviews (7)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
08/29/2002
Absolutely fantastic however 50 min baking time was too long. I suggest checking this cake after 30 min. Very tasty and easy. Enjoy! Read More
(11)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
06/11/2003
This cake was pretty good. It had a nice flavour but was a little dry. Also the cooking time provided in the recipe was too long. I would reccomend adding some more shortening or oil to the cake to decrease dryness. It wasn't a huge hit with my kids so I'd say you'd be best off serving this cake to adults with coffee or tea. Read More
(8)
7 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 4
  • 4 star values: 2
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
08/29/2002
Absolutely fantastic however 50 min baking time was too long. I suggest checking this cake after 30 min. Very tasty and easy. Enjoy! Read More
(11)
Rating: 3 stars
06/11/2003
This cake was pretty good. It had a nice flavour but was a little dry. Also the cooking time provided in the recipe was too long. I would reccomend adding some more shortening or oil to the cake to decrease dryness. It wasn't a huge hit with my kids so I'd say you'd be best off serving this cake to adults with coffee or tea. Read More
(8)
Rating: 5 stars
08/08/2003
I used craisins for part of the raisins and it was delicious. It was dark and spicy and we topped it with cool-whip. I think it would be wonderful with lemon or custard sauce. It was almost like my own grandmother's black cake. Read More
(7)
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Rating: 4 stars
08/29/2002
My daughter is unable to have milk products so this was a great cake to make for her birthday. Read More
(5)
Rating: 4 stars
06/15/2010
I saw some complaints that this cake is dry. Suggest that you use butter because shortening does not give much moisture. Also the taste will be superior. A good cake otherwise and great for slicing thin with a cup of tea. Read More
(4)
Rating: 5 stars
08/14/2011
For people mentioning that this cake is dry. This cake recipe was developed in war time to fill the needs of cooks with limited ingredients. If you find yourself without eggs or dairy this might be a great cake to make. When we make it I always add more fruit than it calls for to keep in moist. Apple works great in it. Read More
(3)
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Rating: 5 stars
12/17/2019
Coffee in place of water! Read More