Parson's Cake Recipe
Here is a recipe for a gingerbread-like cake which I found in a Victorian cookbook. The ingredients given below are in fact a quarter of the quantities given in the original recipe yet still make a substantial cake. In the book, the dry ingredients are given in breakfastcups and teacups which aren't easily translated into modern measurements, largely due to household cups today not being a standard size.
The cake may be called Parson's Cake as a jibe at parsons who were renowned for not always following the Christian ideal of self-denial; the recipe would have been economical as no expensive butter was used and molasses (also called black treacle) is substituted for sugar, which was a luxury at the time. If anybody has any information on this recipe, please let us know in the comments form below.
- 150g plain flour
- 52g butter
- 10g brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 9 tablespoons molasses
- 1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda, dissolved in a little milk
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- Rub the butter into the flour.
- Add all the other ingredients.
- Bake in a square tin at 170 degrees C. for about 25-30 minutes, watching that it doesn't burn around the edges.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 1 cake