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Poor Man's Cake
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War Cake

War cake is a simple and delicious cake baked with very basic ingredients. This cake is egg less and does not have milk, butter and sugar that were rationed during the Great depression / war times. 

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 10 People


  • Oven
  • Bundt Cake Pan


  • Raisins – 1 lb about 2 ½ cups
  • Packed light brown sugar – 2 cups
  • Water – 2 cups
  • Vegetable shortening – 4 tbsp
  • Salt – 2 tsp
  • Ground cinnamon – 2 tsp
  • Ground cloves – ½ tsp
  • All purpose flour – 3 cups
  • Baking soda – 2 tsp


  • Combine the brown sugar, raisin, water, shortening, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a large saucepan. I used both the golden and dark raisin.
  • Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook for about 5 mins stirring frequently until it forms a syrupy kind of texture.
  • Take it off the flame and let it cool down to room temperature.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. grease and flour a 10 inch tube pan.
  • In another bowl, whisk together the flour and the baking soda.
  • Once the raisin mixture has cooled, fold in the dry ingredients.
  • Spoon the mixture into the greased pan and bake for 45-50 mins or until the tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean. If the top seems to be browning too quickly, cover with an aluminum foil and continue baking until the center in entirely baked.
  • Cool for 5 mins in the pan and then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Do not be tempted to slice until it cools entirely.
  • Serve with whipped cream or dusted with some confectionary sugar. We like it as is, since the cake itself was sweet enough for us.