If you are like me, you are eagerly awaiting Tuesday and Election Day. In the past, Election Day was treated as a celebration and they celebrated with cake, of course! I first became aware of election day cakes when I was brainstorming ideas for my Boxcar Children book with an election plot, THE ELECTION DAY DILEMMA.
Original Election Day cakes were more like a cross between a ginger-spiced bread and a fruitcake, and the recipes called for yeast to make the bread rise. I don’t like cooking with yeast and I’m not crazy about fruitcakes so I decided to do my own, much easier version. This is basically gingerbread with a glaze and it’s perfect for all and Election Day.
So without further ado, here’s the recipe:
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 cup unsulfured light molasses (not blackstrap)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
1 cup packed dark-brown sugar (light brown sugar could be substituted)
1 large egg
1/3 cup golden raisins or other dried fruit
2 cups confectioners’ sugar plus ½ cup (set aside)
2 to 4 Tbsp water or milk
¼ tsp vanilla
Whisk together adding liquid slowly until the desired consistency
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees with a rack set in the center. Generously butter two 9-inch round cake pans.
- Boil water in a small saucepan or microwave-safe bowl, then stir molasses until molasses has completely dissolved. Set aside to cool.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda and salt.
- Using an electric mixer, mix butter and brown sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Add egg; mix until combined.
- When molasses/water mixture is cool, add flour mixture to butter/sugar/egg mixture, alternating with the molasses mixture, scraping down sides as necessary. Stir in raisins or other dried fruit. Batter will be very wet. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
They will look like this:
6. when cakes have cooled, place one layer on serving plate, cover with glaze, top with second layer, cover with remaining glaze. When ready to serve, sift or sprinkle set aside confectioners’ sugar over the top. (The glaze will soak into the cake as it sits, making it nice and moist, but you won’t be able to see it. That’s why you want the extra sugar for the top.)