Did Ruth make Date Cake while Aunt Marian was living with her? . . . . and did Aunt Marian love it and insert it into her cookbook?
The many food spatters and stains clearly indicate that at least one of the recipes on this page was a favorite of Aunt Marian’s. I’m guessing it was the Date Cake—though I haven’t yet made the California Upside Down Fruit Cake, so I could be wrong.
The handwritten recipe is a bit sparse on details. Here’s how I made the Date Cake:
1 cup water
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 cup chopped dates
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350° F. Stir baking soda into the water and pour over the dates. In another bowl combine the sugar, eggs, and butter; then add the date mixture and stir. Add flour and stir until all ingredients are combined into a batter. Stir the walnuts into the batter. Put into a loaf pan that has been greased and floured. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean.
This recipe is super easy to make and delicious—though I would consider it to be more of a date nut bread than a cake. It is definitely a keeper, and I feel certain that I’ll make it often.