Waking Earth Cake
Celebrate the first stirrings of
spring with this unusual not-too-sweet cake, a tasty way to begin fortifying ourselves for the new season ahead. It is sweetened
with iron-rich molasses instead of sugar, and it uses no dairy or eggs. In fact, you will be surprised at how anything with
so few ingredients could taste so good! This adaptation of a simple recipe by Peaceful Cook Harriet Kofalk is a nourishing
tonic for the last cold days (we hope!) of late winter.
The recipe includes a magical surprise
idea to celebrate the seeds that are beginning to stir deep underground. You may want to top it with vanilla ice cream, a
beautiful way to represent the snow covering this waking earth. Think of the cake hiding its surprise gifts just as the earth
gestates the waking seeds
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
cup unbleached white flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup unsulphured molasses
cup hot water
1/4 cup blackstrap molasses
optional: small non-meltable surprises for hiding inside cake (a clean coin,
a polished crystal, a ring, a gold or silver charm)
optional: yogurt, ice cream or non-dairy frozen dessert
1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. In a large bowl, combine both
flours and baking soda. Stir in the vegetable oil and the unsulphured molasses. This mixture will resemble crumb topping.
Remove 1 cup of it and reserve.
3. In a small bowl, combine the hot
water and the blackstrap molasses. Add to the flour mixture remaining in the large bowl and mix well.
4. Now is the time, if you desire,
to stir in any one or more of the non-melting surprises. Finding one of them in your piece of cake is good luck - but BE SURE
to warn your eating audience to prevent accidental choking or broken teeth!
5. Pour batter into a greased 9-inch
square baking pan, sprinkle with the reserved crumb topping, and bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the
center comes out clean.
6. Serve warm, with a dollop of yogurt
or vanilla ice cream, if you like.