Berlin Beer Cake

I love beer. I love baking.  I love baking with a beer in one hand and a spoon in the other. I also love baking with beer as an ingredient. I came across Beer and Good Food, a cookbook published in 1958 in a used bookstore, and was intrigued by the selected of vintage beer-containing recipes within. And the front and back covers:

Ok, technically I may be violating copyright by posting that image, but then again, I might not be- copyright law between 1923 and 1963 is tricky.  Anyhow, the book has some delightful-looking recipes, but the one that sold me on it was for Berlin Beer Cake, mainly because it doesn’t have eggs: I’m a sucker for recipes that are vegan or easily veganized without weird replacements. I’m also a sucker for cakes with nuts. Especially hazelnuts.

The recipe called for 1 cup of molasses. That’s a lot of molasses. Instead, I used 1/4 cup molasses plus 9 Tbs brown sugar and 3 tbs water- you replace molasses with sugar in a 3:1 ratio. I found a recipe on Foodista for pretty much the exact same recipe, only with an additional cup of sugar added. I don’t think that is necessary, though it would make the cake a more decadent dessert.

Berlin Beer Cake

  • 1 cup molasses
  • ½ cup non-hydrogenated soy margarine
  • 12 oz beer
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 ⅔ cups sifted flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  1. 1 cup coarsely chopped filberts or pecans
  2. Combine molasses, butter and beer in a saucepan and heat until the butter melts. Stir in raisins and let the mixture cool 15 minutes.
  3. Sift together dry ingredients. Stir in the nuts.
  4. When the beer mixture is cool, pour it over dry ingredients and stir until smooth.
  5. Pour batter into greased and floured tube pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Top with powdered sugar, a simple glaze or icing, or drizzle with agave.

I wrote a post on baking with beer and included this cake.


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