Spice Cake with penuche frosting

The first Friday of the month is “guest chef” lunch at work. Ardith Ketchum, who schooled me in the muffin bake-off made three soups and three sweet breads. The food was fabulous, and she’s graciously let me post her recipes this week.

SPICE NUT CAKE – Ardith Ketchum, adapted from the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon soda
3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup shortening
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup buttermilk or sour milk
3 eggs
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Sift together first 7 ingredients.
  3. Add shortening, brown sugar, and buttermilk. Mix until all flour is moistened. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed on an electric mixer. Add eggs; beat 2 minutes more.
  4. Stir in nuts.
  5. Bake in two greased and lightly floured 9-inch round pans, or a 9×13 pan, for 30 to 35 minutes.
  6. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely.
  7. Fill and frost with Penuche Frosting (below)


  1. In a sauce pan, add 1 cup brown sugar to 1/2 C melted butter. Bring to boiling.
  2. Stir 1 minute or until slightly thickened.
  3. Cool 15 minutes.
  4. Add 1/4 cup hot milk and beat smooth.
  5. Beat in enough of 3 1/4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar for spreading consistency.

Frosts two 8- or 9-inch layers.

4 thoughts on “Spice Cake with penuche frosting”

  1. Doug in Exile

    Why didn’t you ever bring any goodies to the Q? Or do you cook to relieve sexual tension??? 😉

  2. Actually, for the first year I was there I brought cookies once every other week.

  3. Doug in Exile

    And not one for your Safety Pilot…sob…..or wait, maybe I just don’t remember!

  4. I could get fat just *reading* your blog, Jim. I may try the spice cake for our annual Derby Day party as it sounds like something that would go nicely with a julip.

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