I found this recipe in a 1942 Fannie Farmer cookbook for junior cooks… which probably explains why it is such an easy and foolproof recipe to make. This delicious, wonderfully light cake makes up quickly, and although it requires only two eggs, it tastes very much like a sponge cake.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk (see note below)
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sugar
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Prepare an 8-inch square cake pan. (I line the cake pan with aluminum foil and then butter and flour the aluminum foil… this method makes it very easy to remove the cake.)
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt onto a piece of wax paper.
Heat the milk and add the butter to it.
Beat the eggs until thick. (I use a small electric hand mixer.) Add the sugar a little at a time, continuing to beat the mixture until it is smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla.
Stir in the flour mixture. Add the hot milk and stir just enough to blend all the ingredients thoroughly.
Bake about 25 minutes until the cake shrinks slightly from the edge and the center feels springy and shows no mark when you touch it lightly with your fingertip.
The recipe says to frost the cake, sprinkle it with powdered sugar, or spread it with jam or jelly. We’re not fond of frosting here, so we eat it plain or with ice cream.
Note: It is very important that the milk is HOT… not boiling, but heated almost to that point. If cold, room temperature, or even warm milk is used in this recipe, the texture of this cake will be heavy and dense. And no, the hot milk will not cook the eggs because you will be adding it to the batter in a thin stream as you continue to stir.