My grandma made this cake for my birthday every year.  As an adult, I’ve livened it up a little — more cocoa, a dash of ginger and cayenne to give it a kick.  But it still retains the perfect blend of moist, chocolatey goodness, studded with chocolate chips and raisins, with an interesting overlay of spices that keep me wanting more.  You don’t even need a mixer to make it, and it does well as muffins or in the bundt pan called for.

Recipe by Judy Miller

  • 2 cups flour
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa (use up to 6 if you want a richer cake)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon EACH: cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, salt
  • pinch cayenne (optional)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups applesauce (1lb can)
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins (coat with flour first to separate clumps) OR 3/4 cups raisins and 3/4 cups chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease & flour a large Bundt pan or prepare 16 muffin tins.
  2. Combine dry ingredients together.
  3. Add wet ingredients, then stir in raisins and chocolate chips. Don’t over mix.
  4. Bake in prepared pan 60 minutes or until edges pull away from pan and center is done when tested with a toothpick.
  5. Remove from pan and cool.  Dust with powdered sugar.