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Hurry Up Cake from the Joy of Cooking


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I dont know if i have this post in the right place but i told my mom i would ask about it here.

for YEARS she has made this Hurry Up Cake recipe in the Joy of Cooking cookbook.

for some unknown reason..... the cake is just not rising anymore.

she is following the directions that call for a 9 by 13 baking pan but the cake barely has risen at all.

yet when you touch it... it springs back and the sides have pulled away from the pan.

inside.... the cake is barely baked and is hardly a half inch high. LOL its pitiful.

she is using fresh baking powder and has not forgotten any of the ingredients.

this recipe calls for only 1 3/4 cups of flour and a cup of sugar..... BUT... the pan the recipe calls for is a

9 by 13 inch. such a BIG pan for a small bowl of batter. she doesnt seem to rememeber if she used a smaller pan before or not.

if she uses a small cake tin .... like maybe a 9 by 9 inch round.... would that be better?

maybe she could up the baking powder to 2 tsps from 1 3/4 tsp.

she made this cake frequently when i was a kid and now that i am visiting her for a while she thought she would try it again..... but its not comming out like the well baked fluffed up cake it was years ago.

anyway....i dont know what to tell her as i am not much of a baker. LOL

if anyone is familiar with this cake from the Joy of Cooking..... i would like to hear from you to help my mom

figure out whats going on with this cake.


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I haven't made this cake, so I don't have personal experience with it, but I did look up the recipe. The only thing I can see that might be an issue is the temperature of the ingredients. It says to have them all at 75F, which to me seems quite a bit warmer than usual for a cake. Maybe her ingredients were too cold?

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inside.... the cake is barely baked and is hardly a half inch high. LOL its pitiful.

she is using fresh baking powder and has not forgotten any of the ingredients.

To me this suggests that the pan size is not the culprit: if the pan were too large you'd expect the cake to be overdone, not underdone. So if it's not the pan size, and it's not the ingredients... have you checked the oven's temperature recently? Is it possible that it's not heating up properly anymore?

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations

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well.... heres what i found out. her baking powder is about to be out of date in a month or so.... and she didnt have the ingredients at 75 deg.

so... maybe that was it.

i bought her some new baking powder and she will try again.

its not altitude.... we are here at sea level.

if it doesnt work this time..... then who knows what it is.

she did tell me she tried several times in the past to make the cake and it just wasnt working.

what on earth could be difference from 20 years ago to now?

same kitchen, same mixer, new oven and same altitude.

i remember this cake well from my childhood back in the 50's. i dont think she had time back then

to let the indgredients sit out to become 75 deg. and i dont think she even ever bothered to use cake flour either.... but the cake came out beautifully.... and did so well into my adult years.

when i get back home from this visit with her..... i'll try making it myself and see if it comes out right.

if it doesnt work..... then i dont know what it could be. LOL

we'll see.

thanks for your comments.

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