Raisin Pound Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Rich and fragrant with spices, this flavorful pound cake is flecked throughout with apple and raisins. The grated apple makes this cake moist and helps it too stay fresh for days. This cake is delicious served either plain, with a sprinkling of powdered sugar, or topped with a sweet orange glaze.
Recipe type: Dessert | Butter Cake
Serves: 8 to 10
  • 1 cup dark raisins
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons grated orange zest (1 orange)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light or dark brown sugar (or a combination of both)
  • 4 large eggs, warmed to room temperature
  • 1 cup grated, peeled apple (about 2 medium sized apples)
Orange Glaze:
  • 1 cup confectioner's (powdered) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest (about ½ orange)
  • 4 to 5 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ¼ cup dark raisins
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare one 9-inch Bundt pan or fluted tube pan; lightly grease the pan with shortening and dust with flour.
  1. Plump the dark raisins and golden raisins by steaming in a colander in a double boiler; steam the raisins about 1 minute or until softened. Thoroughly drain, or spread the raisins on paper toweling to dry. Tip: Create a double boiler by filling a saucepan with 2 inches of water and bringing it to a simmer. Place the fruit in a steamer or plastic or wire mesh colander on top of the simmering water, the upper pan should not touch the water.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg; sift or whisk together to mix. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter, orange zest, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Tip: To cream, start by placing the butter and orange zest in the bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed begin by beating the butter and orange zest about 1 minute until it is smooth and light in color. With the mixer still on medium speed, slowly add the granulated sugar to the butter, either one tablespoon at a time, or in a very slow steady stream, taking from 4 to 8 minutes to add all of the sugar, and beating until the butter and sugar are fully incorporated and the mixture is a light, or pale yellow color, with a fluffy texture. Slowly add the brown sugar over an additional 3 to 4 minutes. While adding the sugars, stop the mixer occasionally to scrape the mixture off the paddle and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula so the mixture blends evenly.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating until thoroughly mixed. Tip: For each egg, crack the egg into a small bowl and whisk with a fork to thoroughly break up the egg before adding to the creamed mixture. Start with the mixer on low speed so the liquid from the egg doesn’t splatter, once the egg is partially mixed increase the speed to medium. Each egg should be fully incorporated into the mixture before adding the next egg, taking about one minute to blend in each egg.
  5. With the mixer on low speed, gradually add about ½ of the flour mixture, mix just until blended, and then add the remaining half, mix just until blended.
  6. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold the apples and raisins into the batter.
  7. Bake: Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the back of a large spoon. Bake 25 minutes. Then lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees F, and bake another 70 or 80 minutes or until a long toothpick, wooden skewer, or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Place pan on a wire cooling rack to cool for 10 to 15 minutes then remove cake from the pan and place the cake on the wire cooling rack to finish cooling.
Orange Glaze:
  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine confectioner's sugar and orange zest. Add 4 teaspoons orange juice and stir until smooth. Add additional teaspoon of orange juice if needed to make a good drizzling consistency. The glaze should be like a soft icing, but thin enough that it will run down over the sides of the cake.
  2. Drizzle glaze over the cake, allowing the glaze to drip down the sides.
  1. In a small bowl, combine dark raisins and golden raisins. Toss with sugar to coat. Sprinkle a few raisins over the orange glaze and arrange the remainder around base of cake.
Adapted From: Dalsass, Diana, The New Good Cake Book, W.W. Norton & Company, New York, 1997
Recipe Notes
Pan: One 9" Bundt Pan Prep: Greased and Floured Starting Oven Temp: 375° Storage:Covered, Room Temperature

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