Monday, November 8, 2010

Orange Kiss-Me Cake

Here is another recipe I borrowed, last summer, from my Mother's collection

I have always loved her pretty handwriting. Here she has titled the dessert, "Orange Kiss Me Kate", marking over the "C" she had previously written.  I can just see her, sitting at the kitchen table, on the phone, with a sheet of notebook paper, taking down the recipe.  The recipe giver probably made sure to emphasize the "Kate", not "Cake".

When I decided I wanted to make it, I needed to clarify a couple of things. Mama wrote in her instructions, "Grease pan", but not what kind of pan.  When I asked her, she said she thinks she made it in a tube pan.  On further consideration, I was puzzled about the part of drizzling the topping on the warm cake.  Did you top the cake while it was still in the tube pan? What kept the topping from falling off when removed from the pan? Or should you take it out of the pan first? Immediately, or wait for. . .5 minutes? 10 minutes? 

I did a research about this cake and found out some interesting things. First of all the title is Orange Kiss-Me Cake (not Kate) and it was the winner of the 2nd Pillsbury Bake Off, in the year 1950.  And it was made as a sheet cake.  I saw some slight variations on the cake, but decided to stick with Mama's, with the exception of using butter rather than shortening.

Orange Kiss-Me Cake
6 oz. frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed, divided
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1 cup raisins
1/3 cup chopped pecans

1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp. cinnamon

Grease and flour a 13 x 9 inch baking pan and preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together the topping ingredients and set aside.

Combine 1/2 of the orange juice concentrate with remaining ingredients in a large bowl.  Beat at low speed of an electric mixer for about 30 seconds.  Beat at medium speed for 3 minutes.  Pour into prepared pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Drizzle remaining orange juice concentrate over the warm cake and sprinkle on the topping.


  1. YUM, love orange food! My own Mom use to make this with oranges pureed in the blender (those days were before a food processor), delicious!

  2. I love old-fashioned recipes! And I like the name kiss me kate! It makes it seem like there's a story behind it. The cake looks scrumptious!

  3. What a treasure you have in these old recipes. Thanks for sharing them and the stories behind them.

  4. I love the stained hand written recipe. What a great family treasure.

  5. Just inherited this recipe as well--from my mother-in-law. Can't wait to try it. Thanks for the history behind the cake. Wow, who knew it was a Bake-Off winner? Cool!

  6. I've made this lovely cake several times now and I put a thank you on my post Rocquie

  7. I've got my mother's copy which was originally a sheet of recipes that came in the bag of flour. It calls for walnuts, which I mention in case a reader does not have pecans. Both work well in this recipe.

  8. my mom had this same recipe... almost. All the ingredients are identical except the nut topping in her recipe called for 1/3 cup sugar, 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, and 1 tsp vinegar. Mixing them together makes a crumbly topping you sprinkle over the top while still warm after drizzling the OJ concentrate. The topping is fabulous!

    This was my favorite cake growing up - I would ask for it every birthday when younger until I discovered german chocolate cake. I still make this several times/year to take to work as a coffee cake for early morning meetings - it is gone in minutes.

  9. I'm going to make this tomorrow, only variation will be no raisins. I hate those things. I can't wait to try this.