Hot Milk Cake

This is a wonderful old-fashioned mid-western dairy cake using ingredients easily found in the average kitchen. Joan’s mother used to make this Hot Milk Cake for her when she was growing up in Brown Deer, Wisconsin. Joan thought the family recipe was lost forever, but it was recently recreated in the Choclatique test kitchen. I came into the kitchen one afternoon and there stood Joan—with flour on her nose (and everywhere else)—holding up the cake of her youth. I thought the cake was extra-yummy, too.

Makes 12 servings


2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (plus extra for the pan)

2 1/4 teaspoon baking powder

4 large eggs

2 cups granulated sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups milk

10 tablespoons butter or margarine (Oh, go ahead and splurge and use real butter)


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Grease and flour two 8 or 9-inch cake pans or a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan; set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and baking powder; set aside.

4. In a mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat eggs at high speed until thick and lemony colored for 10 minutes (Set a timer! This step is very important, do not under-beat the eggs or the cake will fail to rise). Gradually beat in sugar and vanilla until mixture is light and fluffy.

5. Gradually fold in flour mixture just until combined.

6. In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter until hot, but not boiling, stirring occasionally. Add hot milk mixture to cake batter, stirring until combined.

7. Pour cake batter into prepared baking pan.

8. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until cake tests done when a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

9. Cool on wire rack. Frost as desired.

ChefsNote: The success of the cake depends on beating the eggs until they are thick and lemon-colored. Under-beating will result in the cake failing to rise.