A 1947 recipe for Bible Cake. it’s really more of a puzzle than a recipe. Each ingredient must be gleaned from Biblical verses. The recipe was published in the “Olio” Cookery Book in England. It’s easy to imagine a scene in one of those stark black and white English movies of the 1940’s. An English housewife, who always wears an apron, is trying to figure out the recipe for Bible Cake, printed in the Sunday newspaper. Her husband is away at war, and she is single-handedly keeping her household going. The Bible Cake recipe-puzzle serves as a comforting distraction.
I wondered about Bible Cakes. Was this idea invented during World War Two, or did it go back a-ways? Turns out I didn’t have to look very far. The answer is in the fine blog, Hushpuppy Nation, written by the food journalist, Rick McDaniel. The earliest Bible Cake recipes are to be found in cookery books published in England during the late 1700’s. The war between England and its American colonies didn’t dampen the enthusiasm that women had for Bible Cakes. None other than Dolly Madison was said to be a fan. Here is a link, with recipe, to the article about Scripture Cake in Hushpuppy Nation. http://www.hushpuppynation.com/scripture-cake/
And here, for your amusement, is the recipe for Bible Cake, published in 1947, in the Olio Cookery Book. Good luck with it!
Look up the references and work out what’s required. It won’t taste too good if you get it wrong!
1. 225g (1/2 lb.) Judges V, verse 25 (last clause)
2. 225g (1/2 lb.) Jeremiah VI, 20
3. 15ml (1 tbsp) I Samuel XIV, 25
4. 3 of Jeremiah XVII, II
5. 225g (1/2 lb.) I Samuel XXX, 12
6. 225g (1/2 lb.) Nahum III, 12 (chopped)
7. 50g (2 oz) Numbers XVII, 8 (blanched and chopped)
8. 450g (1 lb.) I Kings IV, 22
9. Season to taste with II Chronicles IX, 9
10. a pinch of Leviticus II, 13
11. 5ml (1 tsp) Amos IV, 5
12. 45ml (3 tbsp) Judges IV, 19
(Hint: ‘leaven’ means ‘baking powder’ and you may need to add some Exodus III, 14 to moisten the mixture)
Beat 1, 2, and 3 to a cream; add 4, one at a time, still beating; then 5, 6, and 7, and beat again. Add 8, 9, 10 and 11 having previously mixed them, and lastly 12. Bake in a slow oven for 1 ½ hours.Ps – If you want a recipe that comes with the answers, click here.