Saturday, August 31, 2013

How to Make a Watermelon Cake, 1896

Watermelon (c. 1855)

         "1/2 cup butter.
          1 cup sugar.
          1/2 cup sweet milk.
          3 whites of eggs.
          2 cups flour.
          1 teaspoon cream tartar.
          1/2 teaspoon soda.
          Flavor with lemon.

Take a little more than 1/3 of the mixture and to it add 1 teaspoon liquid cochineal and 1/2 cup raisins. Put the red part in the center and bake. Cover with a frosting colored green with spinach."
Smiley's Cook Book (1896)
This is perfect for a child's birthday party. The kids will be so busy picking out the raisins they won't notice the cake is made of spinach goo and liquified insects.


  1. To be fair, cochineal is still widely used as a food coloring, and it's probably more appealing than, say, Red #40, a delicious petroleum product.

  2. Cochineal is also found in many lipsticks. Give mom a kiss after you finish your cake, dear.