Local Fruits Yield A Tasty Cake

Cocoa Apple-Sauce Cake

We found another tasty recipe in the Rochester Catholic Journal (Rochester NY) this one from December 7, 1917. By 1917, the Rochester Catholic Journal had become a women’s newspaper with articles on women’s sleeve styles in women’s clothing (all of page 2), an article about two women who were chased by a bear in Maine, and a delightful story of a Civil War romance. It was interesting to note that articles about the Great War, which the US had entered earlier that year, were scattered on pages three, six, and seven.

The recipe we chose was the Cocoa Apple-Sauce Cake. We chose this cake because we have homemade applesauce in our lard that was made from a variety of early Macintosh apples from our backyard. The tree that produced the apples is at least 80 years old.


The recipe called for sour cream. On a whim we decided to make our own sour cream with heavy cream and buttermilk. It came out well.

The cake was very easy to make; the frosting was a bit of a challenge, heating the sour cream and sugar to the soft ball stage- we might have heated it a bit over the 240oF. The frosting did not spread like normal frosting, it had to be placed by hand and gently manipulated into place. It was a messy endeavor that lead to sticky fingers.  The cake was very tasty; the orange frosting (which was a little gritty) was a nice compliment to the chocolate spice cake.

Time: about 27 hours (including making the sour cream)

Cost: about $8

Successful: Yes, very tasty despite the grittiness of the sugar in the frosting.

Accurate: Almost, used raw sugar instead of granulated sugar.

Sources:          New York Newspaper Project

Mother Earth News – Make Your Own Cream Cheese and Sour Cream


Author: newsiechef

Hi, Welcome to my exploration of newspaper recipes. My curiosity about newspaper recipes started during library science graduate school. During that time I was fortunate to have a job at a state library. One aspect of my job was to look at microfilm copies of historic newspapers to be sure all of the pages were in order and to check that no editions were missing from the microfilm before they headed off to get digitized. Looking at these historic newspapers made me realize that newspapers are a great source of lots of information, including tasty recipes. Hope that you too get a chance to try a recipe or two from historic newspapers.

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