Good Cream Cake Recipe

Vintage Cream Cake RecipeĀ 

Confession time. I have a slightly weird hobby.

No I don’t race ferrets and I’m not an “Extreme Ironing” competitor, although I do fancy myself achieving quite well in a “mooing competition.”

I collect old recipes.

Some of them are quite smelly in that very well used, very old book kind of way.

I hide them around my house, some in the office and some in the laundry and I dream about a day where I will get to cook some of the weird and wonderful recipes from within their musty pages.

Some of the recipes are in magazines that are actually quite beautiful, but some of them are definitely untidy and ugly.

But they all contain a fairly interesting sense of history and story when it comes to the food we eat and the way we cook it.

I love trawling through op shops to find these treasures and one of my more interesting recent finds was a completely useless book on food and architecture. It sounds so promising right? Well it was not.

When I first started out on my blogging journey I was keen to share some of the more vintage style recipes that have been given to me or left to me and this year I am getting back to basics by finally publishing a few more of my favourites.

Todays comes courtesy of a post-it notes sized piece of old, loose paper with a handwritten family recipe on it.

“Good Cream Cake .”

It comes with very few instructions, nor does it have an explanation as to why it is called a good cream cake. But it must have been precious to have been kept for so long.

A little bit of research though suggests that this is a good solid cake for covering with fresh cream and fruit.

It is definitely not a light and airy sponge, but a buttery cake with a lovely crumb. I am guessing that it was meant to look a little something like this.

Cinnamon apple cream cake recipe (1940)


I have included the original instructions, as well as my own notes from making it. I iced it and then added jam and cream like a sponge, but I think it could so with something more sturdy than that.

Cream Cake Recipe

1 small cup of sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons butter, vanilla essence

1/2 cup of milk

1 1/2 cups of flour

1 teaspoon of cream of tartar

1/2 teaspoon of soda

Bake in a brisk oven from 3/4 to 1 hour.


  • I discovered very quickly that one (1) teaspoon baking powder is equivalent to 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar, so I just used 2 teaspoons of baking powder in place of the tartar/ soda.
  • There were absolutely no instructions apart from the “bake briskly for 3/4 to 1 hour” which suggests it should be cooked somewhere between 200 degrees celsius and 230. I thought this sounded way to hot so I lowered it to the standard 180 cake baking temperature. Feel free to tell me I am wrong! Perhaps I would have got a slightly higher rise out of my cake if it was in hotter?
  • I also dropped the time to 40 minutes and then took the cake out. It was cooked beautifully on the inside and was starting to get a little dark on the top.
  • I ended up with a fairly dense cake that tasted delicious!
  • I whisked the eggs and added the dry ingredients together first. Then in with the milk, eggs and butter. Stir until smooth.
  • I made a really nice icing out of icing sugar, the juice of a couple of frozen berries and raspberry tea. The tea gave it a lovely pink flavour and also a lovely, mild, fragrant flavour.

This is what I ended up with.

Cream Cake Recipe

This was a very simple cake to make but it was also very tasty. I can imagine it would tolerate lemon or orange rind and a zesty cream cheese icing quite well. I feel like it is definitely asking for fruit of some sort on top.

So, do you know what a “cream cake” is? Can you provide me any more information on what I should do with this time honoured, simple and effective recipe?

Do you have a favourite vintage (old) recipe that has been passed down from one generation to the next?

Happy eating.

Dani xx


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4 thoughts on “Good Cream Cake Recipe

  1. Dani add a little butter (1/2 tblspn) to your icing and it will thicken that little bit more. Just beat it in cold with a spoon.

  2. How cute are you? Seriously! I love a good, old cookbook. My grandmother’s recipes are my total fave. I’ve been known to swap ingredients heaps but it’s always good to experiment.

  3. That looks sooo yummy! I’m not the cook in the family – I defer to Al (although desserts and cakes – those I do like) and yes, we have a few of his grandmother’s staples (complete with original handwriting, stuck in a book). xx

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