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Celebrate Election Day with Cake

Why not? Our ancestors did for centuries.

According to the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), back in the 1800’s voters had to travel great distances to get to polling places. When they finally arrived they were welcomed with a slice of cake.

Back then Election Day Cake was a 10-pound (plus) fruitcake made with yeast and whole wheat flour. These days the same cake probably wouldn’t be considered a treat, though that hasn’t stopped the CIA from coming up with a similar recipe for this year’s election.

Their version (see recipe below) is a healthy bundt cake, which includes dried fruit and whole wheat. To sweeten it up you might consider serving it with whipped cream or ice cream.

Regardless of whether your candidate wins or loses, tomorrow is a day you can raise your fork to celebrate the freedom to vote… and eat cake.



1-1/2 cups sugar, divided

1/2 cup hot water

1-1/2 cups dried fruit (cranberries, golden raisins and blueberries)

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup milk

1 package (3/4 ounce) rapid-rise yeast

1-1/2 cups whole-wheat flour, sifted

2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground clove

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 pound (1 stick) softened unsalted butter, cut in cubes

3 eggs

1 cup powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine 1/2 cup sugar with hot water. Stir to dissolve. Stir in dried fruit. Set aside.

Combine water and milk; heat to 120 degrees.

Combine yeast with 1 cup whole-wheat flour; add milk mixture. Sprinkle remaining whole-wheat flour on top. Set aside for 30 minutes to rise slightly.

Lightly spray and flour an 8-inch tube pan.

Sift together remaining dry ingredients. Drain fruit mixture; reserving syrup for glaze.

Beat butter and remaining 1 cup sugar until light. Add eggs one at a time. With mixer on low, add the sponge (flour and yeast mixture); mix until fully combined. Add remaining sifted dry ingredients. Stir in drained fruit. Pour into pan, cover and set in a warm area to rise, up to 2 hours.

Bake 45 to 60 minutes.

To prepare glaze: Combine powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of reserved syrup from dried fruit. Stir until smooth.

Let cake cool in pan 5 minutes, and then remove from pan onto wire rack to cool completely.

Brush with reserved syrup, and top with glaze
Serve with ice cream or fresh whipped cream.

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Fruitcake Bars

Fruitcake Cookies

This entry was posted in Cakes and tagged , , , by Michele Cheplic. Bookmark the permalink.

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.