Cookook Reviews

Published on May 2nd, 2013 | by Jennifer Kaplan


Eli’s Super Cake Recipe from “The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage”


This recipe comes from The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage: True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat, a new anthology of personal essays, stories and recipes about “how we learn (and relearn) to eat, and how pivotal food is beyond the table.”

cassouletEli’s Super Cake

By Caroline M Grant

In kindergarten, my son Eli invented a cake. He dictated the recipe to me, and then shared it with our beloved school chef, Ric, who thought it had school lunch potential. The second graders did the math to scale the recipe up.

We follow Eli’s directions to the letter, only mixing the batter slightly longer than ten seconds, and baking it in a standard 9×13″ glass lasagna pan. We bake the cake for twenty-four minutes (until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out covered with moist crumbs; cover loosely with foil if cake starts to brown too much), rather than the prescribed twelve, but we do set the oven to 360 degrees. I recommend you do, too.

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 bag chocolate chips

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup honey

Cooking Directions

  1. Pour wet stuff in.
  2. Mix 10 seconds. (Mom: “Mix slightly longer than ten seconds”)
  3. Pour dry stuff in.
  4. Mix 10 seconds. (Mom: “Mix slightly longer than ten seconds”)
  5. Bake at 360 degrees for twenty-four minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out covered with moist crumbs; cover loosely with foil if cake starts to brown too much. (Eli: “Bake 12 minutes”)

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About the Author

is a former marketing consultant who decided, at the age of fifty, to turn her hand to creative non-fiction. Jennifer continues to write about sustainable food and wine, the intersection of food and marketing and food politics for and is the author of Greening Your Small Business (November 2009, Penguin Group (USA)). She was named one of The 16 Women You Must Follow on Twitter for Green Business. She has four kids, a dog, a hamster and an MBA - follow her on and .

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