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Chocolate Chip Nut Cake

Joanne Kesten Weinberg
chocolate chip nut cake
Photo: Joanne Kesten Weinberg
Photo: Joanne Kesten Weinberg

My father, a CPA, brought home this Bundt cake recipe from his secretary, Dorothy, in the late 1960s. "Dorothy's cake" was typewritten on carbon paper, one of the first “from scratch” recipes I attempted as a pre-teen. It often required a short walk to the local grocery store for the ingredients, purchased with money saved from my allowance; I never loved chores as much as when I could splurge for baking ingredients! My favorite aspect of the recipe was incorporating the vanilla into the sour cream before adding the second batch of flour.

My husband – not a baker – once decided to surprise me with his “famous chocolate chip nut cake,” having extracted the recipe from his father-in-law - who was also his best friend.

If a recipe ever deserved to be dubbed a "family classic," this cake is it. Moist, with a bit of crumbling on the fork, it's a perennial family favorite - and as Jewish cooking expert Tina Wasserman explains, cooking with children can help connect them to our Jewish past and future. Sounds like a great reason to bake a cake!

2 sticks butter (or margarine), melted
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups flour, divided into 2 cups
1 pint sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 teaspoons baking powder
10 oz. chocolate chips
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
enough extra flour to coat chips and nuts
shake confectioner's sugar
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. With an electric mixer, gradually beat together melted butter and sugar until golden. Add eggs and salt; beat thoroughly. Add two cups of flour and beat until flour is incorporated.
  • Combine sour cream and vanilla in a bowl; then add to mixture and beat until golden. Add additional two cups of flour along with baking soda and baking powder. Beat thoroughly.
  • Fold in chocolate chips and walnuts until just incorporated. Pour batter into an ungreased tube or Bundt pan.
  • Bake for 60 minutes or until done. Let cool. Before serving, dust with confectioner's sugar.

Joanne Kesten Weinberg is an art historian and researcher who loves to bake. She is an avid cookbook collector, with over 1,000 volumes in her home library. Her husband, two sons, students, family, and friends are often the recipients of her baked goods.