Make Kate Smith’s Gala Cake Recipe

For several years I’ve been collecting recipes and cookbooks from the 1940s. It’s been interesting studying how food was produced and prepared and eaten. It’s amazing how some foods that were rationed then are running into similar situations today, i.e. eggs.

I’ll share bits of information periodically in a column called ‘What’s Cookin’?’

It may be a recipe or how agriculture evolved during the war, Victory Gardens and more.

This week is a recipe from a booklet I found at a thrift shop. The booklet is called ‘Kate Smith’s Favorite Recipes.’ I know it looks tatty, but considering it was written in 1939 (General Foods Corporation), I’m thrilled it has survived!

Each recipe features Swans Down Cake Flour & Calumet Baking Powder.

I’ve used both in my own baking over the years.

Here is some text from the pamphlet written by Kate Smith. Some readers will recognize her name for her rendition of ‘God Bless America’:

“I guess every woman has a hobby. Mine is baking. Ever since I’ve been a youngster, I’ve loved to putter in a big, homey kitchen with a good recipe at my below, and all the ‘fix-in’s’ for a lovely cake or hot bread sitting on the table before me.

And was I tickled when the makers of my two best baking friends – Swans Down Cake Flour & Calumet Baking Powder – asked me to go on the air with a new Kate Smith show and helped me prepare this book of my favorite recipes.”

I made ‘Kate Smith’s Gala Cake’ last week in my bundt cake pan (any ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ fans among us?)

It was tasty, although with even three eggs in it, was surprisingly dry. We don’t use frosting, so I dipped bites of cake in flavored keto-friendly yogurt (Kroger’s Carbmaster is our fave). Delicious!

If you choose to make this cake, let me know.

Here is a photo of mine with my Easter egg décor – my childhood purse and hat are among the eggs.



Kate Smith Gala Cake

2 c. sifted Swans Down Cake Flour

2 t. Calumet Baking Powder

2/3 c. butter

1 c. sugar

3 eggs, unbeaten

1/3 c. milk

1 t. vanilla

Sift flour once, measure, add baking powder and sift together three times.

Cream butter thoroughly; add sugar gradually and cream together until light and fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each.

Add flour, alternately with milk, a small amount at a time, beating after each addition until smooth. Add vanilla.

Bake in 2 greased 9-inch layer pans in moderate oven (375 degrees) 25-30 minutes.

Spread Almond Butter Cream Frosting (below) between layers and on top & sides of cake.

1 c. butter

4 c. sifted confectioners’ sugar

½ t. almond extract

Milk to make cream

Cream butter thoroughly. Add sugar gradually and cream until light and fluffy. Add almonds and flavoring and blend.

Add milk until of right consistency to spread.

Makes enough frosting to cover tops and sides of two 9-inch layers.

Sprinkle top of cake generously with slivers of toasted almonds.

One thought on “Make Kate Smith’s Gala Cake Recipe

Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: