Ann Carter from Charleston, S.C., wrote in on behalf of her grandmother, who has lost a beloved recipe for what she called Panama Cake.

Her grandmother said she received the recipe from a fellow military family in the 1970s. She remembers that the cake was made with flour, sugar, shortening, raisins, nuts and spices, but did not call for any eggs.

David Hulteng from Crownsville, Md., saw Carter’s request and thought that a recipe he had for Poorman’s Cake sounded very much like what she was looking for. He said that he has had the recipe since the 1970s and has made it many times, receiving “rave reviews.”

He said that it came from a monthly publication by the Lutheran Brotherhood Insurance Co. An introduction to the recipe in that publication said, “If you’re fresh out of eggs and if your day’s schedule looks full, Poorman’s Cake is just the ticket for a hungry family.”

This is a very easy recipe and makes a large cake that is wholesome and tasty, with or without a cream frosting. A note at the end of the recipe says it keeps well for shipment overseas if made in a coffee can and not frosted.

Makes 12-16 servings Ingredients

2 cups sugar 1 cup shortening 2 cups water

2 cups raisins 2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves 1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt 3 cups flour 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine first four ingredients in a saucepan and bring almost to a boil. Simmer 15-20 minutes, until raisins are soft. Put aside until cool. Mix flour and spices and combine them with the thoroughly cooled raisin mixture (and walnuts if using). Pour into a greased and floured 13-by-9-by-2-inch inch pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until cake springs back at the touch.