I read that it came out of The Depression when ingredients were scarce; it does not require eggs or milk and uses very little fat.
Wacky Woo is a much-used recipe in my house. There have been a few birthdays that have seen candles plunked down in a Wacky Woo Cake. Plunked. Because it is just that kind of cake.
I appreciate Wacky Woo for 3 main reasons:
1) It is mixed in the pan in which it is baked, no bowls needed (simple).
2) It is dense, not too airy, yet very moist (substantial).
3) It is 'lowish' in fat using only 3 tbsp of butter (sensible).
Wacky Woo is a great cake to really sink your teeth into. One that is firm enough for you to pick up, if you wanted. Substantial. In the sentiment of my father-in-law, it is a great 'Man's Cake'.
What is a Man's Cake? It is a close relative of a Man's Sandwich. A little known food group that my father-in-law, Gordon, used to refer to from time to time.
The first time I heard Gordon use the expression, he and my husband were heading out moose hunting. Gordon asked if I would make them some Man's Sandwiches. I was about 21 at the time and new to the kitchen and had no idea what he was talking about. I figured it must be something beefy. Seems reasonable, right? But what did I know?
I naively asked him what a Man's Sandwich was.
His reply was that it was made the same way as regular sandwich, but you don't cut them in half.
I laughed. He didn't.
I am pretty sure he was not pulling my leg, but I am open to the notion. And, in his defense, there is, in fact, something more filling about having one entire sandwich as opposed to sandwich parts. I don't know why. It may be all in the mind. But there it is.
But I don't make a sandwich without thinking of Gordon and contemplating whether I am going to keep it as a Man's Sandwich are turn it into a Non-Man's Sandwich!
The cover of the Ladies of the Good Shepherd of Anglican Parish of Mt. Pearl cookbook. A great cookbook!