This recipe by Leslie Witham won a prize in a holiday recipe contest Earthbound held in 2004.
"My grandmother's best friend grew apples, so she used this recipe many times to make good use of the fresh fruit she was given," Leslie says. "This was (and still is) one of my mother's favorite cakes. The recipe has since been handed down to me, and now I bake them for my grandmother upon request. This recipe has come full-circle through 3 generations, evoking wonderful memories every time we make it."
We hope you enjoy this cake as much as we have here at Earthbound!
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Heavily butter and flour a 9x13-inch baking pan and set aside.
In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. Set aside.
In another larger bowl, mix the eggs with the apples, sugar, oil, and vanilla. Stir in the raisins and nuts, if using.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Bake until the cake is set and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 50 to 60 minutes. Remove cake from the oven and set pan on a wire rack.
To make the icing, place the butter, sugar, and milk in a small pan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Let the icing cool for 5 minutes, then add the vanilla.
Spread the icing over the warm cake. Cut into squares to serve.