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Kentucky Jam Cake

Servings: 12

Studded with raisins and nuts, fragrant with nutmeg and cloves, the secret ingredient in this recipe is blackberry jam, which both flavors and colors the cake.


For the cake

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more for the pans
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the pans
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup blackberry jam
  • 1 Tbs. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1 cup toasted pecans or walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1 cup raisins

For the caramel frosting

  • 3⁄4 cup unsalted butter
  • 11⁄2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 1⁄4 cup whole milk
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • Fresh blackberries and mint leaves, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9-inch round cake pans, and line the bottom of each with a circle of parchment paper.

Make the cake

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, cloves, salt, nutmeg, and allspice. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat sugar and butter together on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in jam and vanilla until well combined; scrape down sides of the bowl. Add the buttermilk and flour mixture in two or three parts, ending with the flour mixture, then scrape down the sides and beat again briefly to combine. Fold in the pecans and raisins.

Divide batter evenly between prepared pans. Bake on the middle rack of the oven until cakes bounce back in the center when pressed, about 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool in pans for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Make the caramel frosting

In a medium pot, heat butter over medium heat until melted. Whisk in brown sugar and milk. Bring just to a boil, whisking often. Transfer to a large heatproof bowl, and set aside to let cool slightly. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar while beating with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes.

Assemble the cake

Place one cake layer on a large serving plate. Spread about half of the frosting on top, almost to the edges. Place the second cake layer on top, and spread with remaining frosting. Garnish with berries and mint.


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Reviews (1 review)

  • user-2461172 | 05/11/2022

    Fantastic cake. Not that hard to make, but looks and tastes stunning!!1

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