Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Old Fashioned Butter Cake

There is comfort in the staple, the known and the tried and tested. Sure, the latest trends are exciting, new and fun, but every once in a while, the soul craves something comfortable and homely. This is interestingly true in every part of life – be it with food, family, friends, relationships – go back to the bottom line basics, and take a breather.

This cake is just that – comfort in a traditional bundt tin, basic ingredients – eggs, butter, sugar, flour and vanilla – nothing fancy or unoriginal but delicious by all means, warm and nourishing to the soul and mind (I won’t say body due to the amount of butter!). There is a lovely butter sauce that goes on top – it can’t get any classic-er than this!

This is one of those recipes that you don’t mess with. The only variation is adding some fresh fruit in the centre hole in the bundt – which in my rulebook is also considered messing with perfection.

The portion is… huge! But that’s the thing about the good old days – you fed a large family, your neighbours, your friends, your extended families. People dropped in unannounced for coffee, helped you without being asked to, and cake with coffee or tea was part of a perfectly normal day. If you’re like me, then this cake is the perfect way to go back in time in nostalgia.

The Recipe
Serves 10


  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups castor sugar
  • 1 cup butter, soft
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Butter Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 3 tbsp water


  • Heat the oven to 180C.
  • Butter and flour the bundt loaf tin.
  • Whisk the butter and sugar together until fluffy.
  • Then add the eggs, scraped vanilla bean pod and buttermilk.
  • Then add in the dry ingredients and combine to remove all lumps.
  • Pour into the tin and bake for 40 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and let the cake cool within the pan for 20 minutes.
  • While the cake cools, start making the sauce.
  • Butter Sauce:
  • Combine all the ingredients together in a small saucepan, including the scraped vanilla pod, and place on medium heat.
  • Stir until sugar dissolves, but don’t let the sauce come to a bubbling boil.
  • Once done, remove the vanilla pod.
  • Poke holes in the cake while it is in the Bundt tin and pour half the sauce over it and let it soak in for 5-10 minutes.
  • Once you invert the cake onto the serving dish, drizzle the remaining sauce over the cake.
  • Let cool completely before slicing.

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The recipes are tried and tested, some are adapted from various places, and a few are passed down; but every one of them comes straight from the heart.