Here is a recipe for “Coffee or Moka Cake” from from a posthumous edition of Mrs. Beeton’s Cookery Book.

Printed recipe for Coffee or Moka Cake (Source: Internet Archive)

Transcribed text of the recipe:



1/2 lb. of butter,

1/2 lb. of brown sugar,

1/4 lb. of golden syrup,

1/2 lb. of currants,

1/2 lb. of sultanas [golden raisins],

1 1/2 lb. of flour,

1/2 oz. of baking powder,

2 eggs,

1/2 oz. [total] of nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon mixed,

[4 oz.] coffee,

a little milk

METHOD.— Sieve the baking-powder and spices with the flour into a pan, add the spices, sugar, and butter; rub well together, make a well in the centre, pour in the syrup, add about 1/4 pint of strong, cold coffee, break in the eggs, and beat well together; then mix in the other ingredients with a strong wooden spoon, using a little milk if not moist enough, mix in the fruit last, and then bake in a square cake-pan nicely papered.

TIME.— About 1 to 2 hours. SUFFICIENT for a cake about 1 3/4 lb.

For a real taste of what this baking experience would be like for someone in Isabella Beeton’s time (or soon after), enjoy this video from the Roedde House Museum in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, demonstrating this recipe in their restored, period-accurate 1893 kitchen.