Over the past weekend, I spent the bulk of my time at our community’s parish for the quarterly Parish Renewal Experience (PREX). As part of the organizing class, I helped in a number of ways: calling up both organizers and participants, preparing presentations, writing notes, running out to buy supplies from time to time, relieving the prayer-warriors in the downstairs chapel, and – to keep people’s spirits up despite the seemingly overwhelming amount of work – I baked.
This is what I refer to as a PREX Cake, a wee treat that I’ve named after the event. It is, in essence, a riff on two things: cinnamon-infused snickerdoodle cookies and a community-feeding traybake. It’s not too sweet, buttery, quite moreish, and is definitely a great way to feed a crowd.
The thing about baking for a crowd is that it helps to bring people together. People find comfort in the smell of fresh-baked treats. They pause from whatever it is they’re doing at the moment, take a good deep breath, sit down, and accept a bite of cake and a sip of coffee whilst chatting or joking with others. They bond over such a small experience and this helps pull everyone’s efforts in for bigger tasks.
It is, truly, amazing how even something as small as a piece of cake can be part of a community-building experience.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated white sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- additional 2 tablespoons sugar mixed with additional 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 2 eggs
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees/Gas Mark 4. Grease a large rectangular baking dish; set aside.
Whisk together the sugar, butter, milk, and eggs. Sift in the flour, baking powder, and cinnamon. Mix until you get a smooth-ish batter. Pour the batter into the prepared dish and sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar evenly over the top. Bake for 25 – 28 minutes.
Allow to cool for 25 minutes before cutting into small squares. Yields approximately 64 squares.
Incidentally, this also makes a great fund-raiser for community events. :)