In Which One Bakes for the Community…

Cinnamon Cake

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.  🙂