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Nov 4, 2010 10:03 AM

George Washington Cake?

My husband grew up in Germantown in the late 50's and early 60's. He has fond memories of George Washington Cake (it's kind of a spice cake chocolate icing or frosting, I'm not sure) sold in large squares.

The bakery closed years ago and yet to this day he talks about George Washington Cake.

Has anyone here heard of this and do you know where I can get my hands on some before his birthday (11/13)

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Try Haegele's Bakery - (215) 624-0117. It's near Frankford & Levick in the city. I remember when I was younger they used to sell it there. Can't hurt to call and ask.

    1. Haegele's Bakery use to have it - 4164 Barnett St, 215-624-0117. Good luck!

      6 Replies
      1. re: Bigley9

        Thank you both! I will check them out

        1. re: cgarner

          That's funny . . . Looks like Bigley & I were channeling the same food memory at the same time! (Or perhaps, Haegele's is the only remaining bakery of that generation?)

          Hope they still have it!

          1. re: gaffk

            THEY HAVE IT!! they still sell the "big squares" in the store and I just ordered a half sheet for $24 (not bad, you pay that for a half sheet of "grocery store" birthday cake!)

            You all are wonderful! Thank you so much!!!

            1. re: cgarner

              Terrific! Might have to go get some!

              1. re: cgarner

                Great . . .hope your husband enjoys his birthday surprise!

          2. Having also been in the area for school (GFS) in the same era, what was the bakery? I remember one on Gnt. Ave. near Chelten. Breadncakes? Wasn't Hanscom's a bakery as well?

            As for the cake in question, I wonder if it shouldn't be renamed Hercules Cake (considering what we know now.)

            4 Replies
            1. re: Chefpaulo

              CP Hanscoms was a bakery... they had a location in Abington also. They sold in some grocery stores but my Nan insisted we go to the store. she existed on their sticky buns and maxwell house coffee with milk and sugar... (literally there were days where that was all she ate)

              The bakery that my husband remembers was Maryanne's and he says they have a store down in Sea Isle City now.

              1. re: cgarner

                Our birthday cakes always came from Hanscoms

              2. re: Chefpaulo

                Well, having also gone to school there, I can tell you that whatever that was, it was long gone by the 80s.
                Very GFS comment, though, about "Hercules Cake."

                1. re: Bob Loblaw

                  Can't help it, Bob. I was a lifer. I still go around whistling "Jerusalem."

              3. Thank you all again for the rec. Haegele's Bakery is something out of a dream... the cake... well a little drier than I had expected, but very tasty.
                (Is it supposed to be crumbly like that?)

                5 Replies
                1. re: cgarner

                  As I recall, it was kind of crumbly. Was your husband happy with his surprise?

                  1. re: gaffk

                    he was so thrilled! even more so that I also grabbed a bag of Springerle.... which were a little moist and cakey in the middle. We can get them at Flecks in the Q-town farmers market, but the ones they sell there are hard as rocks!

                    For dinner I made his favorte Steak Oscar, we shared a bottle of Duckhorn Merlot and had the cake for dessert, a perfect day

                    1. re: cgarner

                      Glad to hear it!

                      And Duckhorn merlot? I knew you had good taste ;)

                      1. re: cgarner

                        Great! Glad it was a good celebration!

                    2. re: cgarner

                      My husband and I, including 2 sons reminisce about the old bakery's in Philly that made awesome Washington Cake, moist, great spicy flavor and delicious chocolate icing. One of them was ARthur's Bakery in a shopping center off of Academy Road. Unfortunatley they are no longer there. A friend found Washington cake at Haegele's Bakery and brought me a chunk of it. Although the flavor was there, it was very crumbly and very dry. I wouldn't buy it there and ended up throwing it in the trash. Wish I could find the recipe to bake it myself. Don't know why Haegele's doesn't make it moist, rather than dry and crumbly...they got the flavor right but way too dry.

                    3. I also remember this cake! We used to get it from a "Unity Frankford" corner grocery store at 11th and Cambria Street in North Philly. Would love to have the recipe??? I live far away in Bucks County.
                      Still have memories of that delicious Chocolate Spice cake, Found a close version in Huntingdon Valley - but not nearly as good.
                      We moved from that old neighborhood in 1958!