[Photograph: Alexandra Penfold]

In my continuing search for classic American sweets I came across Cottage Pudding. As one look reveals, it is neither a cottage nor a pudding. What is it you ask? A simple cake topped with sauce. Lovely boozy sauce.

Cottage pudding is a very simple, dense cake that dates back to the late 19th century. Like other puddings of the era that were pudding-like (think: Christmas plum pudding) this not-so-puddingish cake was typically served with a vanilla or liquor based sauce. If you're used to boxed cakes, this cake might seem a little dry—but that's what the sauce is for! Prick the top of the cake to allow the sauce to seep in. If brandy sauce isn't your bag, feel free to top this cake with your favorite frosting or chocolate sauce.

Get the Recipe

Cottage Pudding »

Got a favorite classic American dessert recipe you'd like to see featured here? Email us with the subject: "American Classics."

About the author: Alexandra Penfold is mild-mannered children's book editor by day, food ninja by night. Never one to skip dessert she's the Brownie half of Blondie & Brownie and a Midtown Lunch contributor. You can follow her on Twitter at @blondiebrownie.

Comments can take up to a minute to appear - please be patient!

Previewing your comment: