A&P Spanish Bar

A&P Spanish Bar offers nostalgia in the form of a delicious pleasure. This Jane Parker ripoff has all of the flavors of the original 20th-century snack. A raisin-studded cake is mildly flavored and covered with a thick cream cheese icing. You’ll find a method (or an excuse) to devour a slice at any time of day or night.A&P was one of the companies that fundamentally altered how people bought for food.

When you walk inside an A&P, you’re likely to discover vegetables, meats, baked goods, and tea all in one place, all self-serve. Going to the grocer was an engaging affair when A&P first opened in 1859, as you had to ask the shopkeeper for specific things to be weighed and wrapped. A&P revolutionized the game by prepackaging everything, allowing customers to simply grab an item and place it in their cart.

By the 1930s, it had grown to become the nation’s largest chain grocery store, offering low prices that smaller grocers just couldn’t compete with, especially during the Great Depression. Their technique was to hire few people and have in-store brands, which allowed them to keep pricing low — if you wanted coffee, you’d get Eight o’clock, and if you wanted a sweet treat, you’d get Anne Paige or Jane Parker goodies.

By the mid-century, this had become an issue for the corporation, especially since the increase in commercial and publicly displayed products led to customers expecting well-known national brands. The A&P strategy with few staff and store-brand products would eventually lead to an outmoded business by the 1970s, and it would close its final stores by 2015.Yet, if you ask anyone who has shopped there, there is something nostalgic about this establishment.

People would be reliving and thinking about Jane Parker desserts. Jane Parker, one of A&P’s in-house bakery brands, was known for cupcakes, cookies, fruitcakes, and snack cakes, including the Spanish Bar. A&P’s Spanish Bar became popular, particularly during the 1940s. This cake utilized very few eggs and relied on inexpensive dried spices to flavor it. Raisins were the original mix-in, but as the cake’s popularity grew, chopped walnuts were added to the batter as well.

This A&P Spanish Bar is comparable to the original version, with the addition of spices and raisins. A silky cream cheese icing holds this double-decker cake together. To begin, bring water to a boil and soak the raisins for 10 minutes. This process swells up the raisins and ultimately adds moisture to the cake. While the raisins are cooling, combine the dry ingredients.

To the batter, add the raisins, oil, and egg. It will appear lumpy at first, but if you trust the process and keep stirring, it will level out. Bake until the cake is brown around the edges and a toothpick inserted comes out with a few moist, not wet, crumbs in an 8-inch buttered pan.The frosting is a simple but classic blend of cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and a sprinkle of salt.

When the cake has cooled, carefully remove it from the pan and cut it in two. Spread some frosting on top of one cake layer, then top with the second layer and the remaining icing.You’ll have a dessert from the past once it’s been sliced and served. The raisins and spices give the cake a warm Christmas feel, while the cream cheese icing makes it suitable for any time of year.

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