This fabulous cake calls for a rather unique technique that results in a texture somewhere between “sponge” and “pound. “
Beat eggs and sugar together. Combine dry ingredients and add to egg mixture. Bring milk and butter just to a boil and pour over cake mixture. Beat well. Add flavoring as desired. Pour into a 9- by 13-inch greased and floured pan and bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 to 40 minutes or until cake tests done. Frost with Maple Butternut Frosting.
Maple Butternut Frosting
Cook syrup until it spins a long thread (238 degrees F to 240 degrees F). (When heating syrup, be careful that it doesn’t boil over; if it does, add a bit of butter, cream, or a piece of salt pork to bring it down.) Pour hot syrup over beaten egg whites, and beat until frosting has lost its gloss. Spread over cake. Top with butternuts. Kate prefers Grade B syrup for her maple cookery; she finds it gives more flavor.