Dear Old Bakers,
What did you use in the 1950s/1960s to flavor your cakes? I have heard many a person talk of the difference and cite an "almost anise-like flavor," especially in wedding cakes from these eras. However, no one seems to know what was the "secret ingredient". I would assume this was simply an anise flavored cake, but it seems improbable that this would be, as I associate anise cakes with an Italian influence, and the area I am from does not have much of a history of immigrants beyond those dropped from England in the 1600s. Also, the description is simply "anise-like", not full blown anise, and was used in everything from doll cakes to weddings.
I thought maybe a baking emulsion like Princess flavoring, or Creme bouquet, but none of those are mentioned as having an anise flavor. Was there some sort of emulsion or recipe that was popular at the time? Why did they all taste like anise? If there are any users out there with old bakers in your family, please ask around. Thanks!
P.S. I am posting this to several baking forums. If I get an answer on one, I will share on the others.
I am old, but I don't remember any baking from the 50's, too young. In the 60's, however, cakes were flavored pretty much the same as they are now, primarily vanilla, almond, lemon. I've never used anise in a cake, only cookies.
I wasn't into baking at all until 1980 and don't remember hearing anything about anise flavors. It is one of my least favorit flavors.
I'm a "old" baker but never used Anise in my baking & never was asked to use it. Taste to much like licorice and I don't like that flavor.
I love licorice, so I love anise too. I've only used it for cookies and it does need a light hand. I've never tried it in cake.