About this recipe

This cake alone is responsible for half my weight problem. Chum is awesome; it goes great with coffee and a couple hundred relatives. P.S. You’ll never find this recipe anywhere else.


Into a bowl, break:

  • 6 extra-large eggs (saving 1 yolk for the top).

Then whisk in:

  • 1 cup sugar,
  • 1 cup vegetable oil,
  • 1 cup milk,
  • 1 cup raisins or currants (rinsed with hot water).


  • 1–1½ tsp. vanilla,
  • grated rind from 1 whole lemon,
  • juice from the above lemon,
  • 2 cups flour.

Stir everything together with a spatula or wooden spoon, and then add:

  • 6 tsp. baking powder,
  • 3 cups flour (1 cup at a time).

Turn onto flour board and knead lightly until dough no longer sticks to your fingers (just push it around a little). Add more flour as necessary (approx. 1 more cup).

Cut in two halves. Roll each into a long loaf and place on a cookie sheet sprayed with Pam.

Using fingers, spread egg yolk on top of loaves. Then make a couple of “Xs” with a knife and sprinkle ½ cup sugar over top. Bake at 350°F for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack.


  • Use convection if you have it.
  • You can spread a little butter on top.
  • Try adding ¾ cup toasted and chopped almonds with the raisins.
  • Each chum should be long enough to almost touch both ends of the pan.
  • Golden raisins are best. Also try craisins (cranberry-raisins); they’re good too.
  • Try orange instead of lemon, or orange with lemon. Try it all ways (too much won’t hurt).
    For something really great, slice chum and toast both sides in the oven (like poor man's biscotti). Then put in a cookie jar and tell people they can't have any.

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