(In addition to serving cake on New Year’s day, some cultures hide a special trinket or coin inside the cake and whomever finds it will be the luckiest in the New Year.)
1 cup butter
2 cups white sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup warm milk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup blanched slivered almonds
2 tablespoons sugar
Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 10″ round cake pan. In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light. Stir in the flour and mix until crumbly. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg. Combine the baking powder and milk, add to the egg mixture, and mix well. Then combine the lemon juice and baking soda, stir into the batter. Pour into the prepared cake pan.
Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove and sprinkle the nuts and sugar over the cake, then return it to the oven for 20 to 30 additional minutes, until cake springs back to the touch. Gently cut a small hole in the cake and place a quarter in the hole. Try to cover the hole with sugar. Cool cake on a rack for 10 minutes before inverting onto a plate.