Cream together the shortening and sugar. Add the eggs, baking powder, soda, salt, and spices. Next, add the water alternately with the flour. Stir in nuts, bananas, pineapple, and coconut.
Preheat oven to 325°F and grease 8 pint-size jars (use a brush dipped in melted shorting to grease jars). Fill each jar 1/2 full of batter and wipe the rims clean.
Bake on cookie sheet for 35 to 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, boil water in a pot. When it comes to a boil turn it off place in lids and rings and let sit until ready to use. When the cakes are done, remove the jars one at a time and place on a lid. Screw the lids on tightly and let sit until completely cool. the jars will seal as they cool.
If giving as a gift, wrap lid with pretty fabric and attach a card giving name of cake, date made, and expiration date. If not, for a gift, just write the info on the lid with a marker.
When ready to eat, if cakes do not come out easily, just run jar under tap water for a few seconds or heat in microwave with the lids removed for 2 seconds.
Store in refrigerator after open and eat within 2 days.
Recipezaar Editor Note: Additional information from Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service regarding canning safety for breads and cakes.
"These products are not recommended for canning. Choose recipes that you can freeze. In fact, most of these products are not really “canned.” The directions call for baking in the jar and then closing with a canning lid. Many recipes for quick breads and cakes are low acid and have the potential for supporting the growth of bacteria like Clostridium botulinum if it is present inside the closed jar. You will see these products made commercially; however, additives, preservatives and processing controls not available for home recipes are used. Canning jar manufacturers also don’t endorse baking in their canning jars.