Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line standard cupcake pans with 24 cupcake liners.
In the bowl of an electric mixer
fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the sugar and shortening. In a separate bowl, add the baking soda to the tomato soup
. Mix the flour, salt, baking powder, nutmeg, and cloves
in another bowl. Alternate adding the soup mixture and the flour mixture to the shortening
, starting and ending with the soup mixture. Add in the nuts
and raisins, if desired, and combine only until mixed. Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full. Bake until the cupcake springs back when touched, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pans to wire racks to cool completely before removing the cupcakes.
To assemble: Frost the cooled cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting.