Grandma's Chocolate Cake

It was a weekend afternoon and getting to be that special time when I needed something chocolatey. This has been happening a lot lately. One of my favorite fixes is to walk to the corner store a block away and buy a delicious ice cream bar coated in rich, dark, fall-apart chocolate. (They also stock a mocha kind.) On a hot afternoon, one of these (plus maybe an iced tea) is pretty much the key to happiness. They only cost about $3.

However, it was also "starve week," which is what we call the last week before my monthly paycheck. This is the week when we usually have NO CASH to spare. I had already diligently composed my weekend shopping list and budgeted for each and every item on the list. I figured I'd need $49 to buy all our groceries for the week. I checked my wallet and found $50. All of it was from the family grocery fund (meaning none of it was technically mine). Should I blow three bucks of our grocery money on the short-term bliss of an ice cream bar? Or should I somehow contain myself and find chocolate closer to home?

Grammie's chocolate cake recipe to the rescue!

Grammie is my mother-in-law, and a gifted baker. She is known for her French bread, her foccaccia, her scones, and she recently shared this super-simple cake recipe. She calls it "Grandma's Chocolate Cake"... so I think it's from her grandmother. It is so easy and very satisfying. Basically, you just dump everything together and bake. Best of all, it calls for things that I already had on hand.

  • 1 stick of butter, cut up (can be soft or cold--I used cold)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 c white sugar
  • 1/2 c dry cocoa powder (I used Dutch process)
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups white flour, sifted
  • 1/2 cup whole milk combined with 1/2 cup hot water

  1. Put all ingredients in a food processor. Blend. Scrape the sides and continue blending until everything is combined (for me, this was when the chunks of cold butter disappeared).
  2. Pour into a buttered, floured tube pan or bundt pan.
  3. Bake in a 350˚ oven for 25 minutes. Test for doneness. Bake more if needed. (I did need about another 10 minutes.)
  4. Cool. If desired, top with confectioner's sugar.
  5. Serve. Excellent with whipped cream and fresh strawberries.

What do you do for your chocolate fix? I've heard that the microwave mini-cake in a mug is pretty quick and easy, for example!


ValleyWriter said...

I have made the microwave cake before - enh. It'll do in a pinch, but I'm sure it's not nearly as good as Grandma's cake! I usually keep some chocolate chips on hand at all times and just eat a few if I'm having a have-to-have-it-now craving.

baby cribs said...

I always wonder why foods that are cooked by elders taste so good!

"Prof. Kitty" said...

VW, having choc chips around is a must, you're right! I'm also finding a random spoonful of nutella can do the trick.

baby cribs--I like that, "elders"! There is definitely something special about recipes that are handed down. And they tend to be pretty easy and no-nonsense, too!