Chocolate Cake

This recipe is especially suited to microwave cooking although conventional ovens will do a similar (although inferior) job.



  • 4 oz Sugar
  • 2 dessertspoons Cocoa Powder
  • teaspoon Salt
  • 6 oz strong Plain Wholemeal Flour
  • teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda
  • 3 floz Peanut Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Essence
  • 1 dessert spoon cider vinegar (or 1½ dessert spoon of malt vinegar)
  • 1/3 pint cold Water


  • 1 - 2 oz Margarine
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Essence
  • lb icing Sugar
  • 2 dessertspoons of sifted Cocoa Powder.


Grease and line (with grease proof paper) an 8 inch round microwave tray and set to one side.

Mix the sugar, cocoa, salt, flour and bicarbonate of soda in a mixing bowl. Make a well and add the oil and vanilla essence. In this recipe, the raising agent is the reaction between the sodium bicarbonate and the vinegar (the acetic acid in the vinegar displacing the weaker carbonic acid in the sodium bicarbonate to produce bubbles of carbon dioxide) - the raising effect being lost if it is used too early or given a chance to escape. Add the vinegar so that it goes into the oil and therefore does not immediately come into contact with the dry mixture. Pour in the cold water and fold in the mixture. Do not beat it as this will destroy the bubbles. Pour into the tray and microwave for 10 minutes at 450 Watts (around 7 or 8 minutes for 650 watts et cetera).

When cooked, let cool and then turn out onto a plate or board.

In a clean bowl, beat the margarine and add the essence. Sift the icing sugar and the cocoa powder and mix to an even consistency. Add water, small amounts at a time while beating, until a creamy consistency is achieved.

With a long knife, carefully slice the cake in two, horizontally (try introducing a piece of grease proof paper behind the knife as you do this as this will help you to separate the two pieces), placing the top piece down carefully (this recipe is not super-glued together with eggs so runs a higher risk of breaking). Spread the filling onto the lower piece and replace the top, making sure that the icing goes all of the way to the edge. If desired, more icing may be used to cover the cake completely.


  1. In the cake, substitute 50% pure orange juice 50% water for the water in the recipe and similarly substitute half of the vanilla essence with orange essence in both the cake and the icing - using orange instead of water in the icing. This recipe works best if there is a slight excess of acid but not too much so reduce the amount of vinegar slightly if you are going to add orange juice (the amounts will vary according to the strength of the vinegar and the acidity of the orange juice).
  2. Add a few drops of peppermint oil to the icing.
  3. Add chocolate drops to the icing that goes in the filling.
  4. Add some brandy or other strong alcohol to the filling.


This cake does not contain any animal products and therefore will store better than cakes that are made with animal products. The actual life of the cake will vary according to temperature and humidity but it must be remembered that this cake is not packed with the preservatives that are used in animal based cakes. I have never encountered any problems with shelf life as they have always been eaten before any problems could manifest themselves.

Serving suggestions:

Just eat. If this is not enough then you can add all sorts of things such as fresh fruit and so on.

Copyright 1984 - 2019 P.A.Grosse. All Rights Reserved