Sunday, April 13, 2014

Depression Cake

This cake is dairy free, and if you love chocolate, well, you may just love this recipe! I have been making this cake for more years than I care to admit.  The recipe was given to me by a friend who called it Depression Cake.  That reference, of course, being to the Depression Era here in the United States which lasted (roughly) from 1930 to about the mid-1940's, when things like milk, butter and eggs were costly.  Here's the cake in its 'bare bones' state, so you can see it's chocolatey goodness:

chocolate cake, cocoa powder, cupcakes
As for toppings I like simple, I like easy, and I like natural.  On this particular day I whipped some cream using my Kitchen Aid mixer and piped it on with a Wilton #22 star tip, added some sprinkles and we were ready to celebrate Takeo's birthday!

chocolate cake, cocoa powder, cupcakes

Here's the recipe:
Depression Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Assemble and have ready:
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Mix dry ingredients.  Make 3 holes for oil, vinegar, and vanilla extract.  Pour cold water over all.  Beat well.  Spoon into cupcake paper-lined tins. Bake about 25 minutes; check starting at 15 minutes.  Makes 1 dozen cupcakes.

For a 9x13 cake, bake about 45 minutes, checking at about 30 minutes.

Substitutions: The only ingredient I have ever substituted is honey for the sugar, which is usually half the amount of honey as sugar.  When I do use sugar, I use turbinado.  I'm thinking those on a gluten free diet can substitute another kind of flour, but I have not tried this myself.


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