Does tradition make things taste better? Not sure with this cake as it’s so delicious but it is very much tied into childhood memories. It was a cake my mum would make for birthday parties and special occasions and it wouldn’t last long at all. It’s really the family cake.
My mum got the recipe from our Aunt Do, who is married to our Uncle Bob. They’ve been married for over 65 years and they are literally the sweetest people you would ever meet. Do got the recipe decades ago, from a neighbour she thinks. A recipe from the mists of time! My sister did say she saw something similar in an old Fanny Farmer book called Mix in the Pan cake. Could be a variation on that.
This is a very easy cake to make and the cake itself is vegan and the icing could be made vegan without too much trouble.
Preheat the oven at 350F/175C.
In a large mixing bowl sift together 3 cups flour, 2 cups sugar, 2/3 cups baking cocoa, 2tsp baking soda and 1 tsp of salt. Flatten the mixture and put 3 large holes in it.
In one hole pour 2 tsp of vanilla, in another put another 2 tsp vanilla, then spread between the three holes a cup of vegetable oil. The oil might not fit into the three holes and it will spread out, that’s ok. With a spoon or spatula mix it all together.
Next add 2 cups of cold water gradually while mixing until smooth.
In a lightly greased 13″ x 9″ pan, pour the cake batter into the pan and bake for about 30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
While the cake is baking make the frosting. In a small saucepan add 2 1/2 tablespoons flour and 1/2 cup milk. Cook on medium low heat until the flour and milk thickens. Whisk continually while it cooks.
Let it cool. In a medium bowl add 1/2 cup of granulated sugar, 1/2 cup of butter and 1 tsp of vanilla. Add the cooled flour milk mixture. If you want this vegan use vegetable shortening and a milk alternative like almond milk.
Using an electric hand mixer, beat on med high until it is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Add any food colouring and beat for another minute or so. Spread on the cake.
I tried, quickly, to do a shamrock as a design. If you squint you might be able to see it!
This is so good that it will definitely continue as a family tradition. I probably should ask Aunt Do if she has any other recipes to pass down! 😉