You'll flip over this super easy, healthy cake that frosts itself. The video below shows that it's a perfect, fast comfort-food dessert for after school or a weeknight supper. My beloved mother-in-law taught me the basics. She used nutritious cocoa powder and no eggs or weird chemicals to make this cake. I added a Cook for Good twist by using white whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour and coconut spread instead of butter. It's one of my Taster's favorites.
See the magic of how it makes its own frosting on this My Carolina Today video. Don't you love how host Valonda Calloway flips for it? It's one of the 60 great recipes in my newest book Fifty Weeks of Green.
Active time: 15 minutes. Total time: 50 minutes, plus at least 2 hours chilling time for the coconut milk. Yield: 8 servings. Dairy-free and vegan.
- 1 can full-fat Thai Kitchen coconut milk
- 1 cup white whole whole wheat or all-purpose flour (120 grams)
- 3/4 cup sugar (150 grams)
- 2 tablespoons Hershey's cocoa(10 grams)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3/4 cup hot water
- 3/4 cup brown sugar (163 grams)
- 1 tablespoon Hershey's cocoa (5 grams)
- Refrigerate can of coconut milk for at least two hours, so the coconut cream will rise to the top and harden.
- Heat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.
- Open can of coconut milk. Spoon out two tablespoons of the hardened white coconut cream on the top and put in a microwave-safe container (I use a Pyrex measuring cup). Melt the coconut cream in the microwave until just barely liquid, about 30 seconds on high and pour onto flour mixture. Push a spoon through to the remaining coconut cream in the can to the liquid underneath, then pour 1/2 cup coconut liquid into a measuring cup (preferably the same one you used to melt coconut cream). Add coconut liquid and vanilla to flour mixture and stir until smooth, using a spatula to include any dry parts on the bottom of the bowl. More stirring is not better, though: you don't want to develop the gluten network and make the cake tough. Pour batter into greased cake pan.
- Heat water in a microwave on high until hot to the touch, about one minute. (Yes, use that same Pyrex measuring cup.) Put hot water, brown sugar, and remaining cocoa into batter bowl. Swish to combine and pick up remaining batter. Gently pour hot liquid over cake batter. Bake for 35 minutes or until top is medium brown and chocolate sauce bubbles around the edges.
- Let cake firm up for about 10 minutes, then serve by cutting into pieces, flipping onto the serving plate, and topping with any chocolate sauce left in the pan. Keep any extra covered at room temperature for about three days. To serve, cut, flip, top, and then microwave until topping goes molten again, about 30 seconds on high per piece.
- Adding more cocoa makes this cake bitter, not better.
- This recipe mixes Depression-era thrifty and simplicity with modern ingredients and diets. I love using refrigerated coconut milk in place of butter and cows' milk.
- Cocoa may be good for you, according to the National Institutes of Health, especially the minimally processed type. Last year, a meta-study from Harvard found that cocoa may lower many cardiovascular risk factors, including cholesterol and blood pressure. A piece of this warm, gooey cocoa cake certainly elevates my mood and makes my Taster happy!