I made this cake for my grandmother’s 86th birthday. She has a severe allergy to whey, which you find in most milk products, so this dense little chocolate cake has no milk, no butter, and does not even contain an egg. It’s also super-quick and very easy to prepare. I got the recipe from The Joy of Cooking (2006 edition, page 723), but I left out the salt, as always.
In a large bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used cake and pastry flour because I have tons lying around), 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder, and 1 teaspoon baking soda.
Bake about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack for ten minutes, before sliding a knife around the edges and turning the cake out onto the rack itself.
Let it cool completely before removing to a plate and icing. Frost with your favourite icing, or simply sprinkle confectioner’s sugar (icing sugar) over top using a sieve. I used a lemon slice squeezer (one of the many weird and wonderful gadgets in my parents’ kitchen) to create a fish shape on top of the cake.