My stepmother has been baking a lot. She’s always been an avid cook, but lately she’s been cranking out sweets. She even made my almond toffee for the first time, which was a big deal because until now it was my signature contribution to holiday get togethers. Our joke is that I can now shove it off to her, which is a good thing because my dad and stepbrothers are crazy for it. So I’m loving my stepmom’s baking as of late and am happy we’re swapping recipes. Pat’s Chocolate Pudding Cake is one of them.
This is a recipe Pat gave me the other day. She finds most cakes too dry, so I wasn’t surprised she recommended this combination of pudding and cake known for it’s ease and convenience. You pour all the ingredients in the pan in the order listed, bake for 40 minutes, and what you get is a rich hot fudge sauce (pudding) topped with a brownie-like cake.
I made this last night and it was a big hit even though I forgot to buy ice cream. Todd loved it and Fuzz and her friend (who were having a vegan dessert– another story) were fascinated with it and asked if we could try a vegan version. With no eggs in the recipe, I’m sure it would work. But here’s the recipe we used last night.
By the way, I think chocolate pudding cake might be the most difficult to dessert to photograph — or at least when you don’t have any ice cream in the house! I did my best to model this with some strawberries, but it’s a good reminder that the key to serving this is nice serving dishes, a good baking dish and ice cream. This is not one you turn out of the pan.
Pat’s Chocolate Pudding Cake
1 cup flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup milk
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup good quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups boiling hot water
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 inch square pan. I used metal, but glass is prettier.
In a large bowl, thoroughly mix together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and cocoa powder.
Combine the milk, butter, and vanilla in a large glass measuring cup. Pour over flour mixture and stir just until combined (don’t beat). Scrape batter into the pan.
Mix the remaining sugar, brown sugar and cocoa powder together and sprinkle over the top. Pour the boiling water over all. Set on center rack and bake 35-45 minutes.
— I don’t know where Pat got this particular recipe, but most are similar with varying amounts of sugar. Now that I’ve tried this one, I am going to compare it to a few others.
— I used Hershey’s cocoa powder. This is perfect for showcasing the best you have, but any brand will work.
— A little espresso powder added in with the dry ingredients would be a nice touch (I didn’t have any)
— The cake thickens as it sits. It is kind of soupy straight out of the oven, but by day two it’s thick and you can eat it cold or reheat it.
— Good vanilla ice cream is highly recommended!