We were talking about this blog, really, and how it is possible to feed your family if you’re relying completely on benefits. It’s not easy and it takes time, effort, planning and innovation (as you already know). In the course of that conversation, George made reference to earlier generations and how poverty is not a new invention. He’s right, of course, and the chat we had reminded me of a recipe I came across (and tweaked!) a few years ago.
I’d invited an old school friend home for coffee one particular morning. We agreed a time and date three weeks in advance, and the night before she was due to rock up, I was in a lather. I had no money (which isn’t unusual) nor did I have anything to serve with the coffee. Thankfully, I had coffee – and more types of tea than you could shake a stick at – were you in the mood to shake a stick!
I couldn’t cancel – I’d been looking forward to seeing my friend for ages, and I was too embarrassed to admit the dire straits I was in. It was then I discovered crazy cake. The crazy thing about this cake is that it is so cheap to prepare! There are no eggs, no butter, very little sugar and a little bit of magic in the mixture. Apparently, the recipe was produced during WWII in order to stretch rations and still enjoy something sweet.
200g of Plain Flour
150g of Sugar
1 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
2 Tablespoons of Cocoa
1 Tablespoon of White Vinegar
1 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
5 Tablespoons of Oil
250mls of Cold Water
Preheat the oven to 180.
Sieve all the dry ingredients straight into an ungreased nine-inch cake tin.
Poke three holes in the mixture.
In the first hole, add the vinegar.
In the second, pour the vanilla extract.
Into the final hole, pour the oil.
Pour the water into the pan and mix it all together.
Pop it in the oven and cook for 30 minutes.
The cake is done when a skewer comes out clean.