Recently many food bloggers have been taking part in the live below the line challenge, attempting to feed themselves and their families for £1 a day per person for 5 days in order to raise awareness of the millions of people around the world who do live in poverty.

Luckily I’ve never had to cope with real hardship.  I’m not extravagant and I don’t spend a lot of money on food, but neither do I scrimp and save.   If I fancy splashing out on expensive ingredients for dinner, I do, but only occasionally and most of the food I feature here is everyday food.

When it comes to cakes, they can be expensive to buy and it is definitely a lot more economical to make a cake than to buy one.   The basic ingredients of flour and sugar can be bought very cheaply, especially if you are willing to use the supermarkets’ own brands, which I often do.  So, when I saw that the We Should Cocoa Challenge for this month was to make a chocolate cake costing one pound or less, I decided to give it  a go.

As I felt eggs would be the most expensive part of a typical cake, I searched for an egg-free chocolate cake recipe and found the recipe for this one on BBC Good Food.  I admit I was sceptical about whether the recipe I’d found would work.  Using lots of water in a cake just seemed a bit wierd, but I decided to trust the reviews.  After all, I’m not an expert baker anyway.

It is actually a good cake, not too sweet, with a light, moist and crumbly texture and I would happily make it again.   When I worked out the costings, it came in at just 90p. I’ve mentioned before that I like cake much more than I like icing and you can see I haven’t decorated it, but if I had, I would probably have struggled to keep it under the £1 mark, unless I’d just dusted it with icing sugar. I could also have sliced it in half horizontally and used the extra 10p on a layer of jam.

Ingredients – Serves 10-12

85g butter – 26p

2 tbsp golden syrup – 7p

1 tbsp vanilla extract - 14p

300g self-raising flour – 11p

25g cocoa powder – 29p

1tsp bicarbonate of soda – 3p

How to Make Eggless Chocolate Cake

1. Put the butter, golden syrup and vanilla in a heatproof jug.  Pour in 300ml of water and stir until the butter has melted and the syrup has dissolved.

2. Put the flour,cocoa powder and bicarbonate of soda into another bowl and pour in the liquid mixture. Stir until it is smooth and there are no dry bits left.

3. Pour the mixture into a 20cm greased cake tin.

4. Bake in the oven at 160C (140C fan) for 45-55 minutes.

5. Let the cake cool in the tin for a few minutes and then turn it out onto a wire rack.


We Should Cocoa is hosted by Choclette at Chocolate Log Blog. I am also linking to Bake of the week at Casa Costello.


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