Saturday, 24 May 2014

We Should Cocoa: £1 Chocolate Cake

This month's We Should Cocoa is hosted by Choclette at the Chocolate Log Blog who is taking Live Below the Line as inspiration for this month's challenge.  Last month's Easter round up can be found here. You can read all about We Should Cocoa, how to enter and take a look at the previous challenges and round ups on Choclette's blog here

People, every day, struggle financially to put food on the table. Live Below the Line is a campaign that raises awareness to the fact that over a billion people around the globe live on, sometimes a lot, less than £1 per day for food.

What does a chocolate cake have to do with this? Choclette challenged us raise awareness and to try and make a chocolate cake for £1.


As someone who has had an ongoing love affair with butter, free range eggs and sugar, it wasn't easy. But in times of trouble, I know where to turn. 

Oh yes. Return of the beast.

I based my recipe on the Economical Chocolate Cake.

(and cost breakdown)
140gr self raising flour (4.2p)
30gr cocoa powder (24p)
85gr margarine (15.1p)
85gr sugar (8.4p)
150ml milk (10.4p)

Total - 62.1p

1, Preheat your oven to 180o/c and line a seven inch cake tin.
2, Sift the flour and cocoa powder together and then stir with a whisk to fully combine
3, Rub in the margarine, much like you would when making pastry, until it it fully combined and there are no lumps.
4, Stir in the sugar and then add in enough milk to give it a soft, cake batter-esque, consistency.
5, Decant into your cake tin and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until it is completely cooked.
6, Turn out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool completely.

The method of this cake surprised me a little but the end rest surprised me even more.  It was so good.  Even with cheap flour and margarine, it tasted brilliant. 

Hang on, but isn't that a ganache topping? Yes. And it still comes in at under a £1

100gr bar of dark chocolate
(Aldi and Sainsburys both do bars that are or are around 30p)
50ml plain tap water

1, Break the chocolate into pieces and add them into a small saucepan with the water.
2, Very gently, over a low heat, melt them together, stirring continuously.
3, Once all melted and liquify, remove from the heat and leave to cool until it has a thick spreading consistency.  When this starts to cool, it does so very quickly and goes quite solid so slap it on your cooled cake as soon as you think it will hold.  Leave to set completely (will literally only take a couple more minutes) before slicing and serving. 


  1. Oh well done Hannah, you did a super cheap cake and were rewarded with the luxury of a real chocolate topping. I'm a butter kind of girl myself too, but on the odd occasion I've used them, I do find marg and oil produce super light cakes. It's been really interesting seeing the different cost in ingredients depending on what people buy and where they shop. Thanks for taking part.

  2. Well, I would never have guessed this was a less-than-£1 cake; it looks scrumptious. I can't imagine how difficult life must be for those living on £1 a day food budgets, and feel incredibly grateful/thankful to not be one of them. xxx

  3. Oh I have that book, it was the 'Bible' at home when I was growing up. I think you made a better job of your water ganache than I did. Mine tasted very thin on flavour, too much water I guess.