easy + moist chocolate cake | the perfect cake for kids to make

If you follow Lo’s Kitchen, I’m sure you’re now used to seeing pics of food taken on our big old kitchen table. Looking closely, you would of noticed how ridiculously marked this much loved table is. It’s covered in paint (from our many messy craft sessions) and has so much flour caked in to the holes of the timber from my obsession with making my own pizza dough. Cork Daddy and I always wanted a table with character. We’ve definitely achieved that goal after owning it for only 5 years. Think of how scuffed up it’ll be in years to come.

I had a bit of a brain snap recently and took the kids to Kmart to check out their art supplies. We came home with 2 large tubs of glue and a huge packet of assorted jars of glitter. My sister Ali (AKA babysitter extraordinaire) wasn’t too impressed with my decision. “YOU DID WHAT? YOU BOUGHT THE GIRLS GLITTER!!!???” Ali reckons she’d sooner leave a toddler alone with a box of matches and some kero.

Ok, so I now see what she meant. What WAS I thinking? My brother thought I’d intentionally ‘sparkled’ up the kitchen table for my food photography. “I think it looks good” says Pete, of the gold glitter that has found it’s way in to every crevice of the wooden table, and the whole house for that matter.

Compared to the mess we made last week, a few chocolate sprinkles everywhere seemed tame in comparison; so the girls helped me whip up a choccie cake last night. This recipe makes the best chocolate cake going round and is perfect for your little helpers to get stuck in to. It’s from a fabulous cookbook that my mother in law gave me a few years back, The Ignatian Table. It’s a compilation of a whole heap of recipes that have been put forward from parents at the school and has some fabulous and easy recipes. This particular chocolate cake recipe was sent in by a Wendy Duggan. Thanks Wendy.

This cake is so good because I simply get a large mixing bowl out of the cupboard (and TWO wooden spoons of course), position the girls on the bench stools and start adding ingredients to the bowl in no particular order, letting them fight it out over who gets to mix more. I don’t bother with a mix master, don’t sift any of the dry ingredients and I really like it because it doesn’t have butter in the recipe (remembering to take butter out of the fridge to soften is one of my pet hates).

I then scrape the mixture in to a large round cake tin and pop it in the oven, whilst the girls get to work on the clean up (licking the bowl). I make some simple chocolate icing and Charlotte and Annabelle have a ball icing the cake and sprinkling the little choccie bits over the top. It makes a large cake – perfect for kids parties.

So go on. Grab the kiddies and quiz them on what goes in (or doesn’t go in) to the cake mix; let them get involved in not only the mixing of the batter, but the icing too. A bit of mess never hurt anyone.

Just whatever you do. Don’t buy glitter.

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easy + moist chocolate cake

1 3/4 cups of plain flour
2 x cups of castor sugar
3/4 cups of cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons of bicarb soda
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
2 x eggs
1 x cup of milk
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
2 x teaspoons of vanilla extract
1 x cup of boiling water

simple icing
3 x large tablespoons of icing sugar
1 x large tablespoon of cocoa
50 grams of butter, softened
A couple of drops of milk
A couple of drops of boiling water

Some choclettes, to sprinkle over the top

  • Preheat oven to 180℃ and grease and line a large round cake tin with baking paper.
  • In a large mixing bowl, simply throw in all ingredients.
  • Mix really well with a wooden spoon (the mixture will be quite runny).
  • Pour in to the prepared cake tin and bake for approx 40 minutes or until cooked. (The cake is cooked once a cake skewer comes out clean).
  • Let the cake cool on a wire rack whilst you get to work on the icing.
  • Once the cake has completed cooled, smear the icing over the top of the cake and sprinkle the choclettes over the top.

simple icing

  • In a small mixing bowl, add the softened butter, icing sugar, and cocoa and stir using a fork. Very sparingly, add a couple of drops of boiling water and continue to stir. Then, add a couple of drops of milk and continue to stir until the icing is all combined and has a nice spreadable texture. (Go easy on the liquid because it’s easier to add more liquid as you go, harder if you add too much liquid and the icing is too runny). 

Lo’s tips

  • Be careful with the boiling water when little people are mixing (and licking) the batter.

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If you make this chocolate cake, please leave your comments below. xx

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