A great retro cake recipe that has a slightly dense texture with a great chocolatey flavour. It improves with age!

From Amy Vanderbilt’s Complete Cookbook, 1961

Makes 12 servings

  • 1 ½ cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup cocoa, sifted
  • ¼ cup finely grated 70% chocolate
  • ½ cup butter, very soft (or it will not incorporate properly)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  1. Start oven at a moderate 350°F. Grease two round 8” cake pans, line each with a round of waxed paper. Grease the paper and then dust the pans lightly with flour.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients together into a bowl. Add the butter, milk and vanilla. Beat 2 minutes on medium speed, or 300 hand strokes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the eggs and beat 2 minutes more. Pour into prepared pans.
  3. Bake about 18-20 minutes. Let cool in pans a few minutes, then turn out on a cake rake to cool completely. Frost as desired.