You can whip up the perfect chocolate cake — without using your oven

Electricity outages have left us in the dark, but nothing like a chocolate cake baked on the stove top to lift the spirits

11 November 2021 - 09:09
Stove-top chocolate cake. Stock image.
Stove-top chocolate cake. Stock image.
Image: 123RF/ mizina

It had to happen. Just when I thought it was safe to quickly whip up a chocolate cake, as there’s nothing like a decadent dark moist chocolate cake to soothe the worries of the world when it feels so topsy turvy, I rustled up the ingredients of my fave recipe, popped it into the oven and some minutes into baking the electricity failed, yet again.

Left in the lurch and powerless, this had crept up on me unsuspectingly — not according to the plan as it does so annoyingly with regularity these days. So I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best and the residual heat in the oven to save the day.

It didn’t, instead an hour later, I gingerly opened the now cool oven and removed something that looked like a collapsed volcano, the lava, a stodgy sticky mess in the middle of the hollow, the end bits a tad crispy that not even custard could rescue.

Cooking in these times in between haphazard and long power outages has turned preparing meals, and most other things, upside down. If you are lucky enough to have a gas hob or gas burner it’s all become one-pot, stove-top ideas — pasta, stews/throw togethers, stir fries and frying.

And recently I’ve rediscovered steaming — cooking fish, chicken or veg over a pan of simmering water has come to the rescue of many a meal. Which got me thinking, how about ‘baking’ a cake in a pot on the stove top? 

Good news, it works, really well and offers a moist, moreish and soft bake which will not only save on electricity — when we have it — as the oven doesn’t even need to be turned on. Done this way, ensure you cool the cake well before turning it out, dollop over spoonfuls of decadent gooey icing, cut a big slice, make a cup of tea and put your feet up and life certainly takes on a new meaning.