The sacrifices I make.
I’m tellin’ ya.
My sister sent me an email with a recipe for “Chocolate Cake in a Mug“. She had just gotten it from a friend, but hadn’t tried it.
Well, of course I immediately thought of you, dear readers. Because of course you would want to know if this works. Wouldn’t you?
So with only totally selfless motives, and thinking only of you, I immediately set forth. Well, actually, first I Googled it to see if it was something worth trying. Some comments said it was the worst thing they’d ever had, and others said it was really good. Obviously a huge difference of opinion. What’s a girl to think? Who are you going to believe? Clearly I had no option but to try it for myself. And for you.
So off I went to the kitchen, with the recipe in hand. (My version of the recipe specifies using cake flour, and that the cooking time was for a 1000-watt microwave.)
A few minutes later, we were gobbling down some chocolate cake. Well, actually, it was mostly like chocolate cake, although it definitely had an eggy taste to it – like something in between a cake and a souffle. But it wasn’t too bad! In my excitement, however, I neglected to get out the camera, so I can’t show it to you. Bad blogger!
I noticed in my research that some people suggested using only an egg white instead of a whole egg, or using half an egg, in order to reduce the egginess. But then I found a different recipe that didn’t have an egg in it, but used baking powder instead. It sounded much more like a real cake. So of course, what option did I have but to try that one too?
So back I went, with recipe number two in hand.
This recipe only makes a cake about half the size of the first one – it comes out pretty much cupcake-sized, which is really more suitable for one person than the first recipe. And the taste test? We both deemed it a success! Quite tasty, and much more cake-like than the first version. It would definitely do for a quick dessert when you get that craving. It’s pretty much instant gratification in a cup.
Here it is right after cooking – unlike the first recipe, this one didn’t rise over the top of the mug, and when done, it only filled about 1/3 of the mug:
And here it is turned out on a plate, topped with some shaved semi-sweet chocolate:
Maybe next time I’ll mix up a little cream cheese frosting to dollop on top.
Cake in a Cup
2 tablespoons flour*
1 and 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cocoa powder
A pinch of salt
2 Tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon oil
Spray a microwave-safe cup or mug (about 12 oz or so) with cooking spray. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients together. (You can mix it in the cup, but it’s harder to get it all blended together well that way.) Pour the batter into the cup. Microwave on full power for 60 seconds. If necessary, continue to cook in 15-second intervals until the cake is done. The total cooking time will depend on your microwave wattage and altitude, so you’ll probably need to experiment. My microwave is only 850 watts, and I cooked it for 90 seconds. The cooking time is definitely the most critical part. If you overcook it, it will be nasty. Truly.
Let cool slightly (at least a few seconds, if you can wait that long) and then tip it out onto a plate, using a butter knife to help slide it out if necessary.
I put some shaved chocolate on top of the cake as soon as it came out of the oven, and let it melt a little bit before taking the cake out of the mug. You might also try throwing a few chocolate chips right into the batter if you like. Or nuts.
I also found these other instructions for Cake in a Corning Ware Bowl (or mug), which uses cake mix and instant pudding as the base for the cake. So if chocolate’s not your thing, you can choose whatever flavor you like. Maybe I’ll have to try that one too. But of course, that would only be so that I can review it for you. I certainly wouldn’t be doing it for myself.
* Note: Although all-purpose flour worked fine, cake flour would probably give a nicer texture. If you don’t have cake flour on hand, you can make a substitute for it by taking 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour, then removing 1 teaspoon of the flour, and replacing it with 1 teaspoon of cornstarch. Mix the flour and cornstarch together well.