Mayonnaise Chocolate Cake Recipe

This is a very old recipe that I got from Blue Peter when I was about 10 years old. As a child I had developed a great dislike of marzipan and wasn’t all that keen on fruit cake so my mum used to bake this cake as an extra cake at Christmas. It was enjoyed by everyone who ate it, as long as we didn’t tell them what the ingredients were!

I was sure that when I got married my wedding cake would be a huge mayonnaise cake but fate and the generosity of friends meant that I ended up with a beautifully decorated traditional wedding cake so I cut it with grace and didn’t eat any of it. We still have a huge chunk of it wrapped in tin foil in the under stairs cupboard!

Now I bake this cake for birthdays or big treats and we love it with cream and strawberries in the summer. It was in imperial back then and I still think in ounces so here it is in all its glory:

10 oz plain flour
8 oz sugar
1½ tsp baking powder

7oz mayonnaise (not a low fat one)
4tbsp cocoa powder
8 floz boiling water
1tsp vanilla essence

Sieve the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add the sugar.
Then add the mayonnaise and mix it all up until it looks a bit like breadcrumbs.

Add the cocoa powder to the hot water and pour this into the bowl along with the vanilla essence. Stir this up until everything is a very dark shiny brown and you can’t see any more breadcrumbs.

Pour into a single tin and cook at Gas 4 180° 375°F for about 1 hour 20 minutes. Cooking time may depend on the size of your tin. You can cook this in a 7″ or 8″ round tin for that long but if you use a bigger tin it will cook more quickly. Check it after an hour and see what you think. The top should have cracks in it and a skewer should come out clean.

This is a dense, sturdy cake that is best served with something like cream or ice cream or mascarpone with fruit on the side.

Here it is in action on El Famosisimo’s 18th birthday dusted with icing sugar and topped with lots of candles that struggled in the breeze.


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