Now why would you want to bake a cake when camping, I hear you ask?
Because you can, of course! And it’s fun to make, too.
When you’re camping for a couple of weeks, being able to bake something is a nice change. So long as you take along the right equipment and ingredients, even a rich, moist, wickedly dark and slightly sticky chocolate cake is possible – and it will taste so good with that cup of coffee, freshly brewed on the fire whilst baking this cake.
You’ll need your largest flat-bottomed cast iron pot, with a lid, a round cake grid or trivet of some sort which fits into the pot and is heatproof (I use a small round cake rack) and a small cake tin.
This is not a large cake, but it makes enough for 8 good-sized slices, and is best eaten fresh. Oh, and it bakes perfectly well in the oven too, and is so delicious and easy, it’s worth making. Bake it at 180 deg C until done.
Chocolate Banana Cake
3/4 cup of cake flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 rounded Tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 cup cooking oil
1/2 cup water
1 banana, mashed (this is optional – you can leave this and the syrup out)
1 Tbsp syrup (I used maple flavoured)
1/2 Tbsp cider vinegar
Note: 1 cup = 250 mls, 1 Tbsp = 15 mls, 1 tsp = 5 mls
- Make a hot fire and place your empty pot on the grid, with the lid on. This is going to be your ‘oven’
- Butter the cake tin so that the cake won’t stick to it
- Mix all the dry ingredients together very well with a whisk or wooden spoon
- Mash the banana with the syrup, add to the dry ingredients
- Add the rest of the liquid ingredients and blend well, adding the vinegar last
- Pour the batter into the cake tin and place the tin onto the wire rack inside the hot pot, covering again quickly with the lid to retain the heat
- Check every 10 minutes by opening the lid a crack and peeping inside; the cake should take about 30 minutes to cook
- After 30 minutes remove the pot from the fire and test the cake by poking it with a sharp knife – if the knife comes out clean, the cake is baked. If not, leave the lid on for a while longer, but keep it off the fire. It should finish cooking inside it’s make-shift oven
- Remove the baked cake from the pot and turn out onto a plate
- Cool and then cover with tinned Caramel Treat, or just dust with a bit of icing sugar – you can even just eat it plain or with some custard!
This chocolate cake makes a good afternoon treat, still warm, or a good dessert, served with custard or whipped cream. And if you are going to make it when braai-ing at home, serve it with ice cream.
Happy camping and braai-ing this weekend, people!