Emergency chocolate cake

  • 75g butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1/4 cup milk

Throw these in a food processor and zap till well blended (it is easier if the butter is at room temperature (but for Emergency Chocolate Cake it usually isn’t 😉

Grease a middling size microwave-proof bowl, if you want to use a cake sized bowl then make double quantity.

Then add to the food processor:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Zap into a thick batter consistency, if it is solid add a little more milk (you can use soya etc. milk or water and milk powder).

Pour into bowl, and microwave on high for 2-3 mins till the top is firm. Cool then release onto a plate, eat while still warm, if you need a topping make extra mixture and use that (uncooked).

Romanesco and blue cheese

Romanesco fractals (photo By Nick Saltmarsh)

Typical of the use-less-resources recipes I’m expecting to post is the deliciously simple Romanesco and Blue Cheese. It’s a sophisticated yet frugal take on Cauliflower Cheese. Like Cauliflower Cheese it can be either a mildly sauced side dish for unrepentant carnivores, or the main attraction with other veges and carbohydrates as the meal.


Its simple get one of those fascinating fractal vegetables they call Romanesco (or Romanesco Broccoli or Broccoflower) cut it into florets and steam it. When cooked (I like it still slightly crunchy) add crumbled blue cheese (any cheap but sharp variety) and a dash of cream. Stir and salt to taste.

Simple as, but sophisticated and tasty. What I’m calling (with apologies to Ray McVinnie) “cheap smart and easy”.