We love this “Kibble Cake” that reader Lorena Hawkins from Salem, MA made for her daughter’s doggie-themed first birthday. “The recipe is chocolate poor man’s cake (a common depression-era recipe) with homemade marshmallow fondant. It’s not the greatest work of art ever, but we all had a good time watching her chow down on it. The recipe below has been the default for family birthdays for four generations.”

Poor Man’s Cake

Source: Lucille Hawkins

3 cups flour

2 cups sugar

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

6 tbs cocoa powder

2 cups water

3/4 cups vegetable oil

2 tbs vinegar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add all ingredients to a large bowl and mix with a wisk or spoon, being careful not to over beat. Pour into a buttered and cocoa powdered 13″ x 9″ cake pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

And here is a link for the marshmallow fondant.

Photo Patrick Rogers Photography


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Comments (3)


  1. Posted by: Quyen

    Useful document, I truly watch for messages by you.

  2. I was the photographer at that first birthday party, and was offered a piece of that cake. It was delicious! So delicious, in fact, that we asked Lorena to make our wedding cake for us a few months later, and that was equally delicious! Lorena truly has a talent!

  3. Pingback: your photos | You Take the Cake |

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