Delicious World of Chefette Spicy

formerly Ladles and High Heels

Flaky-Dense Chocolate Cooker Cake


Long long ago, one of my aunts made a chocolate cake. I was around seven at that time and ovens were practically unknown to mankind… in India. I got to taste this delicious cake, which was eggless, on one of my cousin’s ninth birthday and life was never the same again. I craved this dense, rich cake over the years but never really got to taste it again. Years went by and the memories of that fun party, primarily highlighted by the wonderful cake, kept coming back to me.

cooker cake2

So the last time I did remember it, I decided to find out the recipe. My aunt was not reachable but I did remember one vital part of the recipe: she made it in a pressure cooker. We use the cooker rather extensively in Indian cooking so sourcing one was not a problem. The problem lay in figuring out what to put under the batter to heat it up. I know my aunt used sand but where do I go for sand, so far away from the sea? A quick research online gave me two options: steaming it or heating it directly. I was afraid that the latter would probably damage my rubber ring (that thing we call gasket in India) so I opted for the former method.

I ended up with a wonderfully moist, dense and flaky cake that I am in love with. Though it lacked the rather earthy flavor of the cake using the sand method, it was good! And who knew something as easy as steaming could yield such a rich dish?!

This is how I made it:

Chocolate Cooker Cake

One and a half cup all-purpose flour

Four Tbsp dark cocoa powder

Three quarter cup sugar

One tsp vanilla essence

One cup yogurt (or replace with buttermilk. You could also use soy/almond milk for a vegan version)

Half tsp baking soda

One and a half tsp baking powder

Half cup vegetable oil

Mix the dry and wet ingredients in separate bowls. Add the dry to the wet, while whisking it. I used the KitchenAid but a whisk or a hand mixer works equally well. Fill the bottom of the cooker with water (incidentally, salt, raw rice and beans work too) and place a steaming plate in the bottom. Grease and flour a container well. Transfer the batter and make sure it is sealed well. Use a perfectly-fitting lid or aluminum foil. This is key: *Make sure it is tightly sealed* While steaming, water has chances of entering the cake container, making the cake soggy and, well, gross.

Close the lid but do not use the weight. Steam the cake on medium-low for 45 minutes, until completely done. You can check the doneness by inserting a knife or a fork.

This cake is not overly sweet, primarily because of the dark chocolate. If you want a sweeter cake, add one cup sugar. I “iced” it with Nutella so the sweetness was perfect. If you want something fancier, I would suggest a chocolate ganache icing. But then, I, as everyone knows, am partial towards ganache so I feel that works the best. I am sure a simple buttercream frosting works really well too.

If you don’t have a cooker, you can steam it in a large container with a tight lid too. Finally, 45 minutes is a ballpark. It could take you longer or lesser time. It really depends on the size of your cake container.

cooker cake


Author: vaish

I am a business student, food blogger and mommy to a beautiful little baby girl I lovingly call Kohlrabi (yes, like the veggie). I love vintage fashion, ganache and Ina Garten :)

9 thoughts on “Flaky-Dense Chocolate Cooker Cake

  1. Aaah.. I always wondered how ppl made cakes in pressure cookers!! looks yumm 🙂 Could have used pictures of the process though 🙂

    • So true! Every time I am about to make something, I tell myself that the process needs to be photographed but it is a whole new story when I get into it. I become so involved that my camera fails to enter my kitchen! But since you did ask, I shall make sure I click pictures from the next time

  2. Vaish, am going to try it out with sugar-free. Problem is how much sweetner to add. One sp of sugar-free is roughly 1 1/2 sp regular sugar.

    • Amma, there is a sugar-free especially for baking and we get it in India. You should try that instead of the usual sugar. If you still have problems with the measurement, let me know. I will research! Love.

  3. Reblogged this on cerulean doctor and commented:
    when i go home i’ll bake this

  4. Ooh, I want to try this today. I haven’t baked in *ages*, and you just inspired me.
    I have an oven/microwave that the landlady’s left in the house, but I didn’t bother unpacking any of my baking stuff.
    I’ve never baked in a pressure cooker, though, and it sounds fun. Debating salt vs water in the cooker.

    • In that case, you’ve gotta try this and get into the groove again. The texture of the boiled cake was more like Dhokla and I am yet to try the salt method. If you do opt for that, let me know how it turned out 🙂

  5. No kidding…a pressure cooker cake? Who knew this was possible? Looks really delicious.

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