November 18, 2012


fudge cake1a

After my recent marathon baking session for the cake stall we held at work in aid of Children in Need, I found myself with almost a full tin of Carnation caramel sitting in the fridge.  There were only a couple of tablespoons missing.  (I will tell you what I used them for later.)

Having made 8 cakes only three days before I didn’t really feel much like making another one but something special was coming up, so I did.

fudge cake2My dad has been out of sorts ever since my mum died nearly ten years ago.  Now, at the age of 84, he is courting.  After four months of seeing his lady friend he decided that today was the day we should meet her and arranged to bring her round for a cup of tea and a piece of cake.  Chocolate cake is her favourite, apparently. 

fudge cake3 There were quite a few pieces of cake from the cake stall left over and they would have looked and tasted perfectly fine on a pretty cake stand, served up for tea.

But for my dad’s girlfriend, serving up leftover cake just didn’t seem right.  Apparently she’s 80 and they are just good friends.  Hmmmmm………..I tried that one myself, many years ago.  My dad didn’t believe it then, either.

fudge cake4I looked at the Carnation website and found a recipe for chocolate fudge cake.  It looked easy and quick to make, which would fit the bill on a day when I needed to produce a nice cake but was feeling pretty much caked out.

fudge cake5

It was indeed very quick and easy to make.  There was no creaming of butter either for the cake or the icing, and the icing was especially delicious.  You simply melt chocolate and beat in the caramel with a little icing sugar.

The cake was light and even, well risen too.  With the glossy icing on top it looked gorgeous and it tasted every bit as good as it looked.  This could easily become my new first choice recipe for a cake that has maximum flavour and good looks for minimum effort.fudge cake1

I couldn’t make my mind up whether I should feel nervous or not.  It’s not every day that you are introduced to your father’s girlfriend.  I was also worried that she would feel nervous and I wanted to put her at ease.  I wonder if this is how my parents felt the first time I brought a boyfriend home.  There would have been cake for tea then too, I expect.

As it turned out, she didn’t have any.  They had been out for lunch and were full up, they said.  Oh well, more for us.  She’s a very nice person, too.

Chocolate fudge cake – originally on the Carnation website but has since disappeared!


For the cake

175g self-raising flour

2½ tblsp cocoa powder

1tsp bicarbonate of soda

150g caster sugar

2 eggs

150ml corn oil

150ml milk

1tsp vanilla extract

1 tblsp Carnation caramel

For the icing

125g dark chocolate, 70%cocoa solids

1 can Carnation caramel, less the tablespoon used for the cake

1tsp vanilla extract

1 tblsp icing sugar


Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°fan/gas mk 4.  Grease two 7” sponge tins and line the bases with circles of parchment.

Sift the flour, bicarb and cocoa powder into a large bowl.  Add the sugar and stir together.

In a separate bowl, beat together the oil, milk, eggs and one tablespoon of the caramel until smooth.

Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix well.  Pour into the prepared tins and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Cool in the tins for a few minutes then turn out onto a wire rack.

To make the icing, melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Beat in the rest of the tin of caramel and the vanilla.  Sift in the icing sugar and combine.

Use to fill and top the cake.  You could spread over the sides if you like, but the icing is quite sticky and this would make the cake difficult to eat without a fork I think.

Cuts into 8-10 slices.


  1. Oh yum, Jean. I shouldn't, but I know I will. :-) Sorry you efforts went untasted, but glad the meeting went well.

  2. That cake looks fantastic. I think I will have to give it a go

  3. now that my dear is what we call a CAKE!!!!!!... stunning!

  4. Thank goodness we've just eaten!!
    That IS a fudgy cake...but...
    I don't think the tin would see the cake if I had anything to do with it!
    I remember Carnation.... my Mother used to do a wonderful chocolate orange jelly-mouse with it...

    The WV would give time to enjoy all your recipes...
    "3617 lifetyms"

    1. Tim, you can turn condensed milk into caramel by boiling it in the tin for quite a long time.
      Otherwise, use Bon Maman confiture de lait - if you can possibly manage not to eat the whole jar before it gets into the cake !!

    2. I might have a go with La Borde's Confiture de Lait... I only need to pop up the hill for that... it might, therefore, last until I get back........ damn, just thinking about it is making me drool! I think I'd have to get all the ingredients ready for both icing and cake... and start the icing the moment the cake went in!
      Now where's the bread and the squeezy tube of YouKnowHoooz Condensed Milk?

    3. Tim, how could you be so cruel as to remind me that condensed milk comes in very handy tubes.......

    4. Did you need reminding? I've noticed here that it comes as a twin-pack... one for home and one for 'le camping'??

  5. That looks to be a lovely cake and quick and easy makes it especially inviting.

    1. Phil, I have looked back at your blog and the recipe is essentially very similar to Michael Barry's recipe that you posted about a while ago. That uses black treacle instead of caramel if I remember correctly.......I feel a back-to-back test coming on !!

    2. Yes, I did notice the similarity. It's a good way to produce a choc cake. I have a vague memory of adding some confiture de lait to Mr B's cake once when no treacle was available, but I can't remember if it made much difference to the taste.