This is a great way to use up cocoa powder in your store cupboard and make a pudding that’s a little different to the usual fudgy cakes or brownies. The vanilla gives the bit sponge an edge that tastes indulgent. Cocoa powder is not the same as drinking chocolate powder which more often than not contains sugar.
For the pudding:
90g caster sugar
2 free range eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
175g self raising flour, sifted
2 tbsp cocoa, sifted
For the chocolate base:
60g brown sugar
3 tbsp cocoa
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4. Grease an ovenproof dish with a little butter. Preferably a dish sized 10cm or 4 inches deep and 20x23cm or 8×9 inches wide.
For the pudding, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy in a bowl.
Beat in the eggs with the vanilla if using, adding one spoon of the flour with each egg.
Fold in the remaining flour and tip in the cocoa. If the mixture is a little stiff, add a little more milk. Spread the pudding batter at the bottom of the dish.
In a saucepan, gently heat 300ml water, brown sugar and cocoa until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture resembles a runny sauce. This should take about 10-15 minutes. Pour the sauce over the pudding mixture and bake for 45-60 to minutes until the top is crisp and brown. The sponge will have risen through the sauce.
Serve warm with custard or cream.