How ’bout that Congress y’all?

Representative: Cake

Constituent: Chocolate

Title Picture

It appears that a good amount of representatives are not doing a good job for their constituents. I’m sure you’re all aware of the government shutdown as we make our way through day 2. If not, then you’ve managed to avoid most news outlets in the past couple days and, I guess, bravo? But seriously, everyone is talking about this business (or lack there of)

Oh Ron Swanson
Oh Ron Swanson

Politico has a timeline of the events leading up to the shutdown here

NBC has an article about the winners and losers of the Shutdown here

USA Today is really focusing on what’s important by highlighting celeb opinions of the shutdown here…..

(if you’re really behind) CNN plays 20 questions to catch you up on the shutdown here

The Washington Post makes me sad with this article here

And NPR wants to make sure we’re not forgetting that there are even worse things in store for us here

So. Government Shutdown. Many are playing the blame game right now but we’re all adults here and we understand that blaming someone doesn’t make the issue go away. Let’s chalk it up to bad representation. And make a cake to take our minds off of it.

Chocolate has many different representatives, from the pastry to the doughnut but, bracing for the not-so-good-times ahead, it’s time to hide the eggs, hide the butter and hide the milk. This recipe hales from the hard times of the 1920s and 1930s. Government Shutdowns and Debt Ceiling limits being breeched don’t exactly say “economic prosperity” to me so I decided to bring this little gem of a cake back and tweek it a bit.

Taking away the eggs and milk and butter really put a damper on representing the chocolate. In order to give it a fuller flavor and to really highlight the chocolate, I replaced the cup of water the cake called for with a cup of coffee. I present to you the Government Shutdown Cake:


Dry ingredients for zee cake
Dry ingredients for zee cake

(adapted from this recipe)


1 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour

3 Tbls unsweetened cocoa powder

1 Cup Sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp white vinegar

1 tsp vanilla extract

5 Tbls vegetable oil

1 Cup Freshly Brewed Coffee


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease an 8×8 pan (I used Pam for Baking)
  3. In a bowl, shift and whisk together the dry ingredients
  4. Make 3 depressions in dry ingredients – two small, one larger (photo below)
  5. Pour vinegar in one depression, vanilla in the other and the vegetable oil in third larger depression.  Pour water over all
  6. Mix well until smooth, about 1 minute or less
  7. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes–until an inserted toothpick comes out clean


Government Shutdown Angerrr
Government Shutdown Angerrr


My Input: The original recipe says you can mix this up IN the pan but I skipped that poppycock and got myself a bowl. Mixing it in the pan makes a larger mess overall and you’re probably going to have unmixed ingredients hiding out in those corners (boo). Also, I’m not sure the depressions make any difference, you could try skipping them and post some feedback. I followed the directions as written and it made my cake look like an angry constituent so that was payoff enough for me. Baking time does vary so keep an eye on it after you pass that 30 minute mark. 
Find and Follow Baketocracy on Instagram!
Find and Follow Baketocracy on Instagram!


In all honesty, this cake tastes similar to one from a box mix but it has an addictive quality to it. It’s slightly more moist and definitely a denser. You could top it with whatever you deem fit but some melted dark chocolate would be great since that’s the flavor this cake features. On a related note: the things people come up with when they’re lacking are truly incredible. If you want more great depression life hacks, there’s a list here.

Happy Kitchen Adventures,





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