In the Kitchen: Grandma Rosie’s Chocolate Cake

Anika Denise, author of “Baking Day at Grandma’s,” joined The Rhode Show to make Grandma Rosie’s Chocolate Cake from her children’s book.

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup high quality cocoa
1 cup flour
Pinch of salt
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup boiling hot water
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix the sugar, cocoa, flour and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Using a spoon, make a hollow in the center of the mixture. Add the butter in slices to the hollow center.
  4. Stir the baking soda into the cup of boiling water. While it foams, pour it over the butter. Let the mixture sit until the butter melts and the batter cools.
  5. Add the egg and vanilla to the bowl and mix all the ingredients well.
  6. Pour the batter into a slightly greased 9-by-9-inch baking pan and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes. Test with a cake tester. It should come out dry.
  7. Allow the cake to cool after baking. Then frost with your choice of frosting.

*To adapt this cake recipe to mini cupcakes: Pour batter into mini-muffin (cupcake) pan lined with cupcake liners. Reduce baking time to 13-15 minutes (Depending on your oven.) Let cool. Frost, add some sprinkles, and enjoy!

More on Anika’s initiative to Bake it Forward:

The idea came while reading a cooking magazine with her daughter, looking for ideas for new recipes.

Local author Anika Denise—who wrote Baking Day at Grandma’s—a children’s picture book about baking and sharing, was flipping through Cooking Light when an article caught her eye.

“The article called for readers to bake a second batch to share this holiday season, and to post pictures on social media with the hashtag #BakeItForward,” said Ms. Denise. “My daughter mentioned that it sounded a lot like the premise of our picture book, where three little cubs have a baking day with their grandmother, but instead of eating all the treats themselves, they wrap them up to share and give as gifts. It got me thinking that baking it forward would be a great thing to encourage in our local community.”

Thus, #BakeItForwardBarrington was born.

In partnership with Heartworks of Rhode Island, a non-profit Acts of Kindness group that brings help and messages of healing to those in need, Ms. Denise is calling on local residents to donate baked goods to be distributed to local families, community centers, shelters, nursing homes, and fire and police stations.

“We all do a lot of baking around the holidays. Why not bake an extra batch as a thank you or a message of holiday cheer for those in need?” said Denise.

Residents interested in baking for #BakeItForwardBarrington should contact Anika Denise at for information on where to drop off baked goods. Borrowing from the Heartworks tradition of including written messages along with items in their Acts of Kindness outreach, Ms. Denise is asking volunteer bakers to include a signed note of good cheer to deliver with the goodies.

And she’s also encouraging folks to share pictures of their goodies on social media with the hashtag #BakeItForwardBarrington.

“Kindness and giving is contagious. The more we tweet and share the #BakeItForward premise, the more we’ll encourage others to do the same,” said Denise. “I’d love it if we inspired towns all across the country to jump on Cooking Light’s fabulous idea and organize charitable baking campaigns in their communities.”

Baked goods will be delivered all throughout the East Bay and Providence on Saturday and Sunday, December 20th and 21st.


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