Place 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1 cup of sugar, 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in an 8-inch square baking dish. Mix the dry ingredients to combine and spread them evenly over the bottom of the pan.
Form three wells in the dry ingredients. Add 2 teaspoons of vanilla in one well, 1 teaspoon of white vinegar in the second and 6 tablespoons of vegetable oil in the third. Pour 1 cup of cold water over the dry ingredients and mix with a fork to form the batter. Bake the cake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 35 minutes.
Wacky cakes have been traced to the Great Depression in the United States. Bakers sometimes call them Depression cakes, either for the three wells for the wet ingredients or the fact that they come out of the Great Depression. During World War II, they were sometimes called war cakes because they did not require rationed ingredients, such as butter, eggs or milk. Some of these cakes are made with fruit or raisins instead of chocolate. Original recipes sometimes used bacon fat instead of cooking oil.Learn more about Desserts