I'm making black cake today. I first came upon it in a book by Laurie Colwin Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen. I was thrilled to try it years ago when my roommates, 2 sisters from St Lucia, received a black cake from their mother one Christmas. It was in fact as good as I had imagined. I always wanted to try to make one myself. Laurie Colwin includes the recipe in her book, so it really was just a matter of getting the ingredients together and doing it.
So here I am. I did a web search for one ingredient, burnt sugar essence. Not something you would typically find in your local supermarket. (I did, my Safeway carries it, but yours might not). In doing so I came across this article and recipe variation. I'll be using this recipe today. But I was curious how much cake I would have gotten from several pounds of fruit and flour. Further searching found that others more driven than I, did follow Ms. Colwin's original recipe and had a lot more cake than they expected. So far, mine looks pretty good. I may have burnt out my hand mixer trying to manage all the ingredients. On the bright side, I'm pretty sure I didn't overwork the batter. I've to let it rest for a while before I can try it so, I can share my wait with you. Now you have to admit that this is a properly named cake. These babies are black!