"I know you’re looking at this and thinking, chocolate cake? In a slow cooker?! It’s a very different cake from most and to be perfectly honest I have no idea why it works, I just know that it does," says Lorna Cooper, author of Feed Your Family For £20 A Week.

"Give it a go – but I mean it when I say below, don’t stir it!"

Ingredients
(Serves 8)

For the cake:
130g plain flour
150g white sugar
3tbsp cocoa powder
2tsp baking powder
1/4tbsp salt
125ml milk
75g butter
2tsp vanilla essence

For the topping:
100g caster sugar
100g soft brown sugar
25g cocoa powder
350ml hot water

Ice cream or custard to serve

slow cooker chocolate cake from Feed Your Family For £20 A Week by Lorna Cooper. See PA Feature FOOD Feed Your Family (Seven Dials/Andrew Hayes-Watkins/PA)
(Seven Dials/Andrew Hayes-Watkins/PA)

Method:

1. To make the cake, combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, then make a well in the centre.

2. Add the milk, butter and vanilla essence to the well, and whisk until smooth.

3. Pour the batter into the slow cooker.

4. To make the topping, mix the sugars and cocoa powder together in a bowl and sprinkle evenly over the top of the cake batter.

5. Pour the hot water evenly over the mix – and don’t stir! I know it doesn’t make sense, I know you’ll want to, but trust me, don’t stir!

6. Put the lid on and cook on high for about four hours. Serve straight out of the slow cooker with ice cream or custard.

Feed Your Family For £20 A Week by Lorna Cooper, photography by Andrew Hayes-Watkins, is published by Seven Dials. Available now.