1 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup milk
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and flour a 23cm x 23cm cake pan or line a muffin pan with paper liners.
In a medium bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla essence.
Combine flour and baking powder, add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Finally stir in the milk until mixture is smooth. Pour or spoon into the prepared pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes. For cupcakes, bake 20 to 25 minutes. Cake is done when it springs back to the touch.
4 tablespoons (80g) butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 cups icing sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
In a saucepan, melt butter and brown sugar over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved, then add milk. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
Sift together cocoa and icing sugar. Blend into butter mixture and add vanilla. If consistency is too stiff, add more milk.
Spread quickly over cooled cake, as icing will set very fast.