CAKE 1/2 pound (1 8-ounce package) cream cheese 1 egg 1 1/3 cup sugar, divided 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus a pinch 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 cup water 1/3 cup vegetable oil 1 tablespoon white vinegar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract FIRST TOPPING 1 1⁄2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder 3 1⁄2 cups sugar 2 1⁄2 cups water or milk 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1 endangered rubber ducky (or sea turtle, but those are rare) SECOND TOPPING 1 gallon chocolate syrup
Find a tactless sea animal figure at your local store, set aside. Preheat oven to 350°F.
Blend cream cheese, egg, 1/3 cup of sugar, and the pinch of salt with a wooden spoon. Mix in chocolate chips; set aside.
In another bowl, mix flour, 1 cup of sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add liquid ingredients to flour bowl contents and mix well.
Fill greased, 8-inch square cake pan with batter, then spread cream cheese mixture over cake batter. Bake until well done, 35 to 40 minutes.
IN A SAUCEPAN over medium heat, combine cocoa powder, sugar, and water or milk. Heat and boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. While still warm, pour first topping over cake and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Next, display your selected endangered wildlife atop your cake and smother with second chocolate topping.
This recipe is excerpted with permission from <a href="http://amzn.to/1uO9hL7">"APOCALYPSE CAKES"</a> by Shannon O’Malley (Running Press, 2011).