Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
1 cup flour
7 tablespoons cocoa, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
14 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 1/4 cups hot water
whipped topping, optional

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together 3/4 cup sugar, flour, 3 tablespoons cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Stir in milk, butter, and vanilla; beat until smooth.

2. Spread batter into ungreased 8 or 9 inch square baking pan. Stir together remaining 1/2 cup sugar, brown sugar, and remaining 4 tablespoons cocoa; sprinkle evenly over batter. Pour hot water over top. Do not stir.

3. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the center is almost set. Lat stnd for 15 minutes; spoon into dessert dishes, spooning sauce from the bottom of the pan over the top. Garnish with Whipped topping or vanilla ice cream.

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