“Wibbly Wobbly, Timey Wimey.”~The Doctor
Had a big party on the weekend. Made a big cake for it that kind of speaks for itself. It was vegan. It was delicious. It was bigger on the inside.
I used a 30cm square tin and did a triple batch of the recipe, cooked it for 1 hour 50 minutes at 150deg fan forced. I wrapped up my tin in a couple of brown paper layers so the edges wouldn’t dry out. Cut it into quarters, stacked it up using plenty of peanut butter icing as glue and then set to work on the fondant….
For just a regular everyday cake, I make this recipe in a 22cm round tin as follows:
What you need:
- 2 cups plain flour (could try GF flour….)
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder (good, heavy dense stuff….I wish I’d weighed mine to give a more accurate measurement)
- 1 ½ teaspoons bi-carb soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups raw sugar
- 1 ½ cups rice milk (or espresso)
- ½ lemon, juiced
- ½ cup vegetable oil (I don’t really recommend olive oil unless you REALLY like that taste)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1 vanilla pod)
What to do:
- Pre-heat oven to 150 degrees fan forced (165, normal). Line a 22cm round tin with paper.
- Sift all the dry ingredients, except sugar, together in a mixing bowl. Add wet ingredients and mix until well combined. You can do this by hand or on a medium speed in an electric mixer.
- Pour mixture into tin and bake for 50-60 minutes. Do not open the oven before 45 minutes. I usually wait until the cake pulls away from the side a bit or doesn’t stay completely sunk when you push the top. It will not “spring back” because it does not contain a lot of rising agent. Waiting for it to do so will lead to over cooking. ICK!
- I like my chocolate cake with a bit of peanut butter icing on top. I talk about how to make that in general terms here at the very last point in the “what to do’s”. It is not an exact science. Make it to your own taste. For something a little more grown up, try a coffee icing…….
“Confusion of goals and perfection of means seems, in my opinion, to characterize our age.”~Albert Einstein
Got to make me a vegan chocolate mud cake for the end of the month. I need to make it in a 10inch square tin. It needs to fill the tin to the top. Need to be carved and stacked and have fondant put on it. Needs to be firm. Needs to not be shite. *head explodes*
So, thus begins my chocolate mud cake baking experiments. I’m using my 22cm square tin for scaled down experiments. I don’t know what that it in inches because i can’t find my tape measure or ruler that has inches. DAMN YOU, IMPERIAL MEASUREMENTS!!
Can you feel the stress yet?
On the upside, people are eating a lot of cake. I am baking cake and giving it away because this has also coincided with my return to a proper health regime. It also has coincided with me returning to work 4 days a week. Good one, me.
So, first try is what you are seeing here. It’s not going to be used as my cake. It was a little bit crumbly. I have another cake in the oven right now with some alterations that I am going to talk about here.
Substituting butter is easy, milk is easy…but eggs? I Googled. I talked to people. I tried out the chia seed theory (1 tbsp chia + 3 tbsp water for each egg). Now I am trying out my Ogran No-Egg store bought egg replacement. I hope this is the key to my cake trouble. Or maybe this recipe I found isn’t really a mud cake and someone just said that because it makes it sound more appealing. I’m completely over analyzing toooooo much.
This cake tastes good. It’s a nice chocolate cake. What made it amazing was my special peanut butter icing. That, if I do say so myself, was pure genius. I think the evidence is in the photo. All I could get a picture of is one half eaten slice in the tin, right before it was snaffled up.
What you need:
- 270g brown sugar
- 3/4 cup coffee (I made decaf espresso)
- 125g Nutlex (or your chosen butter replacement)
- 50g Cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp bicarb soda
- 150g SR flour
- 2 tbsp plain flower
- 4 eggs worth of whatever you are using instead of real egg.
What to do:
- Pre-heat oven to 160deg. Line a square 22cm tin.
- In a saucepan combine the sugar, coffee, butter stuff and bicarb. Over a low heat, melt and dissolve all the ingredients. Leave aside to cool a bit.
- Sift into a bowl the four and cocoa.
- Add the egg stuff tot eh melted stuff and then combine with the dry ingredients. MIx until smooth, but try to do it fast so that the rising agent in the SR flour doesn’t do all it’s tricks before you cook!
- Cook for about 40-50min.
- Cool in tin before turning out and icing with a combination of peanut butter, Nutlex, icing sugar, a splash of whiskey, a splash of maple syrup, a dash of salt and a nice bit of vanilla extract. Basically, just make it to your taste!!!
“The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent not of passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious.”~Tom Robbins
The idea of putting vegetables into cake is, quite frankly, pure genius. Because, you know, it instantly makes them health food to be eaten with not a scrap of guilt.
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
We get an organic vegetable box every week and sometimes at the end of the week I am left with a couple of items I’m just not sure what to do with. Oh, I know, I could have roasted my leftover beetroot, but when I was pregnant and vomiting a few times EVERDAY for the entire time, I was also going through a stage of eating roasted beetroot (over supply from my mother). So much that my pee changed colour one week! Eeek! Like a lot of things I ate frequently while pregnant, I not get a little be squirrelly at the thought of eating roast beetroot.
I found this recipe on Taste.com and them proceeded to add twice as much cocoa and less flour. I was actually trying to adjust the quantities so I could cook it in my slice tin. Why? Every week I bake something with the kids that becomes a treat. I needed it to be in a form that could be cut into small, easy to hold portions for my littlies. This turned out perfect.
It also stopped me from portion distortion. Not that eating a lot of this cake is a problem since it is health food, right? 😉
The true test of this cake’s yumminess? My friend’s husband ate it and thought is was really good. He absolutely detests beetroot.
What you need:
- 150-200g (about 2) trimmed beetroot, washed
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder
- 50ml water
- 3/4 cup, firmly packed brown sugar
- 2 eggs, lightly whisked
- 1/4 milk
- 60ml (1/4 cup) vegetable oil OR 40g melted butter + 1 tbsp oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3/4 cups self-raising flour, sifted OR plain flour + 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
What to do:
- Pre-heat your oven to 180 degreeC (160 fan forced).
- Cut beetroot into quarters and then roast in the oven until a tender (doesn’t have to be really soft, though).
- Left beetroot cool a bit and then trim the skin off, and put in a blender with the water and oil. Blend until the beetroot is very finely chopped. More so than what grating would produce.
- In a mixing bowl (electric mixer is best) place the eggs, vanilla and beetroot mixtures. Combine thoroughly.
- Combine the dry ingredients and then sift into the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined.
- Bake in a lined slice tin (mine is 27 x 18cm) for about 25 minutes, but really keep an eye on it. You don’t want to dry it out!
- I iced my cake with cream cheese, cocoa and a little bit of icing sugar blended up. I did that part by taste. I don’t like my frosting to be very sweet. I also like my chocolate to be a little bitter….