Sunday, 1 April 2012

Vegan Chocolate Cake & Icing!

I was recently in a position where I had to make a cake for someone who is lactose intolerant and another who is vegan. It goes without saying, I was pretty stumped on what to make. All the vegan cakes I have tried before were quite shocking with a flavour that resembled cardboard! So I started googling and found these recipes on Best Recipes. The reviews were decent so I thought I'd give it a shot - I figured if it was truly terrible I could simply blame the recipe!

Needless to say, I was quite surprised when people started complimenting me on my baking prowess (figuring at first they were simply being kind) but once I took a bite it all became terribly clear - IT WAS DELICIOUS! One of the best chocolate cakes I have ever had - for those in Australia, a good example would be that it tastes very similar to the Sara Lee chocolate sheet cakes.

The below recipes are adapted versions of those that I found on Best Recipes.

Cake Ingredients:

3 cups self raising flour
2/3 cups cocoa
2 cups caster sugar
2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup coffee (I used espresso from our coffee machine, but you could use strong instant coffee)
2/3 cups canola oil (you can use vegetable oil)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 180C (375F).
2. Sift flour, cocoa, sugar and salt in a large bowl.
3. Add all remaining ingredients and combine well.
4. Pour mixture into a greased cake tin - this cake pops out of the tin so easily once its cooked!
5. Bake until cooked through - I believe mine took about 40 minutes.

Icing Ingredients:

1 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa, level
2 teaspoons nutelex (nutelex is a non-dairy spread made from canola oil. If your not a vegan or lactose intolerant you could use soft regular butter)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon boiling water

1. Sift icing sugar and cocoa.
2. Add nutelex (or soft butter) and vanilla. Pour in boiling water and beat well until combined.
3. Spread over cooled cake and refrigerate until needed (I made mine late at night whilst the cake was still warm and it ended up dipping all over the edges!).

You could also make this recipe into cupcakes, just divide the mixture into patty cases and cook for about 15 minutes. Either way, its super delicious so give it a try!

Sunny xx

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