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18 August 2014


Our oldest son is vegan and so was his birthday cake. By request: 

This is the best vegan chocolate cake I’ve managed so far. The cake is impressively tall, dark, and moist. (You were expecting “handsome”, weren’t you? Well, it’s that too.) Though I find the cake itself is relatively tasteless compared to the buttercream, it is very tender and the brush with Irish Whiskey makes a huge difference. We wanted to lick the bowl with the buttercream.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two 7” X 3” springform baking pans with vegan margarine and parchment in bottom, then oil again + dust with flour

2 c. + 2 T. whole wheat pastry flour 
1 1/3 c. granulated sugar
1 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt (I think 1 t. next time?)
Whisk together all of the dry ingredients, set aside.

1 1/2 c. lo-fat coconut milk
2 T apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 c. strong brewed coffee
2/3 c. melted coconut oil
2 t. pure vanilla extract
Add the rest of wet mixture ingredients and beat until JUST blended. (Next time, reduce applesauce to 1 cup and add 1/4 cup Irish whiskey)

Fill pans 3/4 full and bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. This takes longer than you might expect—allow an hour or more. Cool completely and cut each in half horizontally, splitting to make four layers.

vegan buttercream:
2/3 c. vegan margarine, softened
2 1/2-3 c. powdered sugar
2/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
6 ozs. dairy-free semisweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
2 t. pure vanilla extract
2 T. Irish whiskey
1-2 T. coconut milk
Beat together all ingredients until light and fluffy, adding the powdered sugar in small amounts until you reach your desired consistency and sweetness. If it becomes too thick, add more coconut milk. If it's too thin, add more cocoa powder or powdered sugar. Beating for a few minutes will create a light, fluffy frosting. This makes enough buttercream to put between each layer + sides and top, but I prefer to leave the top plain and dust it with cocoa powder because the cake itself has an interesting texture.

Brush cut sides lightly with Irish whiskey. Put first layer on plate, spread buttercream, repeat twice, settle the last layer, leaving it plain on top. Spread buttercream around sides of cake and dust the top with cocoa powder.

Serve garnished with leaves and perhaps a scoop of dairy-free ice cream. 

NOTE: I use all organic ingredients, except for the the whiskey.

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