Tuesday, October 31, 2006

easy buttermilk cupcakes

I basically used this recipe with very little modification. I used vegan butter (soy garden), and you can
also make your own vegan buttermilk simply by pouring out a cup of soy/rice/almond milk, taking out 1 tablespoon and pouring in 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. Let that sit for a bit and it will begin to bubble and thicken a little.

I cut down the sugar in these as well, with the intention of making a frosting, but I never did. Lazy. I also added in a handful of crushed walnuts, so these really turned out to be brownie cupcakes.

The cupcakes themselves were really nice and light and super simple to make.

One-Bowl Buttermilk Chocolate Cupcakes
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3/4 (scant) cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk (or vegan option)
1/4 cup vegan butter, melted and cooled
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.
Pour in the rest of the ingredients (it's helpful to have the buttermilk at about room temperature) and stir until just combined.
Divide evenly into the prepared muffin tin and bake for 14-16 minutes at 350F, or until a tester comes out clean.
Cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

plum cake

Plums were on sale at Stanely's so I decided to break in my
fancy cake pan and make a plum cake. It smelled great (as you
could guess by Jordan trying to sniff it) and I managed to
unmold the cake with no problems!

I had previously made some apple and pear sauce and
used it as an egg substitute in the cake (the pears
were a nice addition and Anthony's suggestion). Making this
was insanely easy - cut up about 3 lbs of fruit (2 lb of apples,
1 lb of pears), put in a pot with 1 T lemon juice, 1/2 cup of
apple juice or cider, some spices (I put in a little cinnamon and
maple syrup) and stew until the fruit is falling apart. Blend and
adjust spices as needed! Done! I added 1 T of vanilla at the end,
but that is mainly because I tend to dump vanilla in everything.

The recipe is adapted from this.
The original recipe fits a 9" pan, but since the pan I used was a bit
wider and also taller, I doubled the recipe.

Fancy and easy plum cake (could be vegan):

6 T apple-pear sauce (regular applesauce would be great as well)
3/4 c sugar (I used raw unbleached sugar)
2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
2 t baking powder
2 pinches of salt
1/2 cup almond milk (can use milk or any fake milk)
6 T melted butter (could use vegan butter)
1 T lemon juice
1/2 t vanilla
15 small plums, stoned and cut into quarters lengthwise

Heat oven to 350
Butter and flour or spray a cake pan

Combine the apple-pear sauce and sugar, and then add in the milk,
butter, lemon juice and vanilla.

In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt, and then
add to the wet ingredients.

This is where you can get all fancy - if using a regular cake pan, pour
the batter into the pan and top with the sliced fruits in any way you
like. Since I was a bit nervous about my new cake pan I put some
slices of plum at the bottom of the pan, topped that with half the batter,
added more plums, topped that off with the rest of the batter, and then
put more plums on top. I figured that if I couldn't invert the cake nicely,
at least one top/bottom would be pretty.

Bake for 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean
and you are done!

Here are some pictures of the cake in the mold and out just to give you
a better idea: