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Saturday, 19 April 2008

Chocolate Cake


I finally got some time to write down this post. And as promised, here's the chocolate cake recipe. Chocolate cake is a favourite for many people, vegans and non-vegans alike! One of my biggest fear when I was going through my transition phrase from vegetarian to vegan was how was I going to bake nice cakes without eggs? I have been always passionate about cooking and baking. And chocolate cake has always been my favourite!

I stumbled over this post one day on the Veganfitness forum and was thrilled to find that I could still make good chocolate cake and better still without eggs! From what I can recall, this vegan chocolate cake is far better than any non-vegan ones I’ve eaten before. I never liked the smell of eggs when the cake was baking or even afterwards. I only wished I had discovered this recipe before!

I made this cake for my sister's friend's boyfriend (It was the latter’s birthday). I am always very nervous when baking cakes for people other than my family. As sometimes, despite using the same ingredients and doing the same procedures, the cake just doesn't turn out quite the same. I've never been able to understand this. *sigh*
I was very nervous about this one; it didn't rise as much as it should have. It usually rises to almost double but for some reason this one did not quite rise very well. It could be because I opened the oven halfway through to put in my Semolina Carrot Cake which I was baking simultaneously.
Opening the oven sometimes can cause cakes to collapse! But anyway, the feedback I got for the cake was good! I even got a piece to taste the next day! The taste was just the same as usual.

The recipe on the Veganfitness forum is for quite a small cake. I’ve quadrupled some of the quantities (adjusting some) and I’ve also substituted the vegetable oil for melted vegan margarine.
Although margarine does make the cake taste better, I think in future I will try using vegetable oil itself to cut down on the hydrogenated fats. I’ve been reading DrEddyClinic Alkaline Diet Blog on Trans-Acidic Fats and how they can be very harmful for the body.

So here goes the Chocolate Cake…

480 g self raising flour (or 1 additional teaspoon of baking soda if using plain)
6 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
Pinch salt
300 g demerara/unrefined sugar
225 ml melted margarine
450 ml soy milk
6 tablespoons vinegar (cider vinegar is best)
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

200 g vegan cooking chocolate
4 tablespoons water

  • Grease and flour a 26 cm cake tin.
  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  • Mix together dry ingredients.
  • Mix together wet ingredients.
  • Gradually add wet ingredients to dry ingredients stirring gently so that they mix completely, but do not beat the mixture.
  • Pour the mixture into the cake tin.
  • Bake in oven for 40 minutes. Test whether the cake is dry by inserting a metal or bamboo skewer.
  • Leave to cool in the tin for at least an hour before turning out.

For the icing:
  • Break the chocolate to small pieces. Place in a non-stick pan over low heat with the water.
  • Stir gently and allow to melt. Stir and mix well until the melted chocolate is smooth.
  • Pour on the cake and spread evenly on the top and sides using a blunt knife or spatula.

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