Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Here I am!

The one that you love!

Okay, not really. But I haven't posted anything in a million years. I still have pictures that need to be processed on the other camera from MoFo. But I thought I'd post a very amateur non edited pic of a cake that I veganized today. And not only is it my first veganization, it's my first recipe that I'm posting here! But before that...

Food & Drink is a free magazine put out by the LCBO. It used to be my favorite mag in the whole world to cook out of (I have almost 10 years worth of copies!) but they don't offer a lot in the way of vegetarian / vegan variations. Now that I cook exclusively vegan at home, I'm finding that while I still enjoy leafing through the magazine, I'm just getting sad that I can't have everything in it. Not using animal products doesn't mean that I don't want to try out these amazing flavour combinations, you know? My goal is to make MoFo '11 all about veganizing some of my faves, but in the meantime, I'll do a couple here and there for fun.

So the recipe is Wholesome Carrot Bran Brunch Cake from Food & Drink magazine. It's pretty dense and moist, not unlike a proper carrot / bran muffin. The icing adds just a hint of sweetness, as the cake itself is actually not overly sweet, but it's probably not entirely necessary if you're watching your lovely figure. I'm loving this, even though there are so many steps, as it is one tasty cake, and it kind of feels healthy what with that whole wheat flour, bran, and grated carrot, you know?

So here goes...

3c grated carrot
1/2c raisins, plumped by submersing in boiling water if too dry
1/2c almonds plain almonds, chopped and toasted*
1 can (398ml) pineapple pieces, drained, juice reserved (mash the pineapple with the back of a wooden spoon into your sieve to get as much juice out as possible)
1c non dairy milk mixed with 1tsp apple cider vinegar, left to curdle
2 tbsp ground flax seed
8oz (1/2 pack) extra firm silken tofu (Mori-Nu)
2/3c vegetable oil
1/4c yogurt - I used vanilla Yoso because I find it impossible to find plain!
2tsp vanilla
1c brown sugar
3c whole wheat flour
1 1/2c wheat bran
2tbsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
1tsp salt
1 1/2tsp cinnamon
1tsp cardamom
1/2tsp allspice
1tsp ground ginger

*Toasting nuts: you can pop 'em in your preheated oven for about 6 minutes, stirring in the middle or you can toast them in a dry frying pan on the stove for around the same amount of time, tossing every couple of minutes.

1/4c pineapple juice
2 1/2c sugar

1. Preheat your oven to 350F. Put your rack in the bottom 3rd of the oven. Also, grease a bundt pan. Although I usually wait to grease because I use spray and if you spray too much in advance, you run the risk of a puddle of oil sitting in the bottom - gross. Either way, don't forget to do it!

2. Get out the food processor or blender. Blend the tofu with the oil. If it's not blending nice and smoothly (mine didn't), add a tablespoon or two of the reserved pineapple juice. Scrape down the sides of the blender, add the yogurt, and blend till creamy. Add the flax to the milk mixture and whisk together for a minute or two.

3. Transfer the tofu and milk mixtures to a bowl; add 1/4c of the reserved pineapple juice, the vanilla, and the brown sugar. Beat until well combined.

4. Put all the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together. Make a well in the centre; pour in the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Add the nuts, raisins, and pineapple and stir. Sprinkle on the carrot and give a final stir until everything is mixed in good and proper.

5. If you didn't spray / grease your pan back in step 1, do so now. Put your cake batter in the pan and even it out with a spoon - it's super thick and will not spread evenly on it's own in the oven. Bake for an hour to an hour and ten minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool 10 or 15 minutes. You may have to use a thin knife around the inside of the pan to get it to come out, or if you're lucky like me, you may not, but either way get it outta there and let it cool on a rack the rest of the way before glazing.

6. Glaze: whisk together the sugar and juice, adding more juice if necessary. You want to be able to pour it onto the cake but you don't want it to be runny, so be careful! Then go ahead and glop it on the cooled cake, slice with a serrated knife, and serve!

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