Hey. Amid working on my zine, avoiding reading, breakdowns, and boring salad after boring salad, I did bake something I wanted to share with you guys. I've been pretty good with the sugar intake lately but one night G and I both really just wanted something sweet. I hadn't planned on baking beforehand, so I just worked with what I had on hand and with a few ingredients I wanted to get into.
I had purchased almond meal from Trader Joe's (I always write Trader Hoe's..which makes me laugh) a loooong time ago with hopes of linzer cookies and perhaps some Almond-Apricot cupcakes from VCTOTW (been a long time since I mentioned that acronym) and those might still be in the works but my first instinct is always chocolate. I did want to keep with the low, naturally sweetened baking and always, always, lower fat - which is great because chocolate is so forgiving. I worked around the chocolate cake recipe in The Joy of Vegan Baking and here it is with my adaptations:
Healthy Chocolate Cake
1 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 c. almond meal
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c. cocoa powder
1/2 oz. (1 large square) 100% cocoa, melted (this is what I used)
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 TBS. canola oil
1 TBS white distilled vinegar
3 mejdool dates, pitted and mashed well
1/2 c. agave syrup
3/4 c. cold water
-Preheat oven to 350. Lightly oil, or line with parchment paper, an 8 or 9 inch cake pan.
-Sift dry ingredients together. Create a well in the center and add wet ingredients in. Mix until just incorporated. It may be a little lumpy, but that's okay.
-Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
-Cool on a wire rack and top with fresh fruit or powdered sugar, if desired. I ate it plain.
This is such an easy recipe. It's definitely not super sweet but the dates make little appearances in a bite that are moist and delicious. Sarahfae wrote about how to make date paste and use it on her Addicted to Veggies blog here. I only read this post after making the cake - I simply chopped up a bunch of dates and sprinkled them into the batter. I'd also like to try another variation with almond extract as well as vanilla. Almond meal makes the cake very moist but doesn't impart much flavor. Anyway, let me know how you guys enjoy it, if you do try it.
I also finally made a Sarah Kramer calendar recipe after eschewing her previous two months' recipes. March is a recipe for Sassy Sandwich Bread, which I can totally get down with, especially when the band rep for the month is the Beastie Boys or, as she depicts them, the Yeastie Boys.
More baking stuff-wise, I interviewed (tried out?) for a job as a vegan pastry assistant, which was a huge step in itself in me actually leaving the house and doing what I said I would. I might have screwed up here and there but it sounds like an awesome job...I'll let you know if it works out.
Another reason I haven't posted so much of late is that G and I have been busy planning another dinner party for his dad - it's tonight so I'm gonna go run to start prepping and cleaning and FREAKING OUT AHHHH jk jk