This choco-cake with ancho chili powder was delicious and had the perfect kick to it. Thin and light, I could have eaten the whole thing in one sitting (a crime I’m infamous for committing – next week we can all learn moderation together, this week? We eat whole cakes for breakfast, and we ain’t scurred).
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
½ cup cocoa powder
¾ teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup soy milk
½ cup maple syrup
½ cup safflower oil (I used vegetable oil because it’s all I had in the pantry, whoops!)
¼ cup unrefined sugar
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup soy milk
½ cup maple syrup
1 ½ cups vegan semisweet chocolate chips.
When I cook, I like to get a couple of things straight in the kitchen first.
I mean the dishes, the counter, no grocery bags hangin’ on the floor or table with no purpose – things must be orderly, or I go bananas (and not in the way that results in a dessert bread ; )
Next, I like to pull each of the ingredients that will be used in the recipe (as pictured above) – and if I’m really feeling Martha Stewart-y (and I pretty much always am) I even pre-measure them in my fancy kitchenware and put the giant bags of stuff back in their respective living quarters so all I have to do is dump and mix when the time comes.
The following instructions listed below come directly from the Candle*79 cookbook:
Makes two 9-inch cakes or 12 cupcakes
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Brush two 9-inch round cake pans with safflower oil and set aside. If making cupcakes, brush a 12-cup muffin pan with safflower oil or line with cupcake papers.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, ancho powder, and baking soda and mix well.
In a separate bowl, combine the soy milk, maple syrup, safflower oil, sugar, and vinegar and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans and bake for 35 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans on wire racks.
Now, if you’re like me baking makes you hungry. You know what they say about going to the grocery store when you’re hungry. (For those of you who don’t, they say don’t do it). Well the same applies to your baking. Don’t bake a two layer chocolate cake and wait hungrily for it to finish and then make yourself a salad for dinner (or lunch or breakfast or whatever). Why? Because once the cake is finished the thought will arise: “I don’t really need to make dinner, I have this whole cake I can eat.” So trust me, take a snack break and eat something healthy. This way, your reasonably sized slice of delicious chocolate cake will satiate your sweet tooth without sending you over the edge. And your body will thank you.
I made this salad pictured below. It was yummy. With massaged kale, brown rice and dill. And guess what? I only had 5 PIECES OF CAKE ANYWAY BECAUSE I HAVE A PROBLEM:
Now where were we? Oh right, the sauce!
Meanwhile, to make the sauce, heat the soy milk in a saucepan over medium heat until very warm but not boiling. Transfer to a blender. Add the maple syrup and chocolate chips and blend until smooth.
Cut the cakes into wedges, drizzle with sauce, and serve.
A note from yours truly: the cake was a bit thinner than I expected, and so I decided to layer them for extra thickness. Something you should know about me. I am extremely detail oriented and wildly perfectionist (to a flaw) EXCEPT… when I’m not. And that usually happens at random, for no good reason, usually out of laziness (a moment as I let the shame sink in). So, alas. Because I cooked these in a friend’s kitchen, using friend’s pans, I didn’t really bother to check the size of the cake pan. Soooo, there’s a good chance those pans were bigger than 9” which would explain a lot. Meaning, I hardly blame the recipe for flat cakes, delicious as they were, I can only blame myself for their consistency and shape. But this is part of the fun of experimental baking. When you were a kid and you accidentally drew with the red marker instead of the yellow (doh! How could you?!) you didn’t punish yourself – you rolled with it. So I encourage you to do the same.