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Friday, March 21, 2014

Happy Vegan Vanilla Birthday Cake to me :)

 

Every birthday is another opportunity for change. Not sure what one I will make this year, but it has to be good. I need another week to regroup. But for now, I will have cake, and a vegan one at that.

My favorite cake is carrot, but I just made that in the beginning of the week so I decided to go with standard vanilla this time around. I had some pink and black icing in my fridge so, even though I hate pink, I need to use it up. I am posting the recipe along with the pics. Everyone could use a good vegan vanilla cake recipe in their stash and I love to share.

THE CAKE

2 c. all purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp salt.

2 egg replacer equivalents ( 3 tsp cornstarch plus 4 tbsp. of water, or 3 tsp ener-g egg replace plus 4T of water, mixed and set aside)

2 c. ricemilk, or soy milk
3 tsp. apple cider vinegar

1 1/2 c. sugar
1/3 c. veg oil
1/3 c. of vegan butter, softened (I use earth balance)
1 Tbsp of vanilla

THE FROSTING
1/2 c. vegan butter
1/2 c. veg shortening
1 tsp clear vanilla extract
4 c. confectioner's sugar, sifted
2-4 tbsp. water or non-dairy milk

INSTRUCTIONS:

The Cake
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Grease 2  8-inch pans, or 3 6-inch round pans and flour, and set aside.
3. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and set aside.
4. Mix together the milk and vinegar and set aside for about 5 min.
5. Cream together the sugar, oil, butter and vanilla.
6. Add the egg replacer mix and blend well.
7. Add the milk mixture and mix at high speed. You will notice the mix looks kind of "frothy". This is ok and what it is supposed to look like.
8. Now slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until completed blended, about 2 minutes more.
9. Spread evenly in pans and bake 30-40 min depending on your oven. Cake is done when toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Remove cakes from pans and cool for 5 minutes, then turn onto cooling racks and let cool completely before icing.

You may or may not have to torte the cakes before stacking and icing. With vegan cakes, there is generally very little doming that occurs so you may not have to torte them at all.

Ice and decorate as desired.


The Frosting

Vegan Buttercream Frosting

Cream together the butter and shortening. Add the vanilla and beat until well mixed. Slowly add the confectioners sugar until well blended. Icing will be stiff. Add in 2 tbsp. of water. Add additional water, 1 tbsp. at a time until desired consistency is reached. I prefer my icing to be on the medium stiff side (this means when I put my spatula in straight up it will lean slightly in the icing.)


Oklahoma cake creation (despite the emergency)




Well what an interesting week I have had. My latest creation below was for our local middle school cast party. The drama mamas asked me weeks ago to do this cake for them since I did the cake for Aladdin last year and we all had so much fun. I must say, Oklahoma! was a challenge. It is not sparkly and glitzy like Disney movies. It definitely put my creative energies to the test. But none the less, I scoured the internet for ideas (which there were none for this musical by the way), and came up with a plan. I made the cake decorations during a week that I was at training for work. It was something to do on those lonely nights in my room.


Nothing says Oklahoma like western gear, so I whipped up some cowboy hats, horseshoes, little horsey heads, bandanas and a pair of cowboy boots.  I made them all from fondant and set them out to dry during the week I was away. I put the finishing touches on them when I got home - sparkly stuff for the blue hats and horseshoes, and bandana designs on the bandanas.

As the party date of March 15th approached I was in full swing making icing, rice crispie treats for the hay bales the large hat in the center of the cake. The music notes and the Oklahoma sign I cut on my Pazzles Inspiration cutter, and cutting out fondant fence posts by hand. Friday night I completed the big hat and let it dry overnight.




Saturday morning I woke up bright eyed and bushytailed ready to finish the cake that morning to deliver that evening to the party of about 70 people. Oh what fun awaited me! I dirty iced, I smooth iced. I laid out my pieces and my plan for the cake design. Hay bales, hats, boots, fence, check check check.





And then at 11:15a came the scream from upstairs "HONEY GET YOUR KEYS WE NEED TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL NOW!!!!" So me, being me in deco mode, didn't really pay heed to the first cry for help. :( Bad wife. The second yell, "HONNEEYYYYYYY!!!" Up the stairs I ran to find my daughter running the other way from the kitchen in hysterics and to my right, an old faithful fountain of blood spewing from my husband's hand. He was removing a window and the ladder gave way and he went down, putting his hand through the glass window and slicing open his index finger.

A moment of pause.

Ok so, in this moment, the first thing I did was call 911, my sister-in-law thankfully was in town for awhile and she helped get the leather glove off (which by the way saved him from losing his finger we are convinced) and wrapped him tightly in my good towel (which I will never see again..lol), and waited outside for the medics. I on the other hand began to ponder my dilemma. Cake or ER, cake or ER, what to do what to do. Any good wife would have rushed to her husband's rescue and flown to the ER behind the ambulance. Alas, I am not a good wife. I only had an hour left before finishing the cake. 70 people were waiting for it that night. I knew the ER visit would last well into the time past the start of the party. We discussed the issue. Since my sister in law was in town with us, she went to the ER with my daughter, and I stayed behind to finish the cake. We did not arrive at that decision lightly and had I not had her with us, I would have abandoned the cake, I really would have. Or if his injury were life threatening I would have abandoned the cake. So I did stay and finish with pangs of guilt. But I was done in an hour, and a 15 minute ride to the hospital, I found them in the ER, hand wrapped up and waiting for doctors. So it all worked out thankfully. I never want to do that again. And all I can say is thank goodness for getting most of my work done ahead of time which made the whole experience much less traumatic. And thank goodness my sister in law was here to help us. And as it turned out, I did leave in the middle to bring my kids home because they were exhausted, and delivered the cake and ran back to the hospital again. It was a long day. But they loved the cake, it was a success even though it was partially unfinished (in my mind, I did not get to add the rope border around the cake like I had planned).  I do have bloody, gorey pictures of the hospital junk but I will spare you all. He had surgery this morning and they repaired the tendon in his finger that he sliced, and the artery and removed more glass. The surgeon was very pleased and expects that he will regain almost full use, if not complete use, of his finger.

So, let's just stick to the cute cake, shall we?