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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recipe: Hot Fudge Sundae Cake (Vegan)

I know this picture doesn't make it look like the most appetizing thing in the world, but if you look at it knowing that it's a "molten" style cake, I think it looks a lot more appealing. I don't really like chocolate, but I even thought this cake was pretty delicious. It's from a vegan cookbook called "More Great Good Dairy-Free Desserts" by Fran Costigan. This is only the second recipe I've tried from this cookbook, so I don't yet feel I could recommend it (or not), but the other recipe I tried was a little strange. Edible, and sort of good, but just a little... off. Anyway, here's this one (that was very, very good).

Hot Fudge Sundae Cake:

1 cup cake flour (the original recipe calls for 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour and 1/2 cup unbleached white flour. I just used 1 cup cake flour - because I was too lazy - and because who wants whole wheat in their delicious cake?!)
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar, divided
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa, divided
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup soy or rice milk alternative
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350.

Oil a 2 - 2 1/2 quart baking dish that is at least 3" deep (a classic oval corningware dish worked great for me. Also, I have never "oiled" a baking dish before - I always butter/flour - so I wasn't overly sure on this one. I used canola oil, since it's also used in the recipe - and just made sure to coat all the sides. It's easy to soak up the excess oil afterwards with a paper towel, much like oiling a dutch oven before using.)

In a large bowl, strain together the flour, 3/4 cup of the sugar, 1/4 cup of the cocoa, the baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt (I actually didn't strain them, because I was feeling very lazy. I added them and used a whisk to combine them and mix evenly. It seems to have worked out just fine).

In a separate small bowl, combine the oil, milk alternative, and vanilla with a whisk until well mixed. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until batter is smooth (I just continued to use the same whisk).

Pour the batter into the oiled pan (make sure there isn't any excess oil in the bottom of the pan). In a separate small bowl, combine the remaining 1 cup sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa, and sprinkle the mixture evenly over the top of the batter. Then (seriously) pour the boiling water over the top of the whole thing. It kind of mixed around into it when I poured it on (it won't just stay on top), but that's fine.

Bake for 25 minutes. You can't really test if the cake is done, as it will "look" set, but will still be really loose. The original instructions say the sauce should bubble up through the top, but that didn't happen with mine. I gauged doneness by the edges - when they looked finished but not burnt, I took it out. Let it set for 15 minutes in the pan before serving.

The top of the cake is the actual cake part - and it kind of hovers over the liquid "sauce" underneath it. Serve pieces of the cake on plates, and then pour several spoonfuls of the sauce over the top of the cake. I found that letting it soak a bit in the sauce made it even better.

Super easy cake, and super good! The original recipe says it serves 6-10. I guess we're much more gluttonous consumers - I'd say 6-8 servings, tops (because, really, if you're going to eat delicious chocolate cake, who can possible be satisfied with a small portion?).

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