rants & recipes

Archive for the ‘chocolate’ Category

Vegan S’mores

Posted by trktos on 29-January-2011

I’ve had this bag of Dandies vegan marshmallows for a while and haven’t really known what to do with them so today, I decided “s’mores”.

Review of Dandies – they are pretty good … not as good as those whatever-brand, marketed as vegan but with the fish gelatin but there’s something to be said for not containing gelatinous lumps of fish. Just plain, they were a little heavy, a little grainy but overall, good. They puff up in the microwave, melt and get rather gooey, too. And they have the classic marshmallow flavor.

So, anyway – s’mores … means making graham crackers. I used this recipe, though I halved the cinnamon (really glad I did that) and added about a teaspoon of vanilla. They didn’t turn out to be the best graham crackers I’ve ever had, but they were ok. Next time, I’ll roll thinner and poke more air holes though I definitely prefer the thicker cookie-likeness of these, for s’mores, compared to the brittle store-bought ones (even if I could easily find them without honey).

Starting store-bought  ingredients:

Two mostly-assembled s’mores, ready for the microwave:

Fully-assembled s’more ready for the eating:

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German Chocolate Cake

Posted by trktos on 23-January-2011

Weird thing, before I became vegan, I was never really crazy about German Chocolate Cake … while I love coconut flavor, I’m not a big fan of dried coconut but lately, I’ve found myself wanting German Chocolate Cake with Coconut-Pecan frosting for some odd reason.

A few months ago, there didn’t seem to be that much, out there, for already-veganized coconut-pecan frosting but a few blogs seem to have caught up with my cravings and saved me much experimenting it the kitchen. I don’t know why I didn’t see this post from FatFreeVegan until today … and a few days ago, there was a similar post from Meet the Shannons.

So today, a birthday-observed-cake … I halved the frosting recipe from FatFreeVegan and halved the “Crazy Cake” recipe from the link provided in that post.

My plan was to cook a single layer, cut it in half, and have half of a two layer cake. This cake, however, was really tender. I could probably have let it cook another 5 minutes. Oh yeah, and letting it cool, no doubt, would have helped too. I gave up on that idea, though, and just frosted it as a single layer. This frosting is really thick … if making a double-layer cake, I would double the frosting (which would be a perfect amount for frosting two tops) and not frost the sides. If you want to frost the sides, maybe make 2.5 times this recipe?

German Chocolate Cake

Ingredients, for a single layer cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour (180 grams)
  • 1 cup sugar (I used about 170 grams, plus I added maybe 2 tbsp brown sugar)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup cocoa (I used 45 grams – a 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp instant expresso powder
  • 3/8 cup oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 cup water


  1. Grease and parchment a 9″ cake pan.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Mix all dry ingredients together.
  4. Mix wet ingredients.
  5. Combine wet and dry ingredients until thoroughly combined.
  6. Spread batter into cake pan.
  7. Bake 30 – 35 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven, cool in pan 10 minutes.
  9. Remove to rack to cool completely.

Coconut-Pecan Frosting

Ingredients, enough to frost top of single 9″ layer:

  • 1/2 cup soymilk
  • 3 tbsp coconut milk
  • 1/2 + 1/8 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch, mixed with 1/8 cup water (2 tbsp cornstarch would probably suffice – this is pretty thick.)
  • 1 1/4 cups coconut
  • 1 cup chopped pecans


  1. Combine soymilk, coconut milk, sugar and vanilla in a small sauce pan.
  2. Add cornstarch.
  3. Bring to a “boil” … “boil” because even though the original instructions said to boil for one minute, my mixture never really boiled. Luckily, I noticed it was getting thick, on the bottom, and removed the pan in time, to whisk it all back in. (Tilt the pan, so you can see the bottom and whisk constantly.)
  4. Once thickened, turn off  heat and stir in coconut and pecans.

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Chocolate Chai Spice Cake

Posted by trktos on 25-December-2010

Baked this cake for a work potluck recently … second time I’ve made it, it turned out well both times. Though, most recently, I used whole wheat spelt because that’s what I had on hand … next time, I’ll go for white spelt.

I actually made 1.5 times this recipe and baked 3 layers. The third layer turned out a little smaller (It’s hard to measure out batter equally between 2 pans, much less 3!) but the 2 larger layers rose really well and tall, with a little more batter.

I learned two things, baking this cake. One – if you want a layer cake but that’s too much cake – bake one layer, slice it in half, and you can have half of a layer cake. Two – you can’t add extra fat to a frosting recipe and expect it not to be lumpy. I should have emptied my mixer, creamed the extra fat and then started adding the already-made-but-too-sweet-frosting back in.


  • 3 cups spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 cups soymilk
  • 4 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup apple vinegar
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, optional
  • Chai Frosting, see below


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Oil, parchment and dust 2 9-inch cakes pans with cocoa.
  3. Mix dry ingredients, including sugar.
  4. Mix oil, applesauce, soymilk and vanilla.
  5. Combine wet and dry ingredients in barely mixed.
  6. Add vinegar and stir until batter is smooth and vinegar is incorporated.
  7. Fold in chocolate chips, if using.
  8. Bake 25-30 minutes or until cake tests done.
  9. Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then remove to racks. Frost when cooled.


Chai Frosting


  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup soymilk
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp cardomom
  • pinch salt


  1. Cream fat.
  2. Add in powdered sugar, cornstarch, spices alternately with soymilk.


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An Army of Vegan Turtles

Posted by trktos on 5-December-2010

Last night, I tried this recipe for caramel. It turned out really well. This morning, I toasted some pecans, melted some of the caramel, melted some vegan chocolate chips and made turtles.

Turtles without their shells:

Turtles with their shells:


Caramel (from this post):


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegan margarine
  • 2 cups ‘milk (I used plain, unsweetened soymilk)
  • 1 cup corn syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla


  1. Grease an 8*8 pan and line with parchment.
  2. Combine all ingredients except vanilla in 4+ quart pot. (I used a 4 quart and it just was big enough.)
  3. Heat, stirring frequently, until candy reaches 245 degrees F.
  4. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.
  5. Pour into prepared pan.
  6. Once cool, you can use in other recipes or cut into bite-sized pieces. Be sure to wrap them, though – this caramel glues itself to pretty much everything it touches, except cling wrap and parchment paper.

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Mayo Cake!

Posted by trktos on 6-September-2010

I finally got around to using my new bundt pan. I’ve had the thing for nearly two years … it might not qualify as new anymore.

Whipped up this chocolate cake – no one would ever guess its made with mayonnaise (vegan, of course).

Glazed with “chocolate sour cream glaze”, pretty much the same as the linked glaze recipe, except replacing the vegan cream cheese with vegan sour cream.

(1st photo by Evin)

The bad thing about thicker glazes is they don’t pour over a cake very nicely. The good part, however, is they don’t glaze the plate!

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