Vegan baking has been made loads easier since the publishing of Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. I myself am not a vegan, but the goodies that have come from my oven with the “vegan seal of approval” have been mighty tasty.
Why vegan? On Tuesday I was asked to bake a cake for the birthday of a dear friend who happens to be lactose-intolerant. Dairy is most easily avoided via vegan baking, so this week I’m recipe testing to expand my list of vegan cake flavors. Substitutions work: soy milk for whole, butter for margarine… but to me, it’s less fuss to go vegan rather than to go grocery shopping. Today’s recipe is for moist, spicy carrot cake cupcakes. They taste warm and cozy, like snuggling under a thick blanket sipping cocoa beside the fire place on a chilly winter evening. The texture is muffin-like and topped with fondant flowerpots, it’s like having springtime in September. You want that, don’t you? I know I do.
* Note: Unless you’re a vegan, I’d steer clear of the vegan frosting. It leaves an unappetizing greasy film on the tongue. Therefore, I’ve added my favorite dairy-friendly cream cheese frosting below (smile!)
Adapted from Vegetarian Times Magazine, Feb. 2009.
Yields 10 cupcakes
1 very ripe banana, cut into chunks
1 1/2c. grated carrots
2/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. oil
1 1/4 c. flour
1T. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. ginger
1/4 t. cloves
1. Preheat to 350F. Line or grease pan for 10 muffins.
2. Place banana, sugar, and oil in bowl. Beat 1 minute or until it gets a little fluffier.
3. Add carrots and then sift in the dry ingredients. Stir to combine and fill muffin cups 3/4 full with batter.
4. Bake 20-22 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool.
adapted from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World
Yields 4 cups
1/2 c. shortening
1/2 c. dairy-free margarine
3-3 1/2c. powdered sugar, sifted
2 t. vanilla extract
1 t. orange extract
Beat shortening and margarine 3 minutes. Add sugar and beat an additional 5 minutes. Spoon in the flavorings, beat 1 minute and frost.
Orange-Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting
1c. stick butter
8 oz. cream cheese
2-2 1/2 c. powdered sugar, sifted
2 t. vanilla extract
1t. orange extract
Beat butter, cheese and extracts together. Pour in sugar and beat until fluffy and smooth. Frost and enjoy!