Berry Coffee Cake

berry coffee cake

berry coffee cake

Who doesn’t like coffee cake? It’s good for breakfast, snack, dessert; basically whenever you’d drink coffee. But I was craving a coffee cake with a little difference. The recipe I found included blueberries, but my inspiration took me to add assorted berries for color and flavor. The batter turned a swirling purple color that I enjoyed. Don’t be scared; it gets muted during baking.

The recipe I looked to wasn’t vegan so I got the opportunity to try a different egg substitute – the chia egg. It’s made by adding ground chia seeds to warm water and letting it sit for 10-20 minutes to thicken. The result is gummier than flax eggs, so I can see recipes where it would be a problem but not this one. More substitutes were swapping butter and yogurt for non-dairy versions. For high altitude I reduced the baking powder and added non-dairy milk. So, grab a cuppa joe and dig in.

Berry Coffee Cake adapted from Blueberry Coffee Cake
2 TBS ground chia seeds whisked with 6 TBS warm water
2 TBS plus 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour, divided
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 TBS vegan margarine, cut into small pieces
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup vegan sugar
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup non-dairy plain yogurt
1/2 cup non-dairy blueberry yogurt
1 TBS non-dairy milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups fresh or frozen, thawed and drained blueberries, divided
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8×8” cake pan. Prepare chia eggs by whisking ground chia seeds into a bowl of warm water. Set aside to gel. Put 2 TBS whole wheat pastry flour, brown sugar, margarine, cinnamon and cardamom in a bowl and mix together with a fork until well combined and mixture is in large clumps; set this streusel aside.
Put remaining 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour, all purpose flour, vegan sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine. In a bowl, whisk together yogurts, vanilla and chia eggs then pour into bowl with dry ingredients and stir until combined. Gently fold in 1 cup berries. Spoon batter into pan and sprinkle streusel over top. Scatter remaining 1 cup berries over streusel and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes. Once cooled, loosen edges of cake and transfer to a plate.

Until next time, happy baking!

Superfood Energy Bites

energy bitesAnother hot day, another no-bake recipe. Besides making a tasty treat without turning on the oven, I wanted something that my athletic husband could take on the go. I added superfoods for quality energy along with coffee and chocolate for a mocha tasting breakfast bite. Healthy mocha goodness was a good choice because they are yummy enough for dessert.

I have been collecting “energy balls” recipes for years, so this is an amalgamation of all of them with no nod to a particular author. I did choose ingredients that would not require refrigeration to make them an easy, anywhere snack. And, of course, there was no baking involved so no consideration was taken for high altitude.

Superfood Energy Bites
10 large, soft dates, pitted
1 cup unsalted, raw almonds
2 TBS Navitas Naturals cacao nibs
Dash salt
1/4 cup Navitas Naturals dried mulberries
2 tsp Navitas Naturals cocoa powder
¼ tsp coffee extract
Soak dates in warm water for 5-10 minutes, depending on the dryness of the dates. Save the date soaking water. Grind almonds and cacao nibs to a coarse powder in a food processor. Add salt, mulberries, and cocoa powder and pulse a few times. Add dates in batches. Add coffee extract. Squeeze mixture into balls. If too dry to form balls, then add a bit of the saved date water. Store in an airtight container. Will keep for one week.

Until next time, happy non-baking!

Note: I do not make any money by mentioning products by Navitas Naturals – I just like them.

Coffee Shop Coffee Cake

coffee shop coffee cake

So, donuts. I was going to make donuts but I had no luck. I first tried to bake them years ago in the special donut pan I bought for the occasion. They were a dense disaster and I gave away the pan to another sucker. When I recently approached the idea of making donuts I was more optimistic as I had found a recipe for donut holes. Okay, I can do this, I thought. But no, massive failure again. Hence today’s post on coffee cake. I’ll save donuts for another day when the frustration dies down.

I had never made coffee cake before but I figured I’d give it a go. I’d also never baked with gluten-free flour, but I decided to attempt that as well. I’ll just say that gluten-free baking is also something I’ll save for another day. However, the coffee cake was a success and it smelled great while it baked.

For the coffee cake, I based it on several recipes. I used the cake portion of the gluten-free recipe I tried and combined it with different topping and filling ideas. Some changes were to sour the milk with the apple cider vinegar first – this makes a “buttermilk” that works as a leavener in vegan baking. For high altitude I reduced the baking powder and increased the flour. And because I love cinnamon and wanted a delicious filling, I used a smaller cake pan so I could layer cake and filling and then cake and topping.

Coffee Shop Coffee Cake by The Decadent Vegan Baker
topping
1/2 cup organic sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 TBS ground cinnamon
3 TBS vegan margarine, melted
filling
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
cake
3/4 cup + 1 tsp soymilk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup organic sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 TBS canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9″ round cake pan with parchment paper and lightly grease the paper. Start the cake by stirring together the milk and vinegar. Let it sit for 10 minutes. Make the topping by whisking together the sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Add the melted margarine and stir with a fork until well combined. Make the filling by mixing together the brown sugar and cinnamon. Finish the cake by sifting together the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the sugar. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the soured milk, applesauce, oil and vanilla. Add the flour mixture and mix until combined.
Pour half of the cake batter into the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle the filling evenly over the batter. Spread the remaining batter over the filling. Use a knife to gently swirl the filling through the batter. Crumble the topping over the batter. Bake until it’s dark golden brown around the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 33-35 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool for 15-20 minutes before serving.

Until next time, happy baking!

Chocolate Coffee Cupcakes with Coffee Buttercream Frosting

chocolate coffee cupcakeA chocolate cupcake is a thing of beauty. This baking challenge is an adaptation of Your Basic Chocolate Cupcake from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World by the girls at The Post Punk Kitchen. For fun I used coffee extract for the additional extract and added coffee extract to the frosting to ramp up the mocha-ness.

They turned out well with good texture, slight dimples and a not-to-sweet flavor. The cupcakes screamed for a mound of delicious frosting so I slathered a coffee Vegan Fluffy Buttercream on top. Good enough for breakfast.

Chocolate Coffee Cupcakes with Coffee Buttercream Frosting
cupcakes
1 cup vanilla soy or almond milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup organic sugar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp coffee extract
1 cup + 1 TBS all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
generous 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
frosting
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated shortening
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated margarine
3 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar, sifted if clumpy
1 tsp coffee extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup vanilla soy milk
For Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350F and line a 12-cupcake pan with paper liners. Whisk together the milk and vinegar in a large bowl, and set aside for a few minutes to curdle. Add the sugar, oil, vanilla extract, and coffee extract to the milk mixture and beat until foamy.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add in two batches to wet ingredients and beat just until no large lumps remain. Pour evenly into the liners, filling three-quarters of the way. Bake 18-19 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely.
For Frosting: Beat the shortening and margarine together until well combined and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat for 3 more minutes. Add the vanilla and soy milk and beat for another 5-7 minutes until fluffy.

Until next time, happy baking!

Midnight Chocolate Cake

midnight chocolate cake w berriesA friend approached me with a family recipe. She told me that her mom would make it for her on her birthday, but now she was at high altitude and wanted it adjusted for her next birthday. I took on the challenge, making it vegan as well. When my friend took a bite she smiled and said it tasted just like the cake she remembered. The ultimate compliment.

Midnight Chocolate Cake adapted from Kerry’s family recipe
Shortening, to grease pan
2 1/4 cups + 1 TBS boiling water
1 cup cocoa powder (packed tightly) + extra to dust pan
1 TBS instant coffee
1 cup margarine (at room temperature)
2 1/4 cups + 1 TBS vegan cane sugar
1 cup pureed silken tofu
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp salt
1 3/4 tsp baking soda
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
Powdered sugar, for decoration
Preheat oven to 350F. Use shortening to grease a bundt pan and then dust with cocoa powder. Set aside. Mix boiling water with cocoa powder and instant coffee and whisk well. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
Cream together margarine, sugar and tofu. Sift together flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Alternate adding cupfuls of dry ingredients then cocoa liquid to creamed margarine mixture. Scrape down sides. Add vanilla and beat until fluffy.
Pour batter into prepared bundt pan. Bake for 60-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. Unmold and dust with powdered sugar.

Until next time, happy baking!