Friday, January 25, 2013

Vegan Chocolate Cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting

"Friday Night Dessert Night" is a family tradition around here. We don't allow ourselves to eat sweets during the week, but we let loose and indulge on Friday nights.

This Chocolate Cake Recipe is our new favorite.  The Vegan Zombie invented it, and it has to be the easiest chocolate cake recipe I've ever made. Even if you don't consider yourself vegan, this recipe is great--it doesn't use eggs or milk, so it's easy to make if you're running low on groceries but still need a chocolate fix. And trust me, it doesn't taste like it's missing eggs or milk.

I made this cake for my son's 4th birthday. I made it with peanut butter frosting, and wow was it rich!

Tonight I altered the coconut pecan frosting recipe from Better Homes and Gardens to make a vegan version that turned out pretty delicious! Here's the way I made it:

Vegan Coconut Pecan Frosting:

1 egg replacer (I used the  Ener-G brand.)
2/3 cup almond milk (or other milk substitute)
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance brand.)
1 1/3 cup flaked coconut (I prefer the unsweetened kind. I can't find a sweetened variety that doesn't have "sodium metabisulfite" as an ingredient. Somehow that just doesn't sound like something I'd like to put in my body.)
1/2 cup chopped pecans.

In a medium saucepan whisk the egg replacer until frothy. Stir in almond milk, sugar, and margarine. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut and pecans. Cover and cool completely before frosting cake.

I wish I took a picture of this cake. But it's practically gone. Maybe next time I'll be able to get some photos of it before my family inhales it! (That's wishful thinking...)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Still Here

I'm still here, but very busy. Let's see, in the past month, here's what's happened (plus some other stuff I'm sure I forgot):

1. Honey's uncle passed away shortly before Christmas. We made an out-of-state road trip to attend his funeral.

2. Our oldest daughter got a second, temporary job at the college bookstore. She's been overwhelmed, seeing that she's taking 18 hours this semester, plus attending her first job. The bookstore job is winding down though, so hopefully she can de-stress a bit.

3. Honey started the MBA program, and he got elected to be the SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) club vice president at his university. He is also studying for the PHR (Professional Human Resource) exam, plus he needs to get his GMAT score up for applications to a PhD program.

4. We are feeling really good following a vegan diet. Honey has lost 10 pounds, and I've lost 8.

5. Our older boy is almost on the cusp of beginning to read. I think that's pretty amazing, since he just turned 4 earlier this month. (I made a vegan chocolate Batman cake, and even though it looked bizarre, it was soooo scrumptious! I'll try to remember to post the recipe soon.) Anyway, our son is starting to associate letters with sounds, and he's trying to sound out words. I can almost see the light bulb flickering above his head! He also learned to write his name, which he's very proud of!

6. Our younger boy is potty training. That adventure in and of itself would be enough to keep me from updating this blog. I always read that kids with his kidney issues are hard to potty train. Miracle of miracles, though, he has been easy to bladder train. Bowel training is another matter...let's not go there!

7. Our computer died. It was 7+ years old, and it just couldn't go on any longer. We sucked up the funds to get a new one. So far I like it. But Windows 8 is a whole lot different than XP, (I told you it was an old computer!) so things are not where I remember them to be.

8. Honey and I decided that our family will try two new veggies each month. Tonight we ate parsnips, and they were yummy! I mashed them with some potatoes, and they were a hit. Next up: kohlrabi! I don't know if our local produce department actually sells 24 veggies we've never eaten before, so we'll see how long it lasts. It will be fun to try new foods and recipes during the adventure.

9. I started  a 12 week walk/run program. I am only into the third week, but I am feeling really good.  Here's the plan, if you're interested: (My apologies to the person who owns this graphic: my daughter found it on Pinterest. If you are the owner, please let me know so I can give you proper credit.)