Vegan 3 Leches Cake

 

About a year ago I'd heard that there were vegan (coconut-based) versions of condensed and evaporated milk on the market. I couldn't find them locally and briefly tried making them myself in my slowcooker with soymilk, with little success.

A few weeks ago I stumbled upon soy condensed and evaporated milk at my local H.E.B. in Austin and grabbed one of each. The only thing I really know that calls for these items is 3 leches cake and thai iced tea so I decided to try my hand at the former. 

Below, I combined recipes from the following sites:

https://yupitsvegan.com/vegan-tres-leches-cake/

https://www.ordinaryvegan.net/tres-leches/

 

I made the cake from the first website, using:

1 cup plain, unsweetened soymilk

2 tsp apple cider vinegar 

1.5 c all purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/3 cup vegetable oil (I used canola)

2/3 cup sugar

1 Tb vanilla extract

1/2 tsp almond extract

First combine the vinegar and soymilk so it curdles. Set aside.

Then combine the dry ingredients. Add the oil, sugar and extracts to the milk and then add the wet and dry ingredients.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 - 25 minutes (mine took about 23 minutes in a round, 8-inch pie pan).

Let cool for at least an hour. Then, with a toothpick, poke holes all around the cake and pour in the leches mixture, consisting of:

1/2 cup condensed milk

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1/2 cup coconut milk

I suppose if you're using coconut condensed/evaporated milk then you can sub almond or soy for the additional 1/2 cup of coconut milk. I wanted to get some coconut flavor in there since I was using soy condensed/evaporated milk.

Pour the milk mixture over the cake slowly, so it soaks through all the holes. I had to scoop up the run off from the side of the cake plate a few times, but after 3 rounds of pouring, the cake had absorbed all of the milk. 

I then refrigerated the cake for about 2 - 3 hours. Lastly, I made a simple vegan frosting consisting of:

1/2 cup margarine

1/2 - 3/4 cup powdered sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp almond extract

I should have let the frosting cool a bit (or added more powdered sugar) for a thicker frosting but I was impatient to try to cake. 

The result was fantastic. It's really not a complicated cake at all. 

Vegan Thanksgiving (sic) in the Triangle!

While Thanksgiving is a euphemism for celebrating settler-colonialism, I enjoy the time off from work/school, the great meals, and extended time with family and friends. I, as the author of this article does, don't celebrate Thanksgiving but do "take advantage of the holiday and get together with family and friends to share a large meal without once thinking of the Thanksgiving in 1621."  http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/11/20/do-american-indians-celebrate-thanksgiving-145880

 

This year I'll be spending Thanksgiving with a friend's family in Raleigh and in preparation for what will likely be a delicious but Southern-tinged (read: lots of meat) spread I'm preparing plenty of food for myself and others. My friend, who I don't believe has any Greek ancestry, has told me his family will be having a "Greek style" Thanksgiving so I'll first be contributing vegan spanikopita, the recipe from the classic Vegan with a Vengeance. I'll be doubling this recipe http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/3256563-Spanakopita I'll also make home-made pita, following this recipe: http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2009/03/pita-bread/

I decided at the last minute to also bring a Tofurkey - which I love in all it's processed and high sodium goodness.

Finally, I'll make tofu-chocolate pie, which I've been making for years and which non-vegetarians and vegans often marvel at. I'm not sure where I first got the recipe but it's super simple  - 3 ingredients and about 10 minutes. Here goes:

1. One package of silken tofu (a package is usually about 12 - 14 oz)

2. One bag of vegan chocolate chips. Most non-milk-chocolate chips are vegan but just read the label. I know Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate chips are vegan. This year I'm actually trying out a gluten-free, soy-free version for a gluten intolerant friend (plus they were on sale).

3. One pre-made/store bought graham cracker pie crust. If you are a vegan who eats honey (as I do), most store bought brands will work. Again, this year I found a gluten-free one on sale so am trying that out.

Directions:

1. Melt chocolate chips over double boiler.

2. Blend tofu in blender - add 1 Tb of almond or soymilk if necessary. I have a fancy Vitamix but a standard mixer/blender will work well, as will a food processor or even hand/immersion blender. 

3. Add melted chocolate to tofu and blend well, scraping down sides of blender as necessary. 

4. Pour tofu-chocolate filling into pie crust, cover, and refrigerate as necessary. If you're feeling fancy you can adorn pie with sliced strawberries or another decorative fruit. 

Raw Food

Here I talk about all the raw food I've been making.

Cowgrrrl Cookies

Last week, because I wanted to send some cookies with some gifts for friends, I made a batch of Cowgirl Cookies. I followed pretty closely the recipe from Get it Ripe by Jae Steele, with a few modifications:

2 cups spelt flour (I have a bag in the freezer that’s some mix of white, whole wheat, and spelt flour and that’s what I used)

2 cups rolled oats

½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

1 ¼ cups non dairy chocolate chips (even though I increased this recipe by 1.5, I only used 1 cup)

½ cup organic raisins (optional, or an additional ½ cup non-dairy chocolate chips) (I omitted both the raisins and the extra chocolate chips, and yes, the annoying thing about this cook book is she’s always telling you to use organic ingredients)

½ cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans (optional) (I used walnuts and consider these an essential ingredient

½ tsp cinnamon (optional) (I forgot! So I’m glad it’s optional)

1 (scant) cup softened non-hydrogenated coconut oil or safflower oil (in this recipe, the oil should measure 1 cup less 2 tbsp, or ¾ cup plus 2 tbsp) (I totally didn’t read that second part, I just approximated a little less than 1 cup)

1 cup organic sugar or Sucanat (again, even in my slightly larger recipe, I didn’t use more than 1 cup, I think sugar is something you can skimp on in baking)

1/3 cup room temperature applesauce

1 tsp vanilla

½ cup shredded coconut – I added this because I felt like it

 

You follow the normal combine the dry and then the wet into separate bowls. So add the first 8 – 9 ingredients, plus the coconut if you want to use that. Then mix the wet ingredients plus the sugar, mix well, and then combine. Drop onto an unoiled cookie sheet and bake for about 13 minutes at 350 degrees. For some reason I’m completely horrible ad “dropping cookie dough by tablespoons” and often end up just shaping them by hand.

 

Results: They came out pretty good. I think I perhaps should have watched the time a bit better on the oven (I just get up from the computer and check on them every few minutes) because they are slightly crunchy/crisp. But the combination of chocolate chips and walnuts is simply amazing. Swoon.