Archive for Special Occaisons

Vegan Chocolate Fondue for Valentine’s Day

You may not know this about me, but I love to fondue. I know, it’s super old-school. But I still love it. It’s like playing with your food… and you’re allowed. Not just allowed, encouraged!

I have a circa-1970’s fondue pot that I pull out about once a year or so (usually on Christmas Eve), but I also have a smaller, candle-heated one as well. Cheese goes in the big one, chocolate goes in the small one.

Chocolate Fondue

And then the fun begins; sampling different breads, pretzels, fruits, and veg along with the gooey cheese, and then cookies, cake, marshmallows, whatever! with the chocolate.

It’s fun, delicious and interactive.

So, with Valentine’s Day coming up, there isn’t really much more fun you can have with your sweetie (well, okay, maybe there is one other thing 😉 ) than fonduing!

When it comes to doing a chocolate fondue, you want to use the good stuff. For me, that usually means dark chocolate, at least 70% cacao. The bonus of using a dark chocolate is that it’s by default vegan, as it’s the milk solids that are added to the dark chocolate that make it milk chocolate (and not vegan).

This recipe comes from Regina Braun of Leelalicious. It uses a really dark chocolate–85% if you can get it–Green & Blacks makes a good one.

THE FOOD GAYS - GREEN AND BLACKS

This gorgeous fondue by The Food Gays. Click for recipe.

Leelalicious’s Decadent Dark Chocolate Fondue for Two {Vegan}

Recipe courtesy of Regina Braun of Leelalicious for Green & Black’s

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 100 g (1 bar) Green & Black’s 85% Dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup (125mL) coconut cream
  • 1 tsp. (5mL) vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp. (15-30mL) favoured liquor (Grand Marnier or Kahlua would be great), optional

For dipping:

  • Assorted fruit
  • Fresh coconut pieces (bite-sized)
  • Coconut for garnish (optional)

Method:

  1. Melt chocolate in the top part of a double boiler, or glass bowl set over a pot with 1 inch simmering water, over low heat, whisking frequently until smooth.
  2. Whisk in coconut cream, mixing until smooth and well combined. Stir in vanilla extract and optional flavoured liquor.
  3. Transfer to a fondue pot and serve with dippings of choice. Garnish with coconut (optional).

 

Chocolate Pumpkin Beer Cake {Vegan}

This cake has rapidly become my go-to when it comes to birthdays.

Truthfully, I am kind of snob when it comes to baked goods. Despite the fact that my kid loves Oreos, we very seldom have them in the house. I prefer to send him to school with homemade cookies in his lunch.

Chocolate Pumpkin Beer Cake Vegan

Same goes for birthday cakes. Now, I’m not much of a decorator. My cakes are not elegant by any means. Rustic rules the day. But what they lack in finesse, they make up for in flavor.

It was my brother’s birthday a few months back, and I made this cake (for a table full of carnivores). This was the result:

Vegan chocolate pumpkin beer cake

Yup, you don’t have to be vegan to like it. It’s just good cake.

I liked this recipe so much, I put it in my cookbook. This version I’m sharing with you today is a slight adaptation that includes pumpkin, because, well, I had some that needed to be used up, and also, it’s that time of the year. Pumpkin is great to add to vegan recipes because it both binds and helps to make the cake nice and moist.

I’m using a dark beer here. Porters and stouts are perfect for this kind of recipe. They go so well with the chocolate, and they add both a depth of flavor and also a lightness to the cake, from the carbonation of the beer.

So if you’ve never baked with beer, why not?? It rocks.

Chocolate Pumpkin Beer Cake

For the cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 1⁄2 cups dark beer (I’m using Granville Island Brewing’s Mocha Porter)
  • 3⁄4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 tbsp aquafaba
  • 1⁄8 tsp cream of tartar

For the Chocolate Ganche:

  • 1 cup 70% good quality vegan bittersweet (dark) chocolate
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened non-dairy milk (approx.)

Method:

  1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder.
  2. In a separate bowl, whip together the sugar, coconut oil, vanilla and pumpkin. Add the beer and stir again until everything is homogeneous.
  3. Using a hand- or stand- mixer, add the aquafaba and the cream of tartar to the bowl. Whip for about 6-10 minutes, or until soft peaks form.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to combine. Carefully fold the whipped aquafaba into the cake batter. Pour into a prepared bundt pan.
  5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool, then remove from the pan.
  6. To make the ganache, melt chocolate and milk together over a bain marie, adding more milk if needed to get the right constancy. Pour over the cake and allow to drip down the sides.

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