Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls (Vegan) for Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day is all about the brunch.

The problem is, though, that going out to brunch on Mother’s Day is a bit of a circus. You’ll need reservations, and if you try for something more casual, you’ll likely encounter lineups and long waits.

chocolate cinnamon buns (vegan)

Maybe skip the whole thing all together, and make your mom breakfast in bed?

I love this recipe because you make it the night before, allow it to rise overnight, and then bake it in the morning. It’s totally NBD, but the final product is pretty impressive.

I’ve made these before without the chocolate, but you guys, it’s Mother’s Day. It begs for something special, and in my world, special equals either donuts or chocolate. Or chocolate donuts.

Warm, oozing sweet chocolate, your mom will love these. Trust me. I am one.

A quick word about vegan chocolate: most chocolate that is 70% or more (dark chocolate) is vegan. It won’t have milk added to it. They can’t legally call it “vegan” because it’s been manufactured in a facility that handles milk, but it won’t have milk in it. Check the label to be sure, but pretty much any dark chocolate won’t have milk in it.

Here, I used Green & Blacks, which is both organic and fair trade, a British brand I’ve personally loved a long time.

Okay! On with the recipe, we have a mother to impress!

vegan chocolate cinnamon buns

Vegan Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls

(makes one round 8″ cake tin, double for two)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup vegan milk (I used homemade cashew)
  • 3 tbsp aquafaba
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp melted vegan butter
  • 1/2 tsp yeast

 

  • 2 tbsp–1/4 cup melted vegan butter
  • 3-4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1-2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 85% dark Green & Blacks Chocolate bar, chopped

Method

  1. I make mine in the bread maker. Fire all the ingredients into your breadmaker in the order listed, then select the dough setting. If you don’t have a bread maker, place all the wet ingredients in the bowl of your mixer and use the paddle attachment. Mix the wet ingredients together well. Switch to the dough hook, and first add the sugar, then the yeast, and then slowly, in batches, the flour until it’s all incorporated. Add the salt last. The dough is done when it pulls away from the sides of the bowl. It should not be shaggy. If it is, dump it onto the counter, sprinkle with a little flour, and knead some more, continuing to sprinkle with flour and knead until it is smooth and elastic.
  2. Place in a large bowl in a warm spot and cover with a damp towel. Allow to rise for about and hour or 90 minutes.
  3. Dump the dough onto your counter (flouring if needed) and punch it down. Begin to roll it out into a rectangle, about 1/2″ thick.
  4. Brush the surface with melted vegan butter, then sprinkle over a fine layer of cinnamon. Follow that with a thicker layer of brown sugar, and finally, sprinkle over the chopped chocolate.
  5. Roll the dough up, jelly-roll style. Cut it in half, then each half in half, and each of those halves in half, to give you 8 pieces. Place in a greased, 8″ cake pan, cover with a wet towel, and allow to rise in a warm spot overnight.
  6. In the morning, preheat your oven to 375, and bake for about 15-20 minutes until golden on top. Serve warm.

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Vegan Scallops

I am Top Chef obsessed. Always have been. I’ve watched them all. My favorite, of course, were Top Chef Canada, because I loved seeing my local chefs (whose work I was a big fan of) shine on a national level.

The Top Chef Canada franchise only lasted 4 seasons, sadly, but just recently, they brought it back, with Top Chef Canada All Stars.

vegan scallops

A couple years back, I got to attend a Top Chef event that featured the food of the ladies who had competed. One of my faves on the show was Lauren Marshall, who has been the only vegan, as far as I know, to compete. There was this one episode where she made a vegan scallop dish, and we got to try it that night. It was amazing.

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago when I got invited to a lunch at Diva at the Met. Now, we have some great restaurants here in Vancouver, but weirdly, Diva was a place I had never eaten at, and upon reflection, I’m not sure why. The food was wonderful, and they represent all the things I love: they cook locally, in season, and they strive to make as much as possible in-house (including these incredible chocolates made by their pastry chef!).

scallops diva at the met

One dish that was served at the lunch was a scallop atop a kind of salsa made from avocado, hearts of palm and cucumber. I was determined to veganize it.

The key to vegan scallops are King Mushrooms. I had to go to a few places before I found them, but I eventually found them at a little Korean produce store in my ‘hood. When you slice the stems into rounds, they look exactly like scallops. They even have that slightly rubbery bite that you get with scallops. They are dead ringers.

Given that rhubarb is so in season right now, I wanted to incorporate it into the recipe as well.

You could serve this on a platter (like the Diva version) or as I did, in individual portions on spoons. Either way, it’s an elegant starter for your next party. In fact, I think I’ll serve this at my book launch!

Shameless plug: my cookbook, Aquafabulous!: 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba is now in bookstores! You can also order it fromĀ Amazon.ca or Amazon.com and Chapters-Indigo.

Vegan Scallops with avocado salsa

Vegan Scallops

Ingredients

  • 4 king mushrooms
  • 1-2 stalks rhubarb, cut into 1/2″ squares
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vinegar (preferably apple cider)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp coarse salt
  • Olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado, cut into 1/2″ squares
  • 1/2 cucumber, cut into 1/2″ squares
  • 1/4 cup edamame beans or fresh corn
  • fresh chives or green onion

Method:

  1. Quick pickle the rhubarb. In a small saucepan on the stove, heat together the water, vinegar, sugar and salt until they are all melted together. Bring just to the boil. Place the rhubarb in a heat-proof bowl and pour the pickling liquid over it and allow it to stand while you do the rest of your prep.
  2. Chop the avocado and cucumber, and place in another bowl. Add the edamame and stir well.
  3. Top and tail the king mushrooms. Set aside the caps and ends for another use. Cut the mushroom in half and then each half into halves, giving you 4 circles of mushroom stem.
  4. Heat a heavy frying pan over medium-high heat, and add oil to the pan. It’ important that the pan and oil are hot to get a good sear. Place the mushrooms into the pan, and allow to cook for about 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and a little garlic powder. Once they are caramelized on one side, flip, and allow to cook to a similar doneness on the other side.
  5. Drain the rhubarb, reserving some of the pickling liquid. Add the rhubarb, a little of the pickling liquid and some olive oil to your salsa, and stir well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Place the salsa on a plate in a pile, and then top with “scallops.” Garnish with sliced green onions or chives.

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