Baking without eggs and dairy

I might not generally be a big fan of PETA (more on why some other time), but I have to admit they do a lot of good things as well. I found this handy infographic on replacing eggs and dairy in baking and I wanted to share it with you guys. It gives a good overview of some easy ways to replace eggs or dairy in your favorite non-vegan recipes. So no more excuses not to bake some vegan goodies!

infographicVeganBaking_PETA_REVISED72

Click the picture to see the bigger version, or for the PDF, click here.

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Happy World Vegan Day!

Today is World Vegan Day, the culmination of Vegetarian Awareness Month and my 6th anniversary as a vegan!

World Vegan Day was established in 1994 by the former president & chair of The Vegan Society, to commemorate the Society’s 50th anniversary. That makes this year The Vegan Society’s 70th anniversary! At the same time it’s also the 70th anniversary of the words “vegan” and “veganism”, coined by Donald Watson.

We’ve celebrated this day with some vegan cake. In this case carrot cake (turned carrot cupcake by request of R). The recipe I used is in Finnish, it has been circulating around different places so I’m not sure where it originally comes from. The recipe will make a big baking tray of cake, I made half of the amount which is enough for 12 cupcakes or a smaller cake.

Carrot cake:
2 dl oat or soy cream
6 dl sugar
1,5 dl oil
9 dl finely shredded carrots
6 dl flour
1,5 tsp salt
3 tsp baking powder
3 tsp vanilla sugar
5 tsp cinnamon

Start by mixing the cream and sugar together. Add in the rest of the ingredients. Pour the batter onto a baking tray (or into muffin liners) and bake in 175 degrees Celsius for about 40 minutes (shorter time if you make cupcakes). Let the cake cool down before adding the frosting.

carrot cupcake

Vegan cream cheese frosting:
150 g natural vegan cream cheese (Tofutti)
90 g vegan margarine
6 dl confectioner’s sugar
1,5 tsp vanilla sugar
shredded coconut or almond flakes for decoration

Mix cream cheese and margarine together. Add vanilla and confectioner’s sugar and mix until it’s even. It should be quite thick. Spread on top of the cake (or cupcake) and decorate with shredded coconut or almond flakes (or both!). For 12 cupcakes or a smaller cake you only need to make half of this recipe.

If you don’t have access to vegan cream cheese (which I didn’t have today), this is a good alternative frosting:
90 g vegan margarine
6 dl confectioner’s sugar
1,5 tsp vanilla sugar
about 1 tbsp soy milk (or other plant-based milk)
shredded coconut or almond flakes for decoration

Mix together margarine, vanilla and confectioner’s sugar. Add in the soy milk, if needed you can add a little more than 1 tablespoon, but make sure the mixture doesn’t get too thin. Decorate the same way as you would have done with the cream cheese frosting.

Fluffy egg-free cupcakes

Baking great looking, tasty cupcakes without dairy and eggs is – contrary to common belief – no problem at all! My favorite cupcake recipe at the moment is based on one by Kamomillan konditoria. Her original recipe yields only one cupcake, but I have made this recipe to yield 12, which is the amount that can fit into my muffin pan.

cupcakes

Vanilla cupcake

1,8 dl sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla powder
1,2 dl oil
3 dl oat milk (or other plant-based milk)
3 dl wheat flour
1,5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

1. Heat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius. Line your muffin pan with muffin cups.
2. Mix sugar, salt, vanilla, oil and oat milk in a bowl.
3. In another bowl, mix flour, baking powder and baking soda before adding it to the liquid. Mix all of the ingredients together quickly.
4. Pour the batter evenly into the muffin cups. Bake in the oven for about 18 minutes. They’re done when you can push a stick into the muffin without any batter sticking on it.
5. Let the cupcakes cool down before decorating and eating them.

This basic cupcake recipe can be made into pretty much any flavor of cupcake you like, some that I have made include chocolate (where you just add in grated dairy-free dark chocolate, or cocoa powder, into the batter), chocolate and coffee (where you substitute part of the oat milk with coffee and add either grated chocolate or cocoa powder), and orange (where you substitute the oat milk with orange juice). I’m sure you can also add in berries in the batter if you like, even though I haven’t tried it with this particular recipe. Only your imagination is the limit!

Then there’s of course the decoration part. It’s not my strong side, I’ve probably messed up more cupcakes that I’ve succeeded with, so I will not get into it at this point. However, the decoration on the cupcakes in the picture is based on soy cream (thickened by adding a little agar agar and boiling for a few minutes, then letting it cool over night before whipping it), in one I have mixed in melted dark chocolate, in the other a blueberry-raspberry jam.

Black bean brownies

brownies

I’ve stumbled upon different recipes of brownies based on black beans for some time now, and I’ve always thought it sounds interesting and worth trying out. I have my go-to brownie recipe (which you can find here), which I love – it’s sweet, chocolatey, fudgey and melts in the mouth – but it contains quite a lot of sugar and white flour so it’s nothing that I would like to eat too much of. So I tried one of the brownie recipes based on black beans with the hope that I could find a new, healthier, way to enjoy brownies.

This is the recipe I followed:

Unfortunately I was a bit disappointed in the result. The brownies did taste chocolate, they were soft and quite sweet. But the texture was not great; they didn’t feel fudgey enough and didn’t melt in the mouth. I didn’t enjoy them that much on their own, but together with a little peanut butter or vanilla ice cream they were actually really good.

Maybe there are better recipes for this type of brownies than the one I tried, I’m still up for other ones. Baked goods and sweets (especially things with chocolate) are really my weak side, I love making them (and I love eating them!), so finding healthier versions of these things would really be great.

Do you have a good recipe for healthier brownies or other baked goods? Please share with me!

Bread with carrot and apple

I’ve been on a baking spree lately. As a change from the sweet baked goods I decided to bake bread. We had some meat of carrot and apple left from juicing the day before, so I searched the mighty internet for a bread including these two ingredients. I found one in a Swedish blog that I decided to make (you can find it here), I will post it in English below.

bread with carrot and apple

Bread with carrot and apple

3 dl water
25 g yeast
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
5 tbsp flax seeds
2 dl shredded carrot
1 dl shredded apple
about 8 dl flour of your choice (I used a whole-wheat flour)

Heat the water to 37 degrees celsius. Break the yeast into a big bowl and pour over part of the water, mix until the yeast has dissolved. Add the rest of the water, oil, salt, sugar, flax seeds, shredded carrot and shredded apple. Add the flour little by little. Mix the dough well before leaving it to rise covered with a towel for 45 minutes.
Grease and flour a baking pan. Pour the dough into it and let it rise for another 25 minutes. Brush the bread with water and spread some flax seeds over. Bake the bread in the oven (preheated to 200 degrees celsius) for 40-45 minutes.