Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Vegan Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake
I can guess what some of you are thinking: olive oil? in a cake?
How do I know this? Because that's what Dad's first reaction was when I told him I made it. But I assure you that it's delicious. In fact, I took it over to a (non-vegan) friend's place for dessert, and it was a big hit. Well, I also brought my oreos, so I'm not sure which was the favorite, but everyone liked everything! Two desserts is the way to go.
I got a giant bag of blood oranges at the farmers' market a few weeks ago, so I was really excited when I remembered I had a recipe for a blood-orange cake. I've modified it in several ways to make it both easier and vegan. It's quite moist, and there are beautiful and juicy chunks of blood orange throughout. Also, as a bonus, it doesn't require either a food processor or a mixer to make the batter, so less stuff to clean!
If you can't find blood oranges, you can use orange oranges instead, but do try and find the blood oranges.
Yes, they're more expensive, and, yes, they're less common, but...they're just so pretty! And using them makes this cake that much more of a treat.
I took pictures of my process this time, so you can see the milk curdling with the zest + sugar, the steps to supreme the oranges, the chunks of orange + the juice and milk mixture, the batter, and the final cake.
I've now made it two weekends in a row. Delicious both times!
Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake
cooking spray1/2 Cup soy milk
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice or vinegar
3 blood oranges
1 Cup sugar
4 1/2 tsp Ener-g egg replacer (equivalent of 3 eggs)
6 Tbsp water
1 3/4 Cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 Cup extra virgin olive oil
coarse sugar (Sparkling Sugar) for topping
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly spray a 9"x5" loaf pan with cooking spray. Reduce temperature by 25 degrees if you're using a dark pan.
2. Combine soy milk and lemon juice or vinegar in a non-reactive bowl (or glass measuring cup works well). Set aside. (it needs to curdle to stimulate buttermilk)
3. In a large bowl, combine the zest of 2 oranges and the sugar. Mush ingredients together with your fingers until the zest is evenly distributed.
4. Supreme an orange: cut off the bottom and top so you can see some fruit and so the orange has flat ends so it can stand up on its own on the cutting board. Cut away the peel and pith (white stuff) by following the curve of the orange with your knife. Separate the orange segments and get rid of as much pith and connective membranes as you can/until you're tired of doing it. Let them fall into a small bowl. Break up or cut the segments into about 1/4" pieces. Repeat with the second orange.
5. Halve the third orange and squeeze the juice into a small bowl or measuring cup. Add the soy milk and lemon juice mixture. Lightly mix. (You can also juice the orange directly into the soy milk mixture if it's in a large enough container) Add the new mixture to the sugar and whisk well. Add the egg replacer and water (equivalent of 3 eggs) and whisk.6. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Gently whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ones. Switch to a spatula and fold in olive oil a little bit at a time. At first you'll think it won't work, but have patience and add all of the oil. Fold in the pieces of orange you cut/broke up.
7. Scrape the batter into your pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle sugar on top (I used coarse, but you can use regular if you want. or none at all) and place on the middle rack of your oven. Bake for about 55 minutes, or until it's golden and a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 5-10 minutes and then remove from pan and let it finish cooling right side up.
If you eat eggs, feel free to substitute 3 large eggs for the Ener-G egg replacer + water
If you drink milk, instead of the soy milk + lemon juice, you can use buttermilk or yogurt. I didn't try it with soy yogurt, but it seems like it should work too (?)