After I’ve grated the squash, measured the flour, the baking powder, and the baking soda. After I’ve finished mixing the oil and the maple syrup and the vanilla into an unholy-looking mess. After I’ve shoveled spoonfuls of the batter into my mouth because it’s so tasty and nearly finished baking the goddamn cake, I start to agonize. Should I be baking this cake at all? Is there any way on earth I will be able to exercise moderation with this one?
The answer, even in my heart, is a pretty cocky “no.” But then who could be convinced that a cake with a vegetable baked inside it, and a fruit on top of it, a cake made of whole-wheat flour, could be anything but good?
And it is, oh, it is.
I had a whole mess of yellow squash left over from our Pennsylvania adventure, and instead of making more squash bread (which is delicious, by the way), I thought I’d try instead to make a squash cake. A rectangular one, with a goeey, glaze-like icing of pineapple buttercream.
The cake itself is moist, dense, and tender. The squash flecks it with pale, yellow tendrils, and the icing has these tasty little bits of pineapple in it that will make your tastebuds dance. The coconut oil gives the whole thing a certain je ne sais quoi without being even slightly obvious.
I know you have a ton of squash (zucchini’s good here too) sitting in your refrigerator, so there’s really nothing standing between you and this cake. I’ll get out of the way right now and leave you with the recipe.
- For the cake:
- 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- 1½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp sea salt or kosher salt
- 1 tsp powdered cinnamon
- 2 cups grated squash (use yellow or green, either's fine)
- ½ cup organic coconut oil
- 1½ cups maple syrup or turbinado sugar
- ¾ cup applesauce
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- For the icing:
- 1 stick (8 tbsp) vegan butter like Earth Balance
- 1 cup powdered sugar or maple syrup
- ½ cup crushed pineapple (I like a few chunky bits in the frosting)
- Make the cake:
- Mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a ;arge bowl.
- In another bowl, mix the oil, maple syrup and vanilla and whisk to mix well.
- Add the applesauce and the vanilla extract, whisk in, then add the squash and mix well.
- Add the wet mixture to the dry and mix with a spatula until well combined, but do not overmix.
- Pour the batter into a 10 by 6 inch cake tin or baking dish and bake in a 350-degree oven for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool on a rack.
- Make the icing:
- Place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined. This frosting is fairly runny, so your icing will be halfway between a glaze and a buttercream.
- Refrigerate the frosting for about 30 minutes, and then frost the cooled cake.
This and that:
Non-vegan food that’s making me salivate this week: Punitions. These sound amazing, but why would the French name a cookie “punishment?”
Just wrapped up Ruth Reichl’s Tender at the Bone. Not much here for a vegan, recipe-wise, but a good read for anyone who loves food.
I am the queen of stress (Ask Desi. I always laugh inside when friends tell me I look so calm). Just finished reading this book which has some simple but really effective tools to fight stress.
Recipe that made me feel all good and healthy just to read about it: Live Spring Rolls with Lemon Ginger Dipping Sauce. Ooh, yummmm!!
Favorite quote from Jay this week: “You have to try new things mom, you have to try!”
Favorite recent animal story: Gremlin Von Cocopuff. Look at that face!