So, Mitch opened his box, ate his chocolates, and read the card that instructed him to head over to Uische for a beer after work. Once there, he realized: surprise! There were a bunch of guys waiting for him, to toast in his twenty-eighth year with a glass of Guinness. Meanwhile, I was at home, diligently preparing a birthday feast: polenta with pesto, red pepper and goat cheese; green salad; a bottle of Honeymoon mead; and…a birthday cake.
All the other stuff was delicious, yes, but if you know me you know I spent days and days planning the cake but threw the dinner together that night, and hurried through dinner to get to the cake. So, dinner aside, here is the cake:
Let me tell you about it. The cake itself was chocolate, with caramel cream filling and a chocolate glaze. The piping was leftover caramel cream. I was really excited about the interplay of the bittersweet chocolate and the sweet sweet caramel (though it was made a little tart with creme fraiche), but as it turned out, both flavors were so strong and the cake was so rich that neither of us finished our entire slice. But what we did eat? Delicious.
Also, the cake is tiny – the plate it’s on is actually a small salad plate, so the cake was maybe 4″ across, which is perfect for two people. It was fun to make and fun to eat and it got two thumbs up from Mitch, who is incredibly picky about birthday cakes. Hooray! I’d better start scheming for next year.
Here is the cake recipe (my most favorite cake recipe) for you:
Vegan Chocolate Cake
(no eggs! milk! butter! or dairy of any kind!)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 5 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup cold water
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease an 8×8 inch baking pan.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, sugar, cocoa powder, and baking soda. Mix well with a fork, then stir in oil, vinegar, and vanilla extract. When dry ingredients are thoroughly moistened, pour in cold water and stir until batter is smooth. Stir in chocolate chips and pour batter into prepared pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on a rack.