Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Belated Mother's Day Posting

Where did the month of May go? The last time I blogged was on Cinco de Mayo... getting to my goal of 100 soups this year might almost be impossible but I'm going to be optimistic and say that I can reach my goal of 50 :). This is definitely a belated Mother's Day posting as I was not able to post the cake the that I made for my grandma and my mom. I decided that since my mom doesn't like tangible gifts like jewelry, shirts that say "I love mom" or "World's Best Mom", or picture frames with my sisters and me in (she has tons already), a cake would be a nice little gift. We can share it with the family and sit around the dining room table enjoying our family time while feasting on dessert. I got this recipe from Joy the Baker and was really excited about it because 1) it is a vegan cake and 2) it uses avocados :). I love avocados but in a cake, not so much. It is much better when it is in guacamole. This was an interesting recipe and one that I just had to put to the test. It got many great reviews for tasting almost like a flour-less chocolate cake (not one of my favorite desserts) so I just had to try it. I had everything I needed at home so I took a crack at it.

Courtesy of Joy the Baker

For the cake:

3 cups all-purpose flour

6 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 cups granulated sugar

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup soft avocado, well mashed, about 1 medium avocado

2 cups water

2 Tablespoons white vinegar (I used juice of a lime)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Baking the cake:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 8 or 9-inch rounds. Set aside.

Sift together all of the dry ingredients except the sugar (add this after you mix the wet ingredients together)

Mix all the wet ingredients together in a bowl, including the super mashed avocado.

Add sugar into the wet mix and stir.

Mix the wet with the dry all at once, and beat with a whisk (by hand) until smooth.

Pour batter into a greased cake tins. Bake the cake for 30 to 40 minutes (until a toothpick inserted comes out clean).

Let the cakes cool for 15 minutes, then turn out onto cooling racks to cool completely before frosting with avocado buttercream.

Avocado Buttercream Frosting from Alton Brown *I would recommend only making half of this recipe so that you can taste the frosting. Many have said that they don't like it because it is too sweet. I actually reduced the amount of sugar by almost 1/4-1/2 cup so that it wasn't too sweet.

For the frosting:

8 ounces of avocado meat, about 2 small to medium, very ripe avocados

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 pound powdered sugar, sifted

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Peel and pit the soft avocados. Avoid any brown spots on the avocado.

Whisk the avocado meat with the lemon juice until it becomes smooth. Joy recommends a stand alone mixer but I have a hand mixer. It works just as well.

Add the powdered sugar a little at a time and beat. Add vanilla extract until combined. Store it in airtight container in the refrigerator if you are not using it right away. Keep in mind that it might brown due to the avocados exposure to oxygen. Mine turned a ghastly brown color.


I think the cake was edible but it is not something I am willing to try again. It was a little too dense for me and as I said before, flour-less chocolate cake is not my style. Even a cup of milk didn't help me get through this cake but I hope you get a chance to try it and like it :).

Updates on my plants:

Currently I'm working on growing some herbs, a bell pepper plant, avocado tree and pineapple plant. So far, only the herbs (I should really say herb since only one seed sprouted) and the bell pepper plant has succeeded (it's grown 3 inches!). Sadly, I have to wait many months to a year before I see any progress in the pineapple plant and ten years before I see the fruits of the avocado tree. I'm glad that I started the process early though so that in the future, it'll be a tree where I can hang my hammock. :)