Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Vegetable Cakes

Chocolate & Zucchini Cake

240 grams (2 cups) all-purpose flour
60 grams (1/2 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
180 grams (1 scant cup) light brown sugar (I use unrefined cane sugar)
115 grams (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature, or 1/2 cup virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules or 2 tablespoons strong cooled coffee -- this is just to deepen the chocolate flavor, you won't taste it in the finished product
3 large eggs
350 grams (2 cups) unpeeled grated zucchini, from about 1 1/2 medium zucchini
160 grams (1 cup) good-quality bittersweet chocolate chips, or chopped chocolate
Confectioner's sugar (optional)

* Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Grease a 25-cm (10-inch) round springform pan or a 22-cm (8 1/2-inch) square pan.
* In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
* In the bowl of a mixer (or by hand in a large mixing bowl), beat the sugar and butter until fluffy. Add the vanilla, coffee, and eggs, mixing well between each addition.
* In a large mixing bowl, combine the zucchini, chocolate chips, and about a third of the flour mixture, making sure the zucchini strands are well coated and not clumping too much.
* Add the rest of the flour mixture into the egg batter. Mix until just combined; the batter will be thick.
* Fold the zucchini mixture into the batter, and blend with a spatula without overmixing. Pour into the prepared cake pan, and level the surface.
* Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer onto a rack to cool for 10 minutes, run a knife around the pan to loosen, and unclasp the sides of the pan. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar or a chocolate glaze if desired.

Butternut Pumpkin Swiss Roll Cake
nb: I plan to make this as just a cake, and not do the roll thing.

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup mashed cooked butternut squash
3/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup finely chopped walnuts
confectioners' sugar

1 (8 ounce) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup confectioners' sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
confectioners' sugar (optional)

* In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs; gradually beat in sugar.
* Add squash and mix well. Combine the flour, baking soda and cinnamon; add to squash mixture and mix well. 
* Line a 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan with waxed paper; grease and flour the paper. Spread batter evenly into pan. Sprinkle with walnuts. Bake at 375 for 13-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
* Turn cake onto a kitchen towel dusted with confectioners' sugar. Gently peel off waxed paper. Roll up cake in the towel, jelly-roll style, starting with a short side. Cool completely on wire rack.
* In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, confectioners' sugar and vanilla until smooth. Unroll cake; spread filling evenly over cake within 1 inch of edges. Roll up again. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Just before serving, dust with confectioners' sugar if desired.

Sweet Potato Cake

2.25 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
500g sweet potatoes, mashed or grated.
1 cup sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup water

3/4 cup white chocolate chips
1.5 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sour cream
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
3 -4 cups powdered sugar

* Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease and flour two 9 inch round baking pans. 

* Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger in small bowl. Combine sweet potatoes, sugar and brown sugar in large bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add oil; beat until well blended. Stir in morsels, pecans and water. Stir in flour mixture; mix until blened. Pour into prepared pans. 
* Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes; invert onto wire racks to cool completely. 
* Microwave chips and butter in small, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on medium-high (70%) for 1 minute; stir. Morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10 to 15 second intervals, stirring just until melted. Cool to room temperature.
* Beat cream cheese and sour cream into morsel mixture until creamy. Add vanilla extract and almond extract. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until mixture reaches spreading consistency. 
* Spread frosting between layers and over top and sides of cake.

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