Monday, October 18, 2010
Two Layer Vegan Earl Grey Tea Cake. Yes, That's What I Said.
This past weekend was a bit bananas. It included a visit from my in-laws, a Joan Baez concert, a twelve course vegan molecular gastronomy meal, getting my hands on a brand new book featuring a screenplay I wrote, a bunch of people dancing to Harry Belafonte songs in a barn with a smoke machine and coloured lights, a barfing husband, a dog pooping in the guest room (where the in-laws were sleeping), an overflowing toilet, a leaking ceiling, some lost car and house keys, Megan doing an amazing Nancy Drew impression, and one very nice dinner of barley potato stew and this Earl Grey Tea cake.
And I'm not making any of that up. Which is why tonight I am super happy to just be sitting in front of the fireplace wearing fuzzy green sweatpants with only a snoring dog and a motionless cat for company.
I've been wanting to make Earl Grey flavoured baked goods for a while. I tried some cupcakes a few weeks ago and they were a complete disaster. I was a bit put off. However, fortune follows bravery, so when Michael asked me to bring dessert to his dinner party on Sunday night I tried again. This time, an excellent layer cake was the result. Achievement unlocked!
I brought the one leftover piece of this in to work and cut it in half to give to my two admin assistants, Diane and Matthieu. Matthieu, who is very, very French Canadian sent me the following e-mail after he ate it: "yummy! Burb! It was delicious! :-) Did your cake have citrus in it?" In fact it did. And really, do you need a more ringing endorsement than "Yummy! Burb!"?
Earl Grey Tea Layer Cake
3 cups all purpose white flour
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
4 Earl Grey Tea bags (or more, if your tea is weak and crappy)
1/2 cup margarine
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 9 tbsp water
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly grease and set aside two round 8" cake pans. If you want your future to be awesome and stress-free, cut parchment paper to line the bottom of each pan.
Sift flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda and tea from tea bags into one bowl and set it aside.
In another bowl, cream margarine with sugar.
Add lemon juice, flax and water to sugar mixture. Mix well.
Mix vanilla extract into almond milk to "sour" the milk.
Alternately add quarter cups of flour mixture and soured almond milk to sugar mixture, until everything is combined. Don't go crazy and over-mix it.
Divide batter equally into prepared pans.
Bake for between 35-45 minutes, until a chopstick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Let cool in pan for ten minutes, then turn out onto cooling rack until they have cooled completely.
-I evened out my cakes a bit by carefully sawing off the tops with a bread knife. Then I frosted them with a completely seat-of-my-pants icing which involved me throwing icing sugar, almond milk, margarine, and lemon extract into my Kitchenaid Mixer and hoping for the best.
-Speaking of that Kitchenaid Mixer is now MINE! Regular readers will remember that I borrowed it from Kat because she wasn't using it very often. She called me the other day and told me that for a wedding gift she'd like me to keep it. Hooray! A gift that's free for her (she's got better things to spend her money on) and is useful to me. Plus, it looks so nice on my kitchen shelf, I'd hate to see it go.
-The main reason you aren't hearing me dish about my brand new wedding gifts is because we didn't really get any. Seeing as we didn't need any new stuff we asked people to donate money to either the Ottawa Humane Society or the Aylmer SPCA instead. Some people figured out cool gifts to give us that weren't donations and that was fine too, but I felt good knowing that the places who were responsible for bringing Catie and Sacha into our lives were going to get something out of it, too.
This Time Last Year: Date Macadamia Balls