Everybody loves cake! What better way to help perk up your kitchen on a wintery day than sharing the warmth and sugary smell of a classic cake baking in the oven. My grandma made a German Chocolate Cake that was simply out of this world. It had a rich, thick frosting laden with butter and the dark moist cake was made with eggs and milk. I adored it. So now, I have created a dairy- and egg-free vegan version that tastes much like the original to truly satisfy sweet cravings!
Vegan German Chocolate Cake
• 1/3 cup vegan margarine
• 1/2 cup (about 4 ounces) soft regular tofu, drained
• 1/4 cup maple syrup
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 cup raw unsweetened shredded dried coconut
• 3/4 cup chopped pecans
• 3 tablespoons maple sugar, brown sugar or sucanat
• 1 cup whole-wheat flour
• 1 cup pastry flour
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
• 3/4 cup maple sugar, brown sugar or sucanat
• 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
• 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded dried coconut
• 1 1/4 cups sweetened nondairy milk
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 10 whole pecans for garnish (optional)
• 1/4 cup vegan chocolate curls, for garnish optional (see note)
• 1/4 cup raw unsweetened coconut flakes, for garnish optional
1. To make the frosting, put the vegan margarine, tofu, maple syrup, and vanilla extract in a blender and process until smooth. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add the coconut, pecans, and sugar and stir until well blended. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.
2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Oil a 9-inch round cake pan.
3. Put the flours, baking powder baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and stir with a dry whisk to combine. Add the sugar, cocoa powder, and coconut, and whisk to combine. Stir in the nondairy milk, olive oil, and lemon juice and mix just until incorporated. Don’t over-mix or the cake will be tough.
4. Pour batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Put the pan on a wire rack and loosen the sides of the cake with a knife. Cool for about 15 minutes. Carefully remove the cake from the pan. Let the cake cool completely for about 1 hour before frosting.
5. Spoon the frosting over the top of the cake. Gently spread the frosting in an even layer, using an off set spatula (the frosting will be very thick). Garnish with pecans and vegan chocolate curls (if using). Serve at room temperature or chilled. Covered tightly and stored in the refrigerator, the cake will keep for 2 days.
NOTE: To make chocolate curls, slice a vegan chocolate candy bar into small “curls” using a carrot peeler.
Laura Theodore is a 2014 TASTE award-winning television personality, radio host, vegan chef, cookbook author and recording artist. She is author of Jazzy Vegetarian Classics: Vegan Twists on American Family Favorites and Jazzy Vegetarian: Lively Vegan Cuisine Made Easy and Delicious. Laura is the on-camera host, writer and co-producer of the popular cooking show, Jazzy Vegetarian and hosts the weekly podcast radio show, Jazzy Vegetarian Radio.