Just because you’re not a vegan doesn’t mean you won’t want to bake like one now and again. When I’m in a coffee shop or market that offers both traditional and vegan cookies, I find that I usually prefer the vegan versions, so there is that. But you may also find yourself wanting to bake something for a vegan friend or loved one. What resource can the novice turn to? Well the other day I was in the library with a very strong craving for oatmeal cookies when I found Doron Petersan’s book, Sticky Fingers’ Sweets, 100 Super-Secret Vegan Recipes. She is a multi-time Cupcake Wars winner and runs a Washington D.C. shop called Sticky Fingers Sweets & Eats. I can tell you that I’ve tried three of her recipes and the results were very good.
I made the cupcakes in the photo above for my husband’s monthly work birthday celebration last week (he’s on the party committee). One of the birthday celebrants is a vegan, so since I already had some of the vegan ingredients I’d need from making the oatmeal cookies in the book, I offered to make a big batch of vegan cupcakes for the whole work group. Really, I don’t think they would have guessed the cupcakes were vegan – at least until they saw the vegan in the group eating one. The trickiest part of making the cupcakes was scaling the recipe up from 18 to 27 cupcakes (the measurements weren’t round to begin with, e.g. cups plus tablespoons, etc.). But I multiplied each ingredient amount by 1.5 and that gave me just the right amount of batter.
You can find the recipe for the cupcake batter I used (Chocolate Love Cake) here. I read about red cocoa powder in another recipe in the book. I hadn’t heard of it before. You don’t need it for this recipe, but I happened to find it at the store so I gave it a try. It didn’t turn the cake red or anything, but the cocoa definitely is red and it gives a nice fudge flavor. I’d like to make some hot cocoa with it and see how the color develops. Valentine’s Day cocoa perhaps? The fairy cupcake holders are by Cupcake Creations of Sweden. They do not require a muffin pan which is nice when you are making 27 cupcakes. Finally, the chocolate pearls are by Valrhona. I splurged on these at Whole Foods last month. They have something called sugar biscuit cereals inside the 55% cocoa shells. They add such a pleasant, soft crunch to frosting and whipped cream, and they look so pretty.