FOOD & COOKING: Two Kinds of Vegan & Vegetarian Friendly Holiday Cupcakes!

I use my vegan cupcake bible…A LOT.  Like more than my favorite Joy of Cooking.  This bible as I like to call it, is also known as Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World.  I used the “Golden Vanilla Cupcakes” recipe as my base.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup soy milk
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbs cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract, caramel extract or more vanilla extract

Spice cake With candy cane butter cream Frosting

The Batter

The recipe is used EXACTLY as above except 1/4 tsp turmeric, 1/4 tsp of nutmeg, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/8 tsp of cloves were added to the dry ingredients and mixed together.  I also like to use about 1/4 cup of honey and 1/4 cup of granulated sugar instead of the 3/4 granulated sugar.  It gives the batter a delicate sweetness which is better since the frosting will be quite strong.

Pre heat the oven to 350°F

Combine all dry ingredients into a bowl.  Sift all-purpose flour and cornstarch, add the salt, baking powder and soda, and the three spices above (turmeric, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves).

Combine soy milk in a liquid measuring cup and add apple cider vinegar.  Sir together and let sit to curdle.  Once curdled, add the sugars (granulated, and honey).  Add your vanilla extract and whisk in your oil.  Mix all ingredients until the granulated sugar has dissolved and the honey is mixed in.

Fold your wet ingredients into your dryFill cupcake foils about 3/4 fullBake for about 20-22 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test*.

*tooth pick test: insert a toothpick in the center of the cupcake and if it comes out dry, it passes the toothpick test!

The Frosting

This frosting I made was not vegan because I only had butter available.  But follow the directions on your vegetable shortening package to create about 1/2 cup worth of “butter equivalent” for you vegan folks.

Ingredients:

  • 3 full size candy canes
  • 1/2 stick of room temperature butter (1/2 cup)
  • 2 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar (measured unsifted)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp fruit juice (raspberry, blueberry, cherry, strawberry would work well- cranberry may be too tart)
  • a couple of drops of peppermint extract
  • hammer and some newspaper

First things first.  You’re going to have to unwrap those candy canes and smash them up.  Break up the candy canes into a few smaller pieces and put them into a clean plastic bag.  Get your news paper (a whole section) and open it up and put the bag of candy inside the fold (like a taco).  Hit the candy with the hammer until most of the candy break into good-sized chunks.

Next, you take your room temperature butter and cream it in a medium-sized bowl.  Add about half of the sugar into a sieve (the ones with the hand crank work like magic) and sift the sugar over the butter.

Using a spatula, mix the sugar and butter together, occasionally chopping the butter and sugar clumps into smaller pieces.  It should be about the consistency of pebbles or the beginning stages of pie crust.

Add more sugar, sifting it like you did before- over the butter.  Mix again, chopping the chunks with your spatula.

Next, add your fruit juice and vanilla extract and blend well with the spatula, flattening any clumps and lumps.  Cream it until it looks smooth.

Add as much of the candy cane pieces as you deem necessary, being careful to work around the larger chunks that did not get smashed (you will use those as a garnish later).

If you feel you need your frosting to be more stiff, add the remaining amount of sugar (after sifting) and blend well.

Add a few drops of the peppermint extract (2-3 drops are plenty) and mix well.

Make sure you ice your cuppies after they have cooled- or all of your hard work will melt right off of them!

For the finishing touch, take the larger chunks that did not make it into the frosting and stick them on top after you have finished frosting them!  They will stand out in a crowd!

Walnut & Ginger Cake with Orange Coconut spice buttercream

The Batter

The recipe is used EXACTLY as above except  1/4 cup of walnuts, and 3 tbs of candied ginger were added to the dry ingredients and mixed together.  I also only used 1 tbs of corn starch instead of two.  I also like to use about 1/4 cup of honey, 1/4 cup of molasses, 2 tsp granulated sugar and 2 tbs brown sugar instead of the 3/4 granulated sugar.  It gives the batter a much richer flavor and a sweetness which will work nicely with the texture and spice of the frosting.

Pre heat the oven to 350°F

Coarsely chop the candied ginger and walnuts.

Combine all dry ingredients into a bowl.  Sift all-purpose flour and cornstarch, add the salt, baking powder and soda, and the nuts and ginger (save a few large pieces of ginger for garnish).

Combine soy milk in a liquid measuring cup and add apple cider vinegar.  Sir together and let sit to curdle.  Once curdled, add the sugars (granulated, brown, molasses and honey).  Add your vanilla extract and whisk in your oil.  Mix all ingredients until the granulated and brown sugar has dissolved and the honey and molasses are mixed well.

Fold your wet ingredients into your dryFill cupcake foils about 3/4 fullBake for about 20-22 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test*.

*tooth pick test: insert a toothpick in the center of the cupcake and if it comes out dry, it passes the toothpick test!

The Frosting

This frosting I made was not vegan because I only had butter available and I already used a half a stick to make the first batch.  Again, follow the directions on your vegetable shortening package to create about 1/2 cup worth of “butter equivalent” for you vegan folks.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 stick of room temperature butter (1/2 cup)
  • 2 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar (measured unsifted)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 of finely chopped dried coconut
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp orange juice (with no pulp)
  • a couple of drops of orange extract

Take your room temperature butter and cream it in a medium-sized bowl.  Add nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and turmeric and cream well until butter becomes a bright yellowish-orange (until most of the turmeric has dissolved).

Add about half of the sugar into a sieve (the ones with the hand crank work like magic) and sift the sugar over the butter.  Using a spatula, mix the sugar and butter together, occasionally chopping the butter and sugar clumps into smaller pieces.  It should be about the consistency of pebbles or the beginning stages of pie crust.

Add more sugar, sifting it like you did before- over the butter.  Mix again, chopping the chunks with your spatula.

Next, add your orange juice and vanilla extract and blend well with the spatula, flattening any clumps and lumps.  Cream it until it looks smooth.

Add as much of the dried coconut as you deem necessary and mix well.

If you feel you need your frosting to be more stiff, add the remaining amount of sugar (after sifting) and blend well.

Add a few drops of the orange extract (2-3 drops are plenty) and mix well.

The ginger pieces you saved at the beginning look great on top!  Try it, and see what you think!

Two dozen holidaze cupcakes! It's a party in your mouth!

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