I am the worst. I know. Not even going to make an excuse.
Ok, maybe a little excuse. I bought veggiewithacause.com, and my lovely SO has been kindly helping me move my blog over there. Hence this staging environment. He told me to make it aesthetically how I wanted, and then he would do the magic internets stuff. So that is where that is. Please let me know what you think of this design! Stay tuned!
Another little excuse, or perhaps pity party I am going to invite you to… is that I have had quite a run disappointing meals. A combination of uninspired, not particularly photo worthy dishes, and with the sun setting before I leave lab has made it tricky.
But these are all excuses, I know. And I want to kick off 2013 with a delicacy that I was quite smitten with. On the day of New Years Eve, the boy suggested we have ourselves a little tea party. And what is a tea party without a proper tea set, petit fours, and finger sandwiches?! No tea party that I want to take part in. I started a few days in advance on the petit fours, since they turned out to be pretty labor intensive… but TOTALLY worth it. I’m not sure I have ever been so proud of something that I have made. They were just perfect. With those in tow, we set out the morning of New Years Eve to buy a tea set, and walked away with an adorable cast iron teapot and cups that looked good for temperature control. One more stop at the grocery store for finger sandwich ingredients, and we were on our way! Our little tea party went swimmingly. My fingers were the appropriate temperature the whole time and our cups didn’t conduct heat in such a way that burned our fingers one bit. Nope, went just how we planned and it was exactly what we wanted.
All of that being said, let’s get down to business. I will put it out there up front that these are labor intensive, but I promise you get each ounce of sweat back in pleasure upon seeing and tasting the finished product. And my oh my are they delicious and sinfully decant. Without really being sinful at all, as they are completely vegan! They are tiny little bundles of joy (I know, most people feel this way about kids… I feel this way about little cakes, no big). And I love them.
To the recipe!
Adapted from Vegan Yum Yum
For the Cake
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 2 ¼cups AP flour
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons earth balance
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup water
- ¾ cup almond milk
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- zest from 1 whole lemon
For the Filling
- 1 cup raspberry jam, warmed (I literally microwaved a car of smuckers)
For the Glaze
- 8 oz vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 tablespoons corn syrup
- ½ cup coconut oil
To make the cake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 12 x 17 jelly roll pan liberally.
- Sift together all of the dry ingredients (this is important as you want a light cake with a tight crumb).
- In a stand-up mixer, add in earth balance, lemon juice, and water and beat for 1 minute.
- Add the remaining ingredients and beat for 1 to 2 more minutes.
- Pour batter into jelly roll pan and bake for 30 minutes, or until lightly browned and the top springs back when you touch it.
- Allow to cool in pan for 5 minutes and then carefully transfer to cooling rack.
For the layering
- Cut off the crispy edges of the cake carefully using a serrated knife.
- Cut the cake into four quarters.
- Cut each quarter in half horizontally using a serrated knife and taking long slow strokes to ensure you are keeping the knife level and evenly cutting it in half.
- You should now have 8 even layers, each the size of a quarter of the cake.
- Take one layer and carefully spread on jam such that it is lightly and evenly coated and you can still see the cake peaking through.
- Top with another layer and repeat the jam application two more times.
- Top off with one final layer, so that you know have 4 layers of cake with 3 layers of jam.
- Repeat process with remaining layers of cake. You should now have 2 stacks about 1 ½ inches high, each the size of 1 quarter of the original cake and each with 4 layers of cake and 3 layers of jam (2 stacks x 4 layers = all original 8 layers are accounted for! Hooray math!)
- Carefully wrap each stack in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator overnight.
To transform them into petit fours
- Get your stacks out of the fridge.
- Measure a 1 ½ inch grid on the surface of each stack using a ruler(you should get 12 squares out of each stack and you will probably have to trim the sides a bit to make the stack exactly 4.5 inches across and 6 inches lengthwise).
- Cut the stack along those grid lines using your trusty serrated knife so that you have 24 total perfect 1 ½ inch cubes of layered caked.
- Melt the chocolate and coconut oil over the double boiler.
- Add corn syrup and stir until melted and blended.
- Set up your dipping stations:
- Bowl with melted chocolate
- Cooling rack with newspaper underneath
- Now, carefully dip each cube into the melted chocolate, side-by-side and finishing with the top, and then set onto cooling rack, with newspaper underneath to catch the dripping chocolate.
- Place in refridgerator to allow chocolate glaze to harden.
- Enjoy! I enjoyed mine with some green tea, tea cups that burned my fingers, and the best of company :-).