Friday, March 22, 2013

Chocolate Orange Liqueur Cake

This is a variation upon my standard family Chocolate Applesauce Cake, as requested by my dad for his birthday this year. You can do without the Sabra, if you like -- just substitute more orange juice or soymilk / water as you see fit.

Chocolate Applesauce Cake (with orange liqueur infusion!)

Makes 1 double-layer cake

3 Cups flour
1 1/2 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

2 Cup applesauce (unsweetened, if possible)
1/2 Cup water
1/4 Cup Sabra orange chocolate liqueur (or more OJ)
1/4 Cup orange juice (or more Sabra)
1/3 Cup cooking oil (or olive oil -- I'm beginning to enjoy using this when baking!)
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit (180 C).  Grease and flour two cake-pans (8" square or round).  Mix all ingredients together and pour into pan.  Bake 30-35 minutes (don't over-bake! this is a GREAT moist cake!), or until toothpick comes out clean. Remember that while the cake will puff significantly in the middle, once it cools, the cake will flatten back down. You're welcome to drizzle 1 - 2 tsp of the Sabra on the surface of each cake if you feel so inclined.

Orange Chocolate Buttercream

1 Cup (2 sticks) Earth Balance or other vegan margarine/butter
2 Cups confectioner's sugar
1/2 Cup cocoa powder (unsweetened)

4 Tbsp orange juice
2 Tbsp finely grated orange zest
2 tsp vanilla extract

Cream together the Earth Balance, cocoa powder, and 1/2 Cup of the sugar. Add 1 Tbsp of orange juice, then another 1/2 Cup of sugar. Repeat this back-and-forth procedure until all the juice and sugar are incorporated. Either beat vigorously with a fork until the frosting is creamy and fluffy, or use a mixer. Add the orange zest and vanilla extra, and voila! You're done!

Now top one layer of the cake with a hearty, thick portion of the buttercream (almost, but not quite, half the batch of frosting), then add the second layer of cake on top, frost that, and then cover the sides. Yum! Some orange sprinkles would look cute on top of this.

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