Orange Chocolate Cake and Autumn Gathering with The Little Plantation

Chocolate cakes are always a crowd pleaser, but among the classics this vegan orange chocolate cake distinguish itself for its plant based twist ( that you wouldn't expect), and the silkiest oil-free chocolate frosting you can dream of. As per usual any project I do with Kimberly @thelittleplantation comes out as a great one.

And we take the opportunity here, to also say that the booking for our new Autumn Gathering supperclubis now open. The supperclub is on the 18th of November at Rye London, !

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The Autumn Gathering will be have a completely new theme. We bring together East and West flavours, in a homey but stylish way. As I normally cook like this at home, I guess it is for me a way to welcome you at my own table.

The practicalities here, kindly organized in a text by Kimberly. (She clearly lead the organization between us!)

Where: Rye London, 8A Stamford Works, Gillet St, London, N16 8JH

Transport: about a 5-7 minute walk from Dalston Junction Station and a 3 minute walk from Dalston Kingsland Station. Parking free after 7pm.

How to book: via Eventbrite
Cost: £45/pp
Discounts: early bird offer 5% off (book by 08/10/17)

We are now offering mailing list subscribers a 10% early bird discount (book by 22/10/17). To claim your discount, please subscribe to the mailing list at the bottom of the post BUT remember to e-mail me here through the blog form to advise how many tickets you need. 

Special diets: There will be many gluten-free dishes on the menu. For details and any other dietary requirements, please get in touch! We will be happy to accommodate your needs!

For the Menu: here
Further questions: please contact me here

And for the cake recipe ...further down this post! Cannot wait to see your versions of this cake, but most of all, to see you at tour Autumn Gathering!

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Baking time: 35-40 minutes (for the sponge)
Cooking time: 45 minutes (for the frosting)
Cooling time: 3 hours (for the frosting)

Makes: a 4-tier layer cake

 

INGREDIENTS FOR THE SPONGE:

600g plain flour
400g coconut blossom sugar
4tbs fair trade cacao
4tsp bicarbonate of soda
a good pinch of salt
200g of dark vegan chocolate (70% cacao and upwards)
450ml almond milk
150g coconut oil (melted) + extra for greasing (or Olive oil)
4tbs ground flax seeds + 12tbs water
2-3 large oranges(organic or un-waxed)

INGREDIENTS FOR THE FROSTING:

2kg sweet potatoes
350g cacao powder (or more to taste)
1/3 cup rice syrup or vegan maple syrup (or raw sugar if you know you want it very sweet)
1 tsp pure vanilla essence
Grated rid of 1 orange (organic or un-waxed) mandatory

METHOD:

Preheat the oven to 200C. Grease 4 round cake tins (16cm each)  with coconut oil and set aside.

In a small bowl, mix together the ground flax seed and water with a spoon and set aside.
In a large bowl mix together the dry ingredients: the flour, sugar, bicarb of soda and salt.

Take the chocolate and with a knife or grater, break it into little, thin pieces. The finer, the better.
Place the grated chocolate into a large bowl and mix it with the wet ingredients: the almond milk, melted coconut oil and flax seed mixture. Add the juice of the oranges, grate in the rid of the oranges and combine.

Next gently fold the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients until nicely combined. Though be sure not to overmix!
Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared cake tins and place into the oven immediately. Bake for approximately 35-40 minutes. (Do a toothpick test after 35 minutes, the cake needs to be cooked through but not dry).


Whilst the cake is baking in the oven prepare the chocolate icing by peel+cut the sweet potatoes into chunks, placing them in a steamer pot with water and steaming them until they are soft and fully cooked through (about 45 minutes).
Let the sweet potato cool.

If the cake is ready, remember to remove it from the oven now, let it cool. (Once cool remove any uneven tops gently with a sharp knife, so that the cake layers are relatively flat and even).

Finish the icing by placing the sweet potato together with the cacao powder and syrup in a blender and blend until smooth. Taste and add more sugar/cacao until you obtain the level of chocolate-ness and sweetness you desire (take care to do not make the frosting too lose adding too much syrup - if you feel the vegetable taste in the frosting, and it bothers you, add more cocoa powder and some orange rid).
Place in the fridge for at least 3 hours before you start icing the cake.

Ice the cake by spooning frosting on top of the first sponge layer. Use a ice cream scoop to measure about the same amount of filling between layers. Spread evenly. Then place the second cake sponge layer on top of the first one. Frost evenly and continue until all 4 have been placed on top of each other. The last cake needs to be placed upside down so the top of the cake is nice and straight.
Scoop some frosting on the top of the last cake and with a spatula spread to the edges and down to the layers, filling any gaps between them. Smooth the side and and gently scrap away any excess. You do not need to cover the full cake, it will remain "naked" with a rustic look. But if you prefer a completely covered cake you should have enough frosting to do so.

We decorated our with oranges and clementines. But white flowers, chocolate bliss ball and many more ideas can be used, up to you!

*Any leftover frosting can be froze. The cake too.
*We also tested the frosting with roasted sweet potatoes and it works as well. Bake the potatoes whole skin-on for 45 min- oven 180°-200°C.
*I don't recommend using grain milk in place of nut milk, as I tried and the cake comes out dry. If nut sensitive I would suggest something rich as soya milk , hemp milk, or coconut milk (if possible). Of course dairy milk works too.
*if sensitive to coconut extra virgin olive oil works brilliantly, or any good quality oil of your choice.
*the frosting needs the orange rid to cover the sweet potatoes taste.
*if you know the you want thefrosting very sweet add raw unrefined sugar or xylitol to it instead that liquid sweetener to prevent it to get too runny.

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