Vegan love cake

Snowy love cake – healthier vegan blackcurrant curd and coconut cream layer cake recipe! Glutenfree or not… :)

17 comments
Healthier cakes and snacks, Special everyday cakes and treats, Vegan desserts

No fuss and healthier – we’re taking a retro step back to simpler times when everyone loved a Victoria sponge sandwich with jam and cream in the middle.  This lovely cake is a vegan take with tangy homemade blackcurrant or raspberry curd and silky coconut frosting.  You can also fill with jam.  The sponge is satisfying and curiously moreish.  The cake is lower sugar, with reduced quantities of icing sugar or light brown sugar and optional ground birch xylitol – it feels so light and delicious you can happily help yourself to a couple of slices and have some every day!  I’m not vegan but naturally appreciate ‘having my cake and eating it’ (two slices) and feeling great without going on a … you know, diet.  It’s not difficult to make and quite nice-looking in a wintry kind of way, this snowy love cake.  Tempted?

DSC_0861

Though it’s summer, a snowy cake is always welcome I think.  But do keep this recipe for Christmas too. 😉

This is an earlier prototype with raspberry curd.  Also super yummy, decorated with rose petals and freeze-dried raspberry pieces.

Healthier vegan raspberry, coconut and almond layer cake

RECIPE

Different types of soya yoghurts, glutenfree flours and sugars have varying degrees of lightness and texture.  So the quantity of milk you need is flexible.  Start with 50g/ml milk and use more if the batter’s too thick.

Using standard sugar and plain flour could give you a lighter fluffier cake.  But I really enjoy slightly healthier options.  Though initially concerned my cake was slightly denser than expected, in the end I loved it so much I wouldn’t change a thing!  There’s something to be said for a satisfying, extremely tasty sponge that holds its own with the fillings.

Snowy love vegan layer cake with blackcurrant curd and coconut buttercream

TIMINGS

Preparation:  make fruit curd in advance.  Chill can of coconut milk at least 24 hours before assembling cake.

On the day:  sponge (20 mins to make + 20-30 mins baking + 2-4 hours cooling); coconut buttercream (15 mins);  assembling cake (10-15 mins).

VEGAN BLACKCURRANT CURD

Blackcurrant curd

This is a fairly flexible recipe.  You can make it sweeter with more maple syrup or milder with more milk.  If you add more liquid, add a little extra cornflour too.  

Makes about 140-170g/1/2 cup

  • 3 tsp (8g) cornflour (cornstarch/Maizena)
  • 3 tsp (15g) mineral water
  • 92g/ml blackcurrant purée (if using Capfruit purée that already includes 10% sugar:  100g purée and 40g/2 tbsp pure maple syrup (or honey/sugar)
  • 50g/2 and 1/2 tbsp pure maple syrup (or honey/sugar), or more according to taste
  • 30g/ml almond milk (or other kind of milk) – for a milder cream try increasing quantity to 35-40g
  • 15g/1 tablespoon vegan butter (optional)

Follow the instructions in the illustrated recipe below, but with the quantities above.

Healthier blackcurrant curd (vegan) illustrated recipe

VEGAN ALMOND SPONGE

Preparation

  • grease (with vegan margarine) then flour a round (preferably spring-form) baking tin (16cm/6in diameter and 4.5cm/1.8in high); line with a round of baking paper on the base.
  • Preheat oven to 160ºC/320ºF (fan oven) or 180ºC/355ºF (static/non-convection)

WET INGREDIENTS

  • 100g/3.5oz soya yoghurt
  • 1/3 tsp cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 50g/ml almond milk or some other vegan milk

DRY INGREDIENTS

  • 125g/1 cup glutenfree flour (I used Doves Farm self-raising mix) or plain flour
  • 45g/1/5 cup light brown sugar
  • 35g/9 tsp ground xylitol
  • 25g/1/4 cup ground almonds
  • 1tsp/5g baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)

AT THE END

  • 67g/1/3 cup grapeseed oil, or some other light vegetable oil (like 4% cold-pressed olive oil)
  • If needed:  40-60g/ml extra almond milk (total: 90-110g/ml)

Method

  1. In a small-medium bowl, whisk soya yoghurt, cider vinegar, milk, almond extract and vanilla.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk dry ingredients briefly to combine:  flour, sugar, xylitol (if using), ground almonds, baking powder and sodium bicarbonate.
  3. Briefly whisk oil into wet ingredients.
  4. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in wet ingredients.  Slowly stir with a whisk until you get a smooth batter.  Gradually add more milk if needed to get a dropping consistency where the batter is still thick enough to hold some shape.  TO TEST DROPPING CONSISTENCY:  lift a big spoon of batter up over the bowl and let the batter fall – it should slowly make it’s way down the spoon and eventually decide to drop off down to the bowl, leaving some on the spoon. If it refuses to leave the spoon and drop off, you should gradually stir in a little more milk until it reaches ‘dropping consistency’.  Don’t make it so liquid that it just runs off.
  5. Fill prepared cake mould to 3/4 full (or almost to top).
  6. Bake 20 to 30 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.  If you press top lightly with your finger it should spring back slightly.
  7. Allow to cool 10 minutes then carefully unmould.  Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before filling.

LOWER SUGAR COCONUT FROSTING

Vegan silky coconut buttercream

  • 175g/3/4 cup (6oz) coconut cream from top of can of coconut milk chilled in fridge overnight or at least 24 hours
  • 50g/1/4 cup vegetable shortening like Crisco’s (or vegan margarine)
  • 35g/1/4 cup + 1 and 1/2 tsp icing (powdered) sugar, to taste
  • 15g/4 tsp ground birch xylitol (or icing sugar)
  • 10g/ml almond milk (or some other vegetable milk) – omit if your frosting is liquid enough
  • scant 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • optional 2 tsp warm water if frosting curdles/separates

Whisk coconut cream and shortening until creamy.  Whisk in remaining ingredients until you get a silky frosting.  If it separates then try warming the bowl over heat and whisking vigorously.  If that doesn’t work, add 1 or 2 tsp warm water and whisk well until you get that really lovely silky frosting.  Don’t give up – it will happen.

ASSEMBLING

  • 3-4 tablespoons almond milk mixed with a few drops of vanilla extract
  • About 140-150g/1/2 cup blackcurrant or raspberry curd
  • Coconut frosting
  • Enough dessicated coconut to cover sides and top of cake (a few handfuls)

Snowy love vegan layer cake. assembling

Slice cake in half horizontally.  Brush bottom half of sponge with a little almond milk to moisten.  Spread layer of fruit curd on top.  Spread coconut frosting over this (you can pipe it on).  Brush top half of sponge with almond milk then place on base.  Cover top with a layer of frosting.  Scrape a thin layer of frosting around the sides with a metal spatula knife or pastry scraper, for that naked cake effect.  Use hand to carefully press in dessicated coconut around the cake.  Tada!

Snowy love vegan layer cake with blackcurrant curd and coconut buttercream

Snowy love vegan layer cake

Storing

This cake keeps really well in airtight tupperware in the fridge for up to 4 or 5 days.  It was all eaten and never made it to the freezer but I imagine slices would freeze fine up to a few months, wrapped in film or in tupperware.

I’m looking forward to making this cake again some time.  I miss it!  Could make the raspberry curd version again.

Healthier vegan raspberry, coconut and almond layer cake

Healthier raspberry curd vegan layer cake

Though I do really love blackcurrant too.  And though it’s summer and getting pretty hot here in Barcelona, it’s kind of soothing looking at this snowy love cake!  

Snowy love vegan layer cake with blackcurrant curd and coconut buttercream

Snowy love vegan layer cake

Hope you’ve enjoyed this vegan adventure and will accept a slice.

Snowy love vegan layer cake with blackcurrant curd and coconut buttercream

Wishing you a lovely week dear reader – the weekend’s coming soon!  As always, happy baking, no-baking and eating! 🙂 Lili x

Posted by

Baking on Sundays with my French mum was a lovely part of my childhood. Later I experimented with baking books or internet recipes and did the pâtisserie course at Le Cordon Bleu Paris. Still trying out new recipes and inventing cakes with influences from all around the world, including some healthier ones. Yes, love cakes!!! Hope you'll love them too and have fun baking. :)

17 thoughts on “Snowy love cake – healthier vegan blackcurrant curd and coconut cream layer cake recipe! Glutenfree or not… :)”

    • Aw thanks Mary, that’s really nice to know 😍 I’m not vegan but it’s great when people are. Doing ok, teaching online, not travelling much, but can’t complain (still have cake to eat 😉). How are you doing? Well I hope. x

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve spent a fair bit of my lockdown knitting, Lili. Scarves, jumpers, and hot water bottle covers. I’d lost a fair bit of weight before the pandemic hit, so as the gyms were closed first thing every lockdown, I collected the recipes for better times but stayed right away from baking. 🤭💋

        Liked by 1 person

      • Knitting sounds great Mary, very therapeutic and nice collection of stuff too! Though hopefully you can get back to the gym and baking at some point … ? 😉 xx

        Like

      • Don Reba says:

        I did! For a vegan friend’s birthday this Saturday. Doesn’t look quite as good as yours; will know how it tastes soon enough. 😄

        Liked by 1 person

      • Don Reba says:

        It turned out well and got lots of compliments! I was myself surprised by how good the vegan sponge was. Just the blackcurrant curd was a little too sweet for my taste — I would use the milder version with more milk next time.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m so happy your cake went down so well! That’s really cool. Agreed, that vegan sponge is surprising.

        For the blackcurrant curd, it can be pretty powerful – I guess now you’ve made it once, tasting as you go along and adding more milk can help to get that flavour you prefer. Otherwise, there’s always the option of making it with raspberries.

        Anyway, thanks so much for the feedback! It was so nice to hear your thoughts. xx

        Like

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