January for many signals the start of Veganuary and as such I was keen to share another vegan cake recipe. I love experimenting with vegan baking and my go-to cake is Nigella’s dark and scrumptious chocolate cake which always works well. Recently it was my Mum’s birthday and I wanted to bake an extra special vegan cake for her that celebrated seasonal flavours: enter this vegan chocolate pear and cardamom cake. Rich chocolate, fresh sweet pear and just a hint of spice. To make it, you will need:
1-2 pears, finely sliced
220g plain flour
40g cocoa powder
Half tsp cardamom (or more if you want more of a spicy hit)
Half tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
80ml maple syrup (I used half agave syrup, half maple)
160ml cold water
80ml sunflower oil
50g cocoa nibs (or you could mix them with chunks of chocolate, like I did)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Half tsp sea salt
Handful of hazelnuts, crushed
2 tsp brown sugar (to top).
Preheat the oven to 180C/ 160C Fan/ Gas 4/350F. Grease and line a 9 inch cake tin, dust with cocoa powder and shake off the excess. Add the flour, cocoa powder, salt, bicrabonate of soda, baking powder, cardamom and cocoa nibs to a bowl and mix to combine.
Add the maple syrup, oil, water, vanilla and vinegar to a separate bowl and mix to combine. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold together gently until combined.
Pour into the cake tin and top with the sliced pear, pressing it gently into the mixture. Sprinkle over the hazelnuts and brown sugar.
Bake for 35-40 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. Check at around 30 mins and cover the cake with tinfoil if it is starting to catch.
Allow to cool in the cake tin for at least 10-15 mins, then place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Delicious served with fresh cream.
Recipe via The Mother Cooker.