Vegan oatmeal pancakes, vegan strawberry-white chocolate cake

I did a fair amount of baking and cooking today, and most of it turned out well. Saturdays tend to be pancake day in our house, and I’m always trying to perfect the vegan pancake, yet keep it fairly healthy.  I thought the ones I made today turned out very well! The girls and husband loved them, and I enjoyed a few cold (my favorite!) after taking a leisurely 3-mile run with Shadow.

Here’s the approximate recipe:

3/4 oatmeal, ground into flour (I used my new Magic Bullet to do this)

1/2 cup white flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon ground flax seed (again, the Magin Bullet works well here)

2 cups liquid – I used 1 cup almond milk and 1 cup water

1 tablespoon oil

a dash of vanilla

1 tablespoon baking powder

Method:

Mix dry ingredients, except for the baking powder. Stir in the wet ingredients and mix very lightly, then add the baking powder and mix again very lightly. The batter will seem very runny, but don’t worry- the oatmeal absorbs liquid as it sits.

Let the batter sit for 5-10 minutes. In the meantime, heat up a skillet – I LOVE using a cast-iron skillet for pancakes.

Pour about 1/4 cup batter per pancake; flip when bubbly, and make sure you flip only once! Enjoy with some Earth Balance and maple syrup, or however you like.

Later in the day I made some chili, which also a hit with the girls. It was super easy and super healthy; I’ll write that recipe down soon. I also made a batch of bagels. One of my goals for the new year was to perfect the art of bagel-making. I grew up in the urban northeast, and now live in the rural south (long story, best saved for another time), and I am generally displeased with the bagels we can get here. The ones in the grocery store are just dreadful. There’s one great bagel bakery but it is an hour away from us. When we go, we buy dozens and freeze them. However, I decided it was time to return to bagel-making, both because I like a challenge and as a method for saving money and freezer space. I’ve made about 5 batches so far this year, each better than the one before it, but none perfect so far. I’ll post the perfect recipe when I discover it 🙂

However, my oldest daugher (3) had a birthday party today, at which there were strawberry cupcakes – not vegan, of course. So I came home and make a strawberry-vanilla-white chocolate cake. Seriously, is there ANYTHING better than cake with plenty of vanilla and white chocolate and strawberries, and a hint of almond??? I’ll try to post pictures tomorrow but here’s the recipe.

Cake:

3 cups flour – I used 1 whole wheat, 2 white

1 1/2 cup sugar, or slightly less

1 teaspoon salt

1 stick vegan margarine, melted

2 cups liquid – I used a combination of almond milk and water

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 and grease 2 round cake pans.

Mix dry ingredients, except for baking powder. Stir in wet ingredients and stir until well mixed. Add baking powder and mix lightly. Pour into prepared pans; bake at 350 until light brown, about 20-25 minutes.

White chocolate filling: (you could skip this or just use more frosting, below)

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1/2 cup vegan white chocolate chips

2 tablespoons sugar syrup (agave, maple, brown rice, corn – whatever you have)

Melt oil; add in chips and melt, stirring constantly. Add in syrup when chips are melted and stir until all ingredients are incorporated.

Strawberries:

1 cup fresh strawberries (or frozen) (or more if you like)

1 teaspoon sugar

Slice strawberries; sprinke with sugar; let them sit a few minutes to release the juices.

Frosting:

2 tablespoons vegan margarine

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

a tablespoon or so almond milk (or soy milk)

Melt margarine; stir in all other ingredients, mix well.

Assembly:

Using a trifle bowl, put one of the cake layers in the bottom. Cover with half the strawberries, and drizzle the berries with half of the white chocolate mixture. Slice the other cake layer in half, and put half on top of the first layer. Cover with the rest of the strawberries, drizzle with the rest of the white chocolate mixture, and cover with the last half layer of cake. Top with the frosting. YUM!

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