14 Nov 2013

RAW VEGAN CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES with VANILLA CREAM FILLING


I saw this picture of some Hostess cupcakes on Tumblr awhile ago and figured I'd better make a raw and vegan version because... why not. Although I never ate the infamous baked treats before I became vegan, their imagery still managed to infiltrate my eyesight; good marketing does that. If you're not familiar with what I am talking about, Hostess cupcakes are just chocolate cupcakes filled with a vanilla cream, and topped off with chocolate frosting and an endearing little swirl of the vanilla cream.


Sadly, they're full of all the crappiest-quality ingredients you could possibly put together. Seriously - no one is living longer or fighting cancer by eating these guys. Fortunately, apart from their appearance, this recipe is the exact opposite, plus it probably tastes better (I'm a little biased though). The ingredients include dates, oats, cashews, coconut oil and cacao powder. Google any of those and you will see that they are all excellent for you. Hehehe. Sometimes it feels like the world is almost too good to us.


Here's a run down of the recipe: the cupcake part is made up of oats, date and cacao powder; the vanilla cream filling is mostly cashews and coconut oil; and the chocolate frosting is cacao powder, almond butter and whatever sweetener you like. My frosting skills are lacking, as you can tell by the pathetic swirls I failed at creating. I had to use a hoisin sauce bottle, okay? No fancy piping bags in THIS kitchen, we do it thrifty-style. Of course, it doesn't actually matter what your swirls look like, since they're all gonna taste equally delicious and wholesome.


When I made these they were very sweet and rich (almost too much so, and for me that is saying a LOT) so in the recipe I typed up here, I lessened the amounts of sweeteners. But as always: you can - and should - adjust the recipe to suit your tastes/available ingredients/whatever. Note: you will have leftover vanilla cashew cream... I assume this will not be a problem.


CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES WITH VANILLA CREAM FILLING

Cupcakes:
1 cup oats
1 cup dates
2 tablespoons cacao powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Vanilla cream filling:
1 cup cashews 
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup water
1-2 tablespoons coconut nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Chocolate frosting:
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon cacao powder
1 tablespoon coconut nectar (or other sweetener)

To make the cupcakes: pulse the oats in a food processor until they become flour-like. Add the rest of the ingredients and process until it all sticks together. Press into lined cupcake tins and indent a thumbprint in the middle of each one for the vanilla cream. Put in the fridge.

To make the vanilla cream: blend all the ingredients together until smooth. Scoop a spoonful into each of the indents you made in the cupcakes. You'll have lots left over. Put the cupcakes back in the fridge.

To make the chocolate frosting: mix together all the ingredients until smooth. Let it re-solidify just enough so that you have a frosting consistency. Frost the top of the cupcakes and then using a piping bag, decorate the tops of your cupcakes with the vanilla cream. Eat right away or within 1-2 weeks.