I’m sure some sort of colourful vegan mini eggs exist, but the first vegan eggs I found when I decided to do an easter recipe were standard dark chocolate ones. As I knew I wanted to make some easter nests, I decided to twist the traditional recipe slightly because although chocolate eggs on a chocolate nest would certainly taste good, it didn’t offer the contrast in colours that easter nests usually have (and I’m certainly a believer of the saying you ‘eat with your eyes’).
Instead of a chocolate easter nest, I’ve gone for coconut caramel. The use of coconut cream really thickens up the caramel and gives a smooth, creamy and rich sauce that pairs beautifully with the bitterness of the dark chocolate eggs. If you’re not able to get a carton of coconut cream, leave a can of coconut milk upside down in the fridge overnight. When you come to make the easter nests, scoop out the thick cream from the top of the can.
This recipe is definitely one of the simpler sweet recipes I’ve shared on my blog, and this plus the easter theme means it’s the perfect recipe to make with children during one of April’s showers!
Every time I tweak my vegan cupcake recipe I think it’s my best one ever, so there have been quite few declarations of “No, this is definitely my final cupcake recipe!” throughout the past few months. However, I feel quite confident saying that this chocolate cupcake recipe is now my go-to one, and I finally feel like it doesn’t need any further changes. It originally came about as a modified version of my mini three tier cherry chocolate cake recipe, and I’ve used it to make many a birthday cupcake since, so I thought it was about time it appeared on the blog. The addition of vanilla icing and vegan honeycomb pieces make these chocolate honeycomb cupcakes an extremely indulgent and tasty treat!
I went vegan in April 2015, so tomorrow is only my second pancake day as a vegan. Last year, I played it safe and went for some traditional crepe style pancakes served with lemon and sugar. This year, however, I wanted to go for a slightly more exciting pancake, and so I started working on a pancake recipe ahead of the day so that I knew the recipe would be perfected in time for pancake day! I love any kind of sweet dish that oozes gooey chocolate, so chocolate chip pancakes were a given. However, when I went to make chocolate chip pancakes, I spied our 1 kg tub of peanut butter sitting on the side, and decided peanut butter needed to be added to the mix too! These peanut butter chocolate chip pancakes are easy to make, and taste great served with extra chocolate and peanut butter on top, as well as your favourite fruit.
Do you ever have those days where just nothing you try in the kitchen goes right? I had one of those days when I started making these cookies. The cookies themselves were fine – they looked and tasted delicious! I was then originally going to coat them in melted dark chocolate and leave to set. But I just could not melt chocolate successfully – my makeshift bain marie really failed me that day! I ended up eating lumpy half melted dark chocolate and shoving the cookies in the freezer, vowing to try again another day.
However, it ended up being a blessing in disguise, as I decided that the flavour of the dark chocolate would end up overpowering the subtle rose flavour. Instead, I thought I’d incorporate the rose water into an icing and top with freeze dried strawberries. And so these strawberry rose cookies were borne. Mine are heart shaped, to fit in with this week’s Valentine’s theme, but you can cut these into any shape you like if you’re not making them for your Valentine.
Not so long ago I posted a recipe for a salted caramel apple pie. When I first tested the recipe for that, I ended up with leftover salted caramel sauce, so I had think about what other sweet treat I could come up with to use it up. I’d been planning to make my chocolate orange brownies that weekend, so instead decided to combine the two to make salted caramel chocolate brownies.
The gooey-ness of the salted caramel chocolate brownies combined with the crunchy topping of the salted pretzels makes for an interesting and tasty texture combination.
I’m not usually fond of sweet and salty flavour combinations (don’t get me started on sweet and salty popcorn!) but with salted caramel it’s just right, you know? In fact, this is a flavour combination that pops up quite frequently when I’m making desserts (see my recipe for salted caramel pretzel cheesecakes).
This recipe makes two individual salted caramel apple pies (quite large individual portions, but aren’t those the best kind?!) and so if you want to make a standard sized pie you can just double up the recipe, although one pack of pastry might still do the job. Peeling the apples instead of chopping them allows the caramel sauce to permeate every part of the filling, so there’s no bite without that sweet and salty caramel flavour! The pies are best served with vegan ice cream – I recommend vanilla Swedish Glace with a drizzle of salted caramel sauce, if you have any left.
The natural sweetness of pistachio pairs really well with the slight bitterness of dark chocolate. For a while I had been testing recipes that combined these two flavours, but none of them were quite right until I tried this one. Don’t make the error I made – you can buy pistachios that are already shelled and skinned. I didn’t realise this until I’d tested the recipe several times and spent too many hours of my life shelling and skinning pistachios!
For the cake:
6 tablespoons aquafaba*
100g caster sugar
150g self raising flour
25g cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons soy milk
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
For the cherry jam:
150g frozen cherries
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon chia seeds
For the icing:
25g vegetable shortening
25g vegan butter
85g icing sugar
15g cocoa powder
1 tablespoon soy milk
*Aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas.
300g plain flour
150g caster sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
150g vegan butter (melted)
3 tablespoons aquafaba*
50g dried cranberries
100g vegan white chocolate (chopped/ crushed into small pieces)
3 cups oats
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
4 tablespoons maple syrup (or sub any other liquid sweetener)
3 tablespoons aquafaba
Zest of 1 orange
1/3 cup chocolate chips