Fran Costigan means business with a tag line like “Unapologetically Luscious and Decadent Dairy-Free Desserts” from her Vegan Chocolate Cookbook. Make sure you read all the way to the bottom and enter with a chance to win a copy of your own!
Fran has detailed instructions – plus an intro chapter all about ingredients and equipment. There are chapters with recipes for truffles, cakes, cookies, bars, pies, puddings, confections and frozen desserts. The book is filled with beautiful photos with precise instructions that give you a baking education and you end up with a chocolate dessert – what more could you want?
Next on my to-try list: Moon Pies, Orange Olive Oil Cake, Black-bottomed Cupcakes – then I want to try and tackle the Opera cake.
If you can’t have gluten be sure to try out my Gluten Free Vegan Teff Brownies!
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon organic all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup organic whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup minus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup organic whole cane sugar, ground in a blender until powdered
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot or organic cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons mild tasting extra-virgin olive oil or organic neutral vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup, Grade B or dark amber
- 1/4 cup any nondairy milk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon chocolate extract, optional
- Heaping 1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips or mini chunks
- 1/3 cup lightly toasted walnuts or mixed nuts, coarsely chopped (optional)
- Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350° F. Oil an 8 x 8-inch square pan and then line the bottom with parchment paper. Do not oil the paper.
- Place a wire mesh strainer over a medium bowl. Add the all-purpose flour, pastry flour, cocoa, granulated sugar, whole cane sugar, arrowroot or cornstarch, baking powder, and salt to the strainer and stir with a whisk to sift the ingredients into the bowl. (If any small bits remain in the strainer, add them to the mixture in the bowl.) Whisk to aerate the mixture.
- Whisk the oil, maple syrup, nondairy milk, vanilla, and chocolate extract, if using, in a separate medium bowl until completely combined. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix with a silicone spatula until the batter, which will be thick, is smooth. Allow the batter to rest for ten minutes.
- Stir the chocolate chips and nuts, if using, into the batter. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, and spread into an even layer with a metal spatula.
- Bake for 23 minutes until the top is set and dry and the sides have pulled just slightly away from the pan.
- Remove the pan from the oven and set on a cooling rack. Immediately insert a wooden tester diagonally into the brownies. The tester will be coated with batter, but not wet. If necessary, bake for another minute.
- Cool to room temperature. The middle of the cake will sink as it cools; don’t worry. Once cold you can push the sides down to level the cake if you like. Refrigerate until very cold before cutting into squares.
Refrigerate the brownies in a covered container, in layers separated by parchment, for up to three days, or freeze for up to one month. Defrost unwrapped or eat straight out of the freezer.
Recipe reprinted with permission from Vegan Chocolate: Unapologetically Luscious and Decadent Dairy-Free Desserts, © 2013 by Fran Costigan, Running Press