Sunday, February 21, 2016

Vanilla Lavender Cake...

I wanted to make a nice dessert for Valentine's Day, but none of the recipes I looked at appealed to me. Everything was chocolate this and chocolate that, everything was heavy, decadent and 'romantic' I'm okay with the romance but everything being pink or red, and everything being chocolate was a bit overwhelming and overdone to me. I wanted something lighter, that was fun, fluffy, and romantic, yet light, and springy. I kept coming back to the idea of something 'floral' which seemed to really fit the bill in my mind. I thought vanilla rose, only I didn't have any rose petals, and then I remembered the Lavender extract I picked up at the Botanical Garden last summer. I was further reminded that I still had a lot of leftover lavender from when I made a lavender Chocolate cake a while back.

Suddenly everything clicked. Vanilla is light, but a bit boring on it's own, Lavender really jazzes it up and breaths new life into an otherwise ordinary cake. I do not normally use food coloring but considering it was Valentine's Day and I wanted the color of the frosting to match the mood and the romance I decided to give in, and I'm glad, I think it really heightens the overall presentation and makes you feel like you're eating something special.

Vanilla Lavender Cake

3 Cups All Purpose Flour
2 Cups Sugar
2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp salt
1 3/4 C Vanilla Almond Milk
1 C Canola Oil
1/4 C Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
4 Tbsp Dried Culinary Lavender

- Preheat Oven to 350'F and grease two cake pans.

- Mix the dry ingredients into a bowl. Whisk the Wet Ingredients1 together in a measuring cup.

- Make a well in the center of the dry mix, pour the liquid in and stir to combine but do not over mix.

- Divide the batter between the two pans and bake in the oven for 25-35 minutes.

Lavender Frosting

1/2 C Earth Balance
1/2 C Coconut Oil
3 C Powdered Sugar
1 tsp Lavender Extract
2-3 Tbsp Almond Milk
6 Drops Red Food Coloring
4 Drops Blue Food Coloring

- Combine the Earth Balance and the Coconut Oil in a medium sized bowl and blend it together using a hand mixer.

- Add in the powdered sugar and blend until smooth.

- Add in the extract, almond milk and food coloring. You may have to tweak the number of coloring drops you put in to get the right kind of purple.

Assemble -

Place one cake on a plate. Frost the top with a generous amount of lavender frosting. Place the second cake on top and use the remaining frosting to frost the top and sides of the entire cake. Serve and enjoy!

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