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baking, cooking, and other adventures

Vegan Adventure #19 and VeganMofo #4 October 6, 2008

Filed under: Baking,Cake,Vegan — pastrybrush @ 7:00 am
Tags: , , , , ,

Ever since I was at work about a month ago and saw fresh figs in the fridge, I wanted to find some and make something nice and sweet.  Of course my grocery store wasn’t carrying them at the time and the only place I could go to get them was Costco, but you need a membership to shop there.  That went out the window really quick.  On Tuesday I was wandering around the grocery store and was in the produce section and noticed a small container of fresh figs.

THIS IS MY CHANCE!!!

I look through all of the packages and most of them have a moldy fig in there, gross :/  I finally find the one container with no moldy figs and purchase it.  By the time I decided I was going to use the figs a few of mine were starting to mold.  I ended up half the amount of figs that I puchased after throwing away the moldy ones.  So I figured I would search for a recipe and then scale it down so I could use the 5 figs that I had left.

I googled fresh fig recipes and didn’t come up with anything that sounded great to me and most of the recipes called for dried.  I wanted to show case how pretty the inside of a fig is and possible put it in a cake.  I searched for about an hour and came up empty handed.  Out of nowhere in the middle of the night I had an idea.  Instead of a Pineapple Upside Down Cake I would make a Fig Upside Down Cake.  I have made many pineapple upside down cakes.  I have made it from box mix and from scratch in a cast iron pan.

All of a sudden I had a flashback of watching Alton Brown make a Pineapple Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake and I knew that that was the recipe that I would be using.  Since I only had a small amount of figs I knew that I would be scaling this was down from the 10 inch cast iron pan to two 4.5″ round springform pans.  From the volumes that both of these pans hold I figured that I would have to divide Alton’s recipe by one-third, which was a little difficult for some of the ingredients.  While I was writing down the recipe in its scaled down version, I knew that I needed to substitute some of the ingredients so that it would match the flavor of figs.  Then I decided that this recipe would be great as a vegan recipe and I wouldn’t have to change much.  Below is the modifications that I ended up making.

  • Substituted
    • Rice Milk for Whole Milk
    • Vegan Margarine instead of Unsalted Butter
    • Figs for Pineapples
    • Orange Juice for Pineapple Juice
    • Walnuts for Pecans
    • Apple Sauce for eggs
  • Added
    • Vanilla Extract
    • Almond Extract
    • Cinnamon

The cake tasted interesting.  It reminded me of when I used to eat cornbread as a kid and drizzle it with honey.  It had that same flavor.  The cake part was very moist and tasted like a nice sweet cornbread with a hint of cinnamon.  The topping was nice.  It was gooey and sweet.  It actually might be a little too sweet sometimes.  Maybe next time i will go with the traditional cake instead of a cornmeal cake, but I would definitely make it again.

Fig Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake (Scaled down version)

Modified by Pastrybrush from Alton Brown’s Pineapple Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake

1/4 cup rice milk

1/3 cup cornmeal

1 1/2 tbsp non hydrogenated vegan margarine

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

5 Fresh Black MIssion Figs, sliced verticle in 4 pieces or in half

4 tsp orange juice

1 oz finely chopped walnuts

1/4 cup apple sauce

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 + 1/8 tsp baking powder

pinch salt

1/4 cup sugar

2 tbsp + 2 tsp canola oil

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

1/8 tsp almond extract

pinch cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease two 4.5″ round springform pans.

In a microwave-proof dish, bring the rice milk to a boil. Remove the rice milk from the microwave and add the cornmeal. Stir and let soak at room temperature for 30 minutes. Set aside.

Melt the margarine in a small skillet over medium heat. Once the margarine has melted, add the brown sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and divide the mixture into both of the greased 4.5″ springform pans.  Don’t worry if some of the liquid comes out of the bottom of the pan. Place the sliced figs in a layer on the bottom.  Sprinkle the nuts evenly over the fruit. Drizzle orange juice over the top.

Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the apple sauce, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, cinnamon and canola oil until combined. Add the cornmeal and milk mixture to the apple sauce mixture and whisk to combine. Add this to the flour and stir just until combined. Pour the batter over the fruit in the small springform pans.  Place the pans on a baking sheet lined with parchment or foil and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes in the pan. Set a platter on top of the pan and carefully invert the cake. Serve.

Fig Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake

Modified by Pastrybrush from Alton Brown’s Pineapple Upside-Down Cornmeal Cake

3/4 cup rice milk

1 cup coarse ground cornmeal

4 oz non hydrogenated vegan margarine

8 oz dark brown sugar, approximately 1 cup

15 Fresh Black Mission Figs, halved

1/3 cup chopped walnuts

3 tbsp orange juice

3/4 cup apple sauce

4 3/4 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 1 cup

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

5 3/4 ounces sugar, approximately 3/4 cup

1/2 cup canola oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp almond extract

1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 9″ round cake pan.

In a microwave-proof dish, bring the rice milk to a boil. Remove the rice milk from the microwave and add the cornmeal. Stir and let soak at room temperature for 30 minutes. Set aside.

Melt the margarine in a small skillet over medium heat. Once the margarine has melted, add the brown sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and pour the mixture into a greased 9″ cake pan  Place the sliced figs in a layer on the bottom.  Sprinkle the nuts evenly over the fruit. Drizzle orange juice over the top.

Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

In a separate mixing bowl, whisk the apple sauce, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, cinnamon and canola oil until combined. Add the cornmeal and milk mixture to the apple sauce mixture and whisk to combine. Add this to the flour and stir just until combined. Pour the batter over the fruit in the skillet and bake for 40 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes in the pan. Set a platter on top of the pan and carefully invert the cake. Serve.

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2 Responses to “Vegan Adventure #19 and VeganMofo #4”

  1. Brenna Says:

    Those cakes are gorgeous!

  2. bex Says:

    I have fresh figs in my frige just waiting to be used, I’m thinking fig & pear pie but now I am being tempted by your cakes.


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