August has been my busiest month of the year so far and this coming weekend is going to be a little hectic finishing up three cakes and a small dessert table all for the same day. My brain is buzzing with all the things I need to get done and as daunted as I feel, I know that somehow everything will pull together ok. God-willing!
After the last few ‘heavier’ posts, I’m back with a new recipe that I played around with recently. It’s pretty healthy but fools the tastebuds into thinking they’re highly indulgent. The fudge factor is off the charts but there’s no butter, no eggs, no refined sugar and no oils involved. Also, I made them gluten free but normal flour works just as well, or spelt if you want to amp up the nutrition part a little.
Technically, they’re vegan but I happened to throw in some chocolate chips which alas, were non-vegan so I accidentally rendered them non-vegan-friendly. Still, if it matters to you, make sure you use vegan-friendly chocolate chips or switch the chocolate for some nuts if you fancy.
I promise I won’t be too long winded here. Instead, I’ll let the pictures of the talking – below are all my August cakes so far. Some were more challenging than others but all were incredibly satisfying upon completion. Also, while I can see so many ways in which I can make them better in future, e.g. the football cake, I’m proud of the work I’ve put into each cake and how they turned out.
This weekend, it’s another Peppa Pig cake, a stacked book fondant cake, and an ombre mint/teal cake with some one-bite goodies to go with on the dessert tables. I’m excited and anxious all at the same time. My birthday’s also coming up Friday but I think celebrations begin Thursday evening when Flo takes me out for dinner. Yay!
And while my coming weekend looks set to be buzzing with kitchen activity, I hope yours will be too with these oh-so-easy, one bowl vegan, optionally gluten-free, better-for-you brownies!
Avocado Brownies (Makes 1 8×8″ Square)
75g ripe avocado puree
240g coconut milk (or other non-dairy milk)
50g maple syrup
60g coconut sugar
50g cocoa powder
120g flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 GF Flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Dark chocolate chips (Use vegan if required)
- Preheat oven to 170deg C and line an 8×8″ baking tin – Ideally go for 7×7″ if you like your brownies thick.
- In a clean bowl, blend together avocado puree, maple syrup and coconut sugar.
- Fold in cocoa powder, flour, baking soda and salt until just incorporated.
- Fold in dark chocolate chips if using.
- Pour batter into prepared tin and bake for 15-18min. You’ll want to underbake it to retain all that fudgy goodness! Once baked, remove from oven and allow to cool before slicing.
I found these brownies to be the perfect level of sweetness for me but Dad felt that it could have done with a touch more sugar. So if you prefer your baked goodies a bit more on the sweeter side, then I suggest upping the quantity of sugar to about 75-80g.
I had these tried and tested by friends who don’t have any special dietary requirements and all gave their two thumbs up. Personally, I think these are one of the best tasting, best textured vegan, gluten-free brownies that I’ve tasted! I love my brownies dense and fudgy so these made perfect eating for me. All the more so knowing that what went into them were a lot healthier than the usual brownies I love getting stuck into usually. These are great alternatives for days when you want something rich without feeling guilty, and will be awesome for me this week when I need a sugar rush, especially going into all the birthday feasting!