Friday, July 18, 2008

Make Up Post

I haven't posted in a while, but I'll try to catch up now.

In May, I made this cake for my oldest daughter's birthday. Vegan chocolate with a peanut butter buttercream. My daughter loved it!
The cake and the frosting were so good, I made this flavor combo into cupcake for a friend's bridal shower.
Here's a Plum-Strawberry Crisp I made for a dinner party. The recipe's from Veganomicon. I sub'ed the sugar with maple sugar and baked in the individual cups to make it more special. The anise seeds in the crumble are genius and delicious.
Lately I haven't been baking as much. I've been really concentrating on preparing more raw recipes. Here are my early exeriments.

This is an Almond-Coconut-Date Shake made with the milk and meat of a young coconut, dates and raw almond butter. On the top is a mix I bought premade over at Juliano's. It's made with dried goji berries, raw cacoa nibs, coconut shavings and raw nuts. Fantastic!This is a Raw Thai Coconut Soup. I serve it slightly warmed and it is delicious!

Monday, April 28, 2008

This Week's Baking

My youngest daughter turned nine last week and I made my latest creation for her party: Vegan Chinese Five Spice Icing on Almond Cake with a Marzipan Rose. When I experimented with this flavor a couple weeks ago, she couldn't get enough of the icing. Her palate is way sophisticated! Her friends at the party didn't like it as much, but their parents did, ha!

Last week, I also baked a ton of stuff for my older daughter's animal rights group at her middle school. They held a bake sale to raise money for Animal Acres. The kids descended like locust and it was a big hit. Great job, group!

Vegan vanilla and chocolate cupcakes.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

This Week's Baking

I'm obsessed with college basketball. For the Final Fours Weekend I baked these basic chocolates for family and friends.

Animal Acres had their Earth Day event last weekend. We helped out with some cupcakes - 120 of them! And they made me this cool sign. I baked the signature Earth Day cupcakes that I made for my youngest daughter's birthday last year. All in all, the event was a big success. Animal Acres is the best!

Monday, March 31, 2008

This Week's Baking

These were for a last-minute order. I fancied up simple chocolate cupcakes with gorgeous, local organic strawberries, which are now in season here in Cali. So good!
Vegan coconut cupcakes with coconut "buttercream" with fondant stars for a friend's birthday. I didn't use any refined/granulated sugar for the cake. They're made with half maple syrup and half agave. The agave gives it that pretty golden color.

Three-Berry Tart with almond crust for a BBQ

A twist on the Brombeerbusser cookies, made with Swiss Black Cherry jam that I found at local Italian deli.

Easter Baking

Vegan spring ganache cuppers.

These are called Brombeerbusser, apparently. I veganized and adapted a recipe from a brilliant German blog called Really delicious!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

This Week's Baking

This is a Lemon "Cream" Tart.
It's a combination of Fran Costigan recipes. It has an almond crust, a lemon layer, a tofu cream layer and topped with candied Meyer lemons. So good.

This is a vegan Chocolate-Chocolate Cake with Cashew Brittle. It's inspired by Martha Stewart. I made it for my best friend Mandy's birthday.
It's small, double layer cake, only about five inches in diameter. In the middle there's a layer of ganache, a layer of tofu mousse, some of the brittle and topped with the mousse and brittle. Very decadent!
Here's a tiny banana nut loaf! I am definitely into small baking right now. I can't resist the itty bitty loaf molds and cutting cakes down. It's too cute.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Tarts & Pies

If I was forced to choose, I'd say that the dessert I enjoy eating the most is pie. And tart. Oh, maybe cookies. Or ice cream? In any event, I spent a good part of the week baking tarts and pies.

These are mini vegan apple pies baked in the muffin pan. These were inspired by British baker Angela Boggiano.

This is a pear ginger tart adapted and veganized from a recipe listed at, where I troll often.
The crust is made from crushed vegan gingersnaps. The filling is a lightly sweented "cream cheese." The pears are lightly sweetened and tossed in cinnamon and ground ginger. These were fantastic.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

This Week's Baking

I call these Maduro Cupcakes. They're part of my Back to Roots Series. I've been developing some recipes that sprout from family roots. I want to interpret Puerto Rican desserts into cakes/cupcakes. This is my first experiment. The cake is Caribbean spice cake, made with cloves, cinnamon, a little allspice, and the frosting is a tiny on the caramel side, drizzled with vegan caramely flan sauce infused with cloves. I wanted to top it with a platano, but the fried banana worked. These were ridiculous! As in good.

These are Mini Layered Coconut Cakes made for my friend Kim's birthday. I used the Coconut Cloud Layer Cake recipe from Fran Costigan's book More Great Good Dairy-Free Desserts and iced the layers and outside with a basic vegan coconut buttercream. The toppers are tempered chocolate set in shapes.

Wheeler's Black Label sent me a sampling of his vegan ice cream last week! Whoohoo! I baked these orange-ginger cookie bowls for the occasion. This recipe is also from Fran's lovely book.

This is a gorgeous ginger ice cream topped with the clove-infused caramel sauce I made for the Maduro Cupcakes. There's a little "milano" cookie on top that I made with the orange-ginger cookies sandwiching chocolate.
This sundae has Wheeler's ginger and green tea vegan ice creams. So, so delicious. Thanks Wheeler!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

This Week's Baking

I baked for a women's group this weekend. They gave me creative license, and I wanted to give them something decadent and sophisticated. These have a chocolate cake with an espresso ganache and a touch of amaretto. I topped with a royal icing and a fondant flower.

These I baked for the family. Monogram cupcakes! Rich chocolate cake with a simple vanilla frosting, lettered in dark chocolate. Yum.

And these I baked for the office. I attended a week-long vegan baking intensive this past week at the Natural Gourmet Institute in Manhattan, and I promised the office something immediately when I returned. These are Coffee Cake Muffins inspired by a cake recipe by Fran Costigan.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Valentine's Day Shimmer

The decorating of these was inspired by lovely British baker Peggy Porschen. Half of the cupcakes are vegan jelly-filled almond cardamom. The others are rich vegan chocolate. Both are topped with fondant icing and royal icing with edible shimmer.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Supporting Future Activists

My twelve year old daughter started an animal rights group at her middle school. I told her I would bake for her group every time they met. If yummy treats lure them there, her compassion will keep them. It's proving to be a good combination.
These are pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes with cinnamon icing. The original recipe is from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, and they are delicious.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Rivera's at Animal Acres!

Animal Acres held their their annual holiday party on December 15th and we were there to donate nine dozen cupcakes for the event. We brought chocolate cupcakes with crushed candy cane frosting, all vegan of course. The candy canes were from Hammond's all-natural line of candies colored with only beet-color; no unknown bug juice! We also brought gingerbread cupcakes, our personal holiday favorite. We love you, Animal Acres!