My dad’s birthday was last week…or more like two weeks ago…or some time awhile ago (oops) and since I’m a graduate student now I literally have no time to bake or post new blog posts, so really I’m just very behind in posting this recipe. But I hadn’t realized it had been that long. I guess I owe a big apology to my dad and all his friends who I’m sure were checking my blog obsessively (yeah, yeah, I have about 2 readers, who am I kidding?) to see the pictures and get the recipe for this fantastically rich chocolate cake that was dense, delectable, and delicious. And very difficult to stop eating! But that was okay, because it was healthy. Healthy? Cake? Well, it had extra special ingredients that added lots of vitamins and nutrients, so it was healthy, as healthy as a chocolate birthday cake really can be.
The first fruit in the recipe was orange juice, because I wanted a citrus-blast in this chocolate confection. That taste was obvious after the first bite. However, the secret “healthy” ingredient was avocado. Yes, you read that right: Avocado. Before I added the cocoa powder, guess what color the batter was? A lovely bright green! I almost didn’t want to add the cocoa and just savor the neon color, but I knew my dad would appreciate the chocolate cake A LOT so I went for that.
I used a recipe for a chocolate cake that just happened to have avocado in it, and I found the recipe here. I simply substituted fresh orange juice instead of the water that the original recipe called for, and I got an Orange Chocolate Cake! I made an easy Dark Chocolate Ganache to go on the outside of the cake (1 pound of vegan dark chocolate, melted, then blended with plain unsweetened almond milk, then refridgerated for 4 hours till hard enough to spread) and made a quick Orange Buttercream to use as a filling between the three layers of cake and as decoration on the top. The Orange Buttercream was a variation of the Orange Buttercream recipe in Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World, based on what I had on hand at home. I used orange extract and fresh orange juice and it was delicious.
Orange Buttercream Ingredients:
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated vegan shortening
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance)
3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 tsp. orange extract
2-5 Tblsp. fresh orange juice
For the frosting, cream together the shortening and margarine until well combined and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat for about 3 more minutes. Add the orange extract, and continue creaming. Slowly add the orange juice until the frosting reaches your desired consistency, and beat for another 5-7 minutes until fluffy. Spread or pipe onto the tops of your cupcakes in whatever design you choose.
Here’s a shot of the cake, after cutting into it: